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Getting Opinionated Again

Warning: The following is a representation of my opinion. If you don't like it when people make their opinions public then I suggest you stop reading now and go on with your day. Also, this may be my longest blog ever. So, if you don't like to read then may I suggest playing a video game or building something out of Popsicle sticks. If, however, you think that you can make it through then you will have done a great thing and should feel proud of yourself for making such an accomplishment. Leave a comment and I may even send you a trophy.

I wrote this blog over the span of several days, so bear with me as it is lengthy and covers two issues that can both be summed up as bigotry. I felt compelled to write this as I feel that those who do not agree with the liberal left generally will keep their mouths shut in fear that they will be viewed as bigots or worse. Minorities (no reference here to race, just minorities in general) will so often play the accusation card that few people will voice their opposition to an issue being argued. A perfect example of this was a couple months ago after one of Jacob's football games. We were leaving as were many others and upon entering the parking lot there was a woman who was angrily shouting obscenities while telling her family about somebody who did something very inconsequential. I let it go the first couple times, but upon realizing no end, I spoke up by saying "Hey. Hey. Do you mind keeping it G-rated? There's children everywhere." I said this and kept walking still attempting to hold Jacob's ears. After a couple seconds of silence which apparently was from the family trying to process what just happened (they probably don't get asked to keep it down by white people very often) here came the words. The husband started mouthing saying all kinds of things mostly accusing us of saying worse around our kids at home, being "country" and "racists", and about how his father owns the police. Yeah, I don't get that last part either but he sure was talking a lot about it. He wouldn't stop his rant, but refused also to look me in the face while doing it. He clearly didn't want any real trouble, just an opportunity to look like he was defending his dirty-mouthed spouse.

I also didn't want any real trouble but wouldn't have hesitated to physically shut him up had he actually opposed a visible threat or even spouted off a verbal one under his breath. He ran his mouth, yes, but was obviously being very careful as to choose his words and body language in such a way that I wouldn't have cause to take any further action. He just wanted to cause a scene and announce to anyone within earshot that I was a racist. I am not a racist. Far from it. I, however, will not fear being accused of being one. Do I naturally have that feeling like every other white person that compels them to restrain themselves in situations that they normally wouldn't if the person involved was white? Yes, I do. I feel it. And I hate it. It's social conditioning, not racism. My generation has been reminded of the racist atrocities of past generations so often that there is an understandable fear in the minds of white people that they might be associated with the racists of history simply because of their skin color. It's the same fear that resides in racial minorities. Many Americans of Arabic decent deal with looks from people and they, too, fear that they will be associated with those few that have hurt so many.

It's unfair and a clear injustice when anyone makes statements or acts in such a way that is based off another person's skin color. I highly doubt that the man at the football field parking lot would've called me what he did if I had been virtually any other race other than white. While some may argue that his actions were racist or not racist, we can be sure of one thing: Racism has been kept alive and well by people who will not let it go. This goes for every race.

As an avid reader of the News-Leader, I've run across many articles in the Voices section that I agree with and many that I have not. As far as I can tell, the NL is somewhat fair with the quantity of liberal articles versus the conservative ones, but I have noticed an imbalance in the effectiveness of those articles. It seems to me that many of the conservative articles are not as well-written as the liberal ones. I highly doubt that this is because liberals are just naturally better writers. Rather, I suppose that the powers that be at the NL have a tendency to sympathize with the left and purposefully choose the letters from the right so that they are not as convincing. In all fairness, the numbers may be about the same, but the letters are carefully chosen as to what may see print and what may not.

One of these letters was recently written by Paul Harris, a homosexual originally from California who recently relocated to Eureka Springs, AR. Despite his pride and love for his home state he felt forced to leave it for conflicting ideals. More specifically, the recent Proposition 8 passing that amended California's State Constitution to include the words "only between a man and a woman" when discussing marriage was why Mr. Harris felt that he no longer could stay in CA. So, he moved to Eureka Springs, AR. This is ironic since Arkansas was one of the first states to do what Proposition 8 did for CA back in 2004 when Massachusetts started allowing homosexual marriages. Not only did Arkansas restrict marriage to being only between a man and a woman but they also banned any same-sex civil unions, a step further from what many other states did. So, just into the introduction of Mr. Harris' letter, I'm already failing to see any logic applied to his decisions.

The rest of the letter is basically an attempt at humanizing himself so as to gain sympathy from the reader while claiming many injustices done to him over his lifetime done by "religious extremists" among others. He uses words like "equality" and "civil rights" and expects the reader to feel sorry for him and all gays everywhere for the terrible injustices that they must endure, specifically being denied "the equal right to marry."

Let's look at this, though, shall we? Since when has marriage been a right? I know what it has been throughout history and all around the world: a spiritual and religious union between a man and a woman. Study the practice of marriage in all cultures and you will find two very repetitious themes. The first, that the two involved make up one of each gender. Second, that the ceremony is always done as part of a spiritual ritual. The rituals vary from culture to culture, but the central theme is the same. A man and woman come together to spend their lives with one another as one unit blessed and approved by their god. Jews do it. Muslims do it. Hindus do it. Christians do it. Catholics do it. Buddhists do it. The list goes on and on.

The pattern can not be dismissed. While I agree that gays should not be discriminated against, we seriously differ on our ideas of discrimination. Leave marriage what it is and always has been. Leave family what it is and always has been. Not all things are rights. The height restriction for a roller coaster is not age discrimination against children. Social Security benefits is not age discrimination against the non-elderly. Restricting a high school girl to the girls soccer team rather than the boys team is not gender discrimination. Restricting men from using the women's bathroom is not gender discrimination. Being denied financing for purchasing a Lexus while working at a minimum wage job is not financial discrimination.

Many resources define marriage as a social, spiritual, or religious union that is recognized by either the state, society as a whole, or a religious organization. This definition isn't perfect and by using words as a means to construct the definition someone somewhere will always attempt to interpret it differently. But it pretty much makes as clear as it can that marriage is a religious institution that is recognized by a religious organization, government, or society. Society here in the U.S. voted and determined that they didn't recognize homosexual unions to be marriage. The overwhelming majority throughout the world shows that they don't recognize them as marriage. Most governments including ours does not recognize them. And the majority of religious organizations don't recognize them.

Homosexual relationships can not, therefore, be recognized as a legal marriage. Since society collectively views marriage as a religious, spiritual act between people that is more than just a contract, it is no more a person's right to marry, than it is their right to be holy. Likewise, on whether homosexual couples should have the right to equally adopt children, it is no more a person's right to be a parent, than it is their right to be able to physically birth a child. No one has the right to be a parent. Many people live and die and never have children in their home and it was not because they were stripped of their rights.

5 comments:

i like your clarification of what marriage is -- refusing to call something a marriage when it is fundamentally not a marriage isn't discrimination...

this issue reminds me of the fact that there is a severe lack of reconciliation between people and God. maybe there is also a lack of godly people who can express themselves clearly on such issues.

hey, thought i'd mention this separately so you can erase it (couldn't find an email for you):

possible typo:

third from last paragraph, sentence is "However, the solution is not to grant homosexuals the ability to marry to enjoy the same legal benefits, but instead just grant the ability to enjoy the same legal benefits."

if this right, then sorry about the false alarm

Thanks for your comments, Patrick. Your compliment has revitalized me.

No, it's not a typo. However, I realize now that it is worded somewhat confusing. I'll update it.

What I mean is that the solution is not to allow them to marry for the financial benefits, but rather allow the financial benefits to be obtained by some other means other than marriage. For example, California has a law that allows "Registered Domestic Partnerships" the same benefits that the state grants married couples like who is the default owner of property upon the other's death, being power of attorney in case of hospitalization, the tax issues, etc.

I can see the logic in not granting special privileges of a financial nature and property ownership nature strictly to married couples. But, of course, when it comes to marriage and adoption qualifications, I see neither as a right in which anyone is entitled. The state recognizes what kind of environment children need and thrive in and they have a very long list of requirements. It is not discrimination to not make the cut.

Thanks for the help, though. I'm not above making typos by any means.

This country was based on GOD and his law. His law states clearly that homosexuality is wrong. Why are we trying to condone there actions by giving them any rights at all. Not loving a homosexual is wrong "for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God" but giving them rights so they can be more financially stable is wrong too. This is not China, or Pakistan. We live in the USA in GOD we trust and in God we should obey.

Dustin, thanks for your comment. I may have flip-flopped a bit on this issue. Originally I was swayed by the knowledge that one of these benefits that married couples have is the ability to have rights to see and make decisions concerning their spouses if their spouse is incapacitated to some extent as in a coma. Since homosexual couples do not have this benefit and cannot obtain it by any means, there have been plenty of times where a person has been denied any access to the person that they have had a relationship with. The family is given the ability to deny any non-family members access to visitation or anything else. And, it's downright terrible what some families will do just because they do not agree with the lifestyle that their family member chose.

But, you're right. I read through the list of benefits and determined that most of them can be cleared up by having a will made. The rest seem to not be benefits that should be granted to just anyone for being human and a U.S. citizen. They are mostly random inconsequential benefits that probably should remain benefits only for married couples of the opposite sex.

So, I retract my previous statements that suggest that maybe homosexuals should be granted any of the rights that are strictly for married people.

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