Thursday, January 15, 2009

Gay Marriage Bill Being Introduced In Maine

Gay Marriage, Homosexuality, Maine

Sen. Dennis Damon said he is introducing a bill to rewrite Maine's existing statute that defines marriage as between one man and one woman, instead defining it as a union between two people. In addition, it recognizes "gay marriages" from other states. Supporters of "gay marriage" said this is the time to recognize marriages between same-sex couples.

Maine currently has a domestic partnership registry that's open to gay couples. But that's not enough for "gay marriage" supporters. Damon says it's time to "fully end discrimination in Maine."

Damon's gay marriage proposal faces a fight. House Minority Leader John Tardy, R-Newport, is expected to propose bolstering the state's one man-one woman definition by putting it in the Constitution. The Maine Family Policy Council also plans to oppose the gay marriage bill "with everything we've got," Executive Director Michael Heath said. The Roman Catholic Diocese of Portland also will work aggressively against the bill, which goes to the heart of a fundamental issue for many.

Those who support “gay marriage” are forgetting that "gay marriage" is impossible. Society does not have the ability to redefine marriage because it is not a social construct. It is something that flows from human nature itself. Society can’t enable men to marry men or women to marry women any more than we can enable men to turn into ducks or women to turn into geese. Denying people these abilities is not a matter of fairness or equal access. It is not a matter of discrimination or bigotry. We simply do not have the ability.

It is obvious to all that sex is about reproduction. Babies are helpless and require an enormous amount of care and attention. Children also take a long time to mature. Raising children is a multi-decade effort that needs the involvement of both parents. The fact that human offspring require so much care and take so long to mature means that their parents need to be joined in a stable union.

Marriage is a permanent partnership between a man and a woman ordered to the procreation of offspring by means of some sexual cooperation. This is the reality of what marriage is and what it has been understood to be in all human societies in history, even those that have been otherwise tolerant of homosexuality.

Given the fact that marriage is a reality of human nature, we cannot change it. We don’t have the ability to alter human nature. The most society could do is institute homosexual marriage as a legal fiction. That is to say, we could create laws requiring those in society to treat those in homosexual unions as if they were married. People could be required to refer to homosexual unions as "marriages," to refer to people in such unions as "spouses," to alter forms so that people in such unions can present themselves as such, and to give them the status of married people regarding adoption, housing, taxes, insurance, divorce, and inheritance.

But while the law could be rewritten to coerce society into treating people in homosexual unions as if they were married, this would not give them the reality of marriage. It would not change the nature of their union to correspond to what marriage actually is. All society would be doing is playing a word game, stretching the term marriage so that it no longer picks out a particular human reality that has existed and will continue to exist—unaltered—no matter what word games are played around it.

Links to similar articles

Catholic Answers "Gay Marriage": The Central Issue

Keyser "Gay Marriage" bill being introduced to Maine


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