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September 20, 2012

Column #1,621

(second in a two-part series)

Same-Sex Marriage Will Change Culture

By Mike McManus

            Same-sex marriage is on the ballot this fall in Maryland, Minnesota, Washington State and Maine.  Polls show support for it now in all four states, though it is narrowing in Maine.

            “When people hear their legislature is considering a law like this and they think, `What’s the harm?’ They need to realize that there is a direct threat to religious liberty – to business owners, employees, religious entities,” said Jim Campbell of the Alliance Defense Fund.

Maggie Gallagher, President of National Organization for Marriage, is blunt: “Christian adoption agencies will be driven out of the public square, which has already happened in Massachusetts, Washington D.C. and Illinois. There will be fewer parents for troubled children.

            “Schools will teach gay marriage is a civil right.  Small businesses that do weddings will have to help gay couples get married or will be treated the way we treat bigots opposed to interracial marriages, even if individual clergy are not required to recognize gay marriage.”

            For example, Wildflower Inn in Lyndonville, Vermont refused to allow their facilities to be rented for the wedding reception of a lesbian couple, even though the state has legalized same-sex marriage. The inn’s owners, Jim and Mary O’Reilly, said it violated their Catholic faith.

            The lesbians sued and won the case, forcing the owners to pay $30,000 in fines: $20,000  to a charity chosen by the lesbians and $10,000 to the Human Rights Commission.  Further, the owners were told they had to rent their facilities to all couples, or none.  The O’Reillys chose none.  By living their faith, they were fined and deprived of future income.

            Carroll Conley, Executive Director of the Christian Civic League of Maine, which is leading the battle against same-sex marriage, said, “In Massachusetts, parents of second graders in 2006 were not allowed to remove their children from a curriculum promoting marriage between two men.”

            The kids were read a book, “King and King,” about two men who have a romance and marry each other, with a picture of them kissing. The parents of two second graders sued to force the schools to notify parents and allow them to opt-out their children when homosexual- related topics were taught.

            A Federal judge dismissed the case, ruling that because same-sex marriage is legal in Massachusetts, the schools had a duty to normalize homosexual relationships to children, and that schools have no obligation to notify parents or let them opt-out children.

            “Think about that,” wrote some parents. “Because same-sex marriage is `legal,’ a federal judge has ruled that the schools now have a DUTY to portray homosexual relationships as normal despite what their parents think or believe!”

            It has become commonplace in Massachusetts for teachers to prominently display photos of their same-sex “spouses.”  Hundreds of high schools and even middle schools now hold “gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender appreciation days” to fight “intolerance.”

            All insurance in the state must now recognize same sex married couples in coverage and businesses must give them all benefits accorded to heterosexuals. Wedding photographers, halls and caterers must do same-sex marriages or be arrested for discrimination.

Catholic Charities abandoned handling adoptions after more than a century rather than being forced to place children with gays and lesbians.  

In New Mexico Vanessa Willock asked Elane Photography to photograph her same gender “commitment ceremony.”  Elane replied that it photographed “traditional weddings.”

Willock filed a discrimination suit with the New Mexico Human Rights Commission, charging that Elane is a “public accommodation” like a restaurant who denied her services because of her sexual orientation. The Commission ruled against Elane and ordered it to pay $6,600 in attorney fees. Columnist George Will said the case “demonstrates how advocates of tolerance become tyrannical.”

 

In New Jersey, a beachfront property operated by United Methodists, the Ocean Grove Camp Meeting Association, was sued for refusing to rent for a lesbian couple’s civil union ceremony.  A judge ruled against Ocean Grove because New Jersey legalized civil unions under court order.

As Anglican Bishop John Guernsey puts it: “If we lose traditional marriage, religious liberty will be lost along with it.”

What’s more alarming is that a growing segment of the homosexual community accepts the molestation of children.  The Journal of Homosexuality (whose editor, John deCecco, also sits on the editorial board of the pedophilia advocacy journal Paedika) ran a double issue in 1990 that was devoted entirely to “male intergenerational intimacy.”  In fact, the San Francisco Sentinel, a Bay Area gay-activist newspaper, published a piece arguing that pedophilia is central to male homosexual life.

Same sex marriage should be defeated in all four states, as it has been in 32 states to date.

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