Saturday, July 16, 2005

Same-sex, the RC church, the UN and so on . . .

When I respond to a commenter it's because the comments they've made deserve to be answered - and sometimes the comments section is just too small.

Todays comments are in response to my post "How did we get here?" and are courtesy of NDP Nadine, who is a regular commenter at Either Orr. As per usual, quotes from NDP Nadine are in italics. They are unedited, except for placement.

SSM is all about the right to belong, the right to be equal; therefore, I consider it to be a human right.

One does not have to be married to be equal or to belong, in our society – in any society. Human rights are available for all humans. Marriage is not -- even now that the definition has been changed in Canada, there are whole segments of society ineligible because they don't meet the criteria. Human Rights are 'individual rights' -- marriage does not fall into that category.
As for equal coupling – one doesn’t have to be married in Canada to enjoy equal status in terms of taxation, housing, adoption -- common law couples enjoy most of the same rights and benefits, hetero or same-sex.
Whether gays like it or not, they didn’t fit the definition of marriage as understood by all cultures and religions. Proof: the definition had to change. Marriage is defined by its criteria. Changing the criteria is changing a fundamental component of the institution. It doesn’t make the relationships equal, it only makes them ‘fair’ which could have been done through a parallel form of registration. Legislation calling same-sex relationships 'marriages' will never make them so in the minds of many people. Don't say they are wrong, or bigots -- Bill C-38 says they are allowed to believe that because of their relgion.

In fact, so does the UN Universal Declaration of Human Rights, of which Canada is a signatory. Article 16 of the Declaration states: "(1) Men and women of full age, without any limitation due to race, nationality or religion, have the right to marry and to found a family. They are entitled to equal rights as to marriage, during marriage and at its dissolution." Sounds very inclusive to me.

You’re dreaming in technicolour Nadine. I don’t hold the UN in high enough regard to care what they think, but think of cultural and political make up of the UN. This wording was put in place specifically to rule out same-sex marriage. Had they been inviting gay-coupling to be justified through this, the wording would have been ‘Men and/or women . . .’

And why the big rush to defend churches anyhow?

And why your big rush to bash them?
Throughout the world Christian churches have done more to support and sustain marginalised people than any other ‘group’. It was Christianity (the Papacy in fact) that created appeals courts for people accused of crimes. It was Judeo-Christian values that lead to our current understanding of ‘human rights’. I’m not going to give you a history lesson here, but the Catholic church and nations influenced by Catholicism were pioneers in the arts, technology and science. The church itself has been a champion of freedom during times when the secular world was brutal and violent in the name of the state. Don’t get me started on the Crusades or the Inquisition – two of the most misunderstood, mythologised eras in history. Churches by far, have done, and continue to do --- more good for society than any government or state that has ever existed.

Church history is full of discrimination, violence, bigotry, the spilled blood of millions of people.

Secular nationhood is filled with the same. It is the nature of man, not the nature of Christianity that makes it so. No one kills in the name of God or Christ. Those who do are in error. Their error does not make the church culpable. It is insupportable theologically and biblically for people to kill in the name of Christianity. People do kill as agents of their state, nation, or in self-interest -- and with full sanction of their motivators.
As for discrimination and bigotry– the values of justice and equality of all people, which we take for granted, are the products of centuries of Christian discernment and freedom.

Not to forget residential schools either.

The churches acted as instruments of the state. Some of what happened at these schools was shameful and the churches have accepted responsibility for their role. Unfortunately the problems of our Native communities continue, and there are no simple solutions. Blaming the churches for their part in this tragedy is fair, but keep in mind the residential schools were designed, mandated and created by the government. Although we tend to impute malice to the people who created and worked within these places, I would suggest that when they started, it was with grand ideals and lofty intentions but as often happens -- misguided, paternalistic, governmental do-gooders thought they knew better for these people than they could figure out for themselves. They were wrong.

These are things not to be forgotten because clearly, discrimination is a mainstay in religion.


In societies where there is no religion, or where religion has been forced out of the mainstream, how have things been?

Jesus would be appalled at how people treat each other in his name.

On this point we agree.

I think he would support SSM anyway.

I think you’re mistaken.
Jesus understood the nature of humanity. Although Jesus never speaks of marriage, he does speak of divorce. Matthew 19 says: "The Pharisees also came to Him, testing Him, and saying to Him, "Is it lawful for a man to divorce his wife for just any reason?" And He answered and said to them, "Have you not read that He who made them at the beginning 'made them male and female,' and said, 'For this reason a man shall leave His father and mother and be joined to his wife, and the two shall become one flesh? So then, they are no longer two but one flesh. Therefore what God has joined together, let not man separate." (. . .) "His disciples said to Him, "If such is the case of the man and his wife, it is better not to marry." But He said to them, "All cannot accept this saying, but only those to whom it has been given: For there are eunuchs who were born thus from their mother's womb, and there are eunuchs who were made eunuchs by men, and there are eunuchs who have made themselves eunuchs for the Kingdom of Heaven's sake. He who is able to accept it, let him accept it."

Jesus’ thinking on marriage doesn’t reflect the values of his times. The Pharisees believe they have the right to divorce, Jesus is telling them that Moses only told them they had that right because mankind had become so hard-hearted. His quote on the nature of marriage, and celibacy in the event that marriage is for some reason not in the cards, is unmistakable.

It seems to me, it's simply because of latent bigotry.

It seems to me that support of SSM is because of blatant ignorance and arrogance. Both of our opinions in this regard are irrelevant to the discussion.

Homosexuality is genetic, no one choses to be social outcasts. So why do people think it's ok to discriminate on things people have no control over?

There is no scientific consensus as to the reasons for homosexuality, but let me ask you this – if in fact it is genetic, or some sort of pre-birth anomaly ---- if science could invent a cure, how many gay people would take it?
As for being social outcasts – don’t pretend this is 19th century, Nadine. Gays are no longer social outcasts – they are prominent leaders in many aspects of society. They are not, and quite frankly, they never have been at the back of the bus. They had to hide their predilections in the past, but unlike other marginalised groups – they could choose to do that.

(this was in response to a reply from nicol of The War Room -- for context, you should read the comments section of yesterday's post) --- nicol, haha, read some history dude. Being left of centre does not make one a Marxist. Way back in the 30s, keep in mind that the Communist party wanted nothing to do with the CCF. Opponents of the CCF back then tried to associate it with Communism including PM Bennett but it was never the case. The CCF banned dual party membership so no communists could have possibly infiltrated it. The CCF is rooted in social democracy, labour, agrarianism, populism and social gospel. Hardly Marxist.

Your comparison of the CCF and the NDP is faulty. The ‘root’ of the NDP might be the CCF, but the two parties are hardly the same. You and the NDP are much farther left than simply ‘left of centre’ ---or at least you were, until this Parliament.

And about homosexuality, do you remember chosing heterosexuality? I sure don't. Gay people know they're different from a very young age because they are indeed born that way. Have you been in a school recently and seen how suspected gays are treated? It's truly tragic.

Oh please. It’s chic to be gay. I’ve got four kids in public school in Toronto. Smokers and fat people are treated with more derision and contempt. And say what you like – yes, people choose to smoke and overeat, but some people also choose to flaunt their gayness. Get off the gay-as-victim bit. Gays have never been an ‘oppressed’ minority. They have been a closeted minority, they have been scorned and despised – but oppression means subjugation – they don’t fit the definition of an ‘enslaved’ segment of society. Don't tell me they want to change that definition now.

I'm convinced that people who appear sincere about their concern for gay oppression yet oppose gay marriage are hiding at least some prejudices.

We all have prejudices, Nadine. Some of us are able to admit to them, and others lie to themselves that they are perfect. I believe that gays are equal to me, but I don’t believe they fit the criteria to be ‘married.’ If you think that makes me a bigot, I can live with that.
You see your views on religion and religious people, and your simplification of complex issues in order to dismiss adversaries as ‘latent bigot(s)’ as justified. Dear, your bias is showing.

Otherwise it wouldn't be such a big deal.

So all things that are important to a person are the result of prejudice? Perhaps. But that includes your prejudices and your bigotry – this is a big deal to you – why? Because you are altruistic? Or because you have some deep hatred of religion, and people who follow a code of morality and value system that you reject?
It is a big deal to me because I believe I don’t have a right to impose my morality on you. You have a right to live as you see fit. You have a right to believe that I am a bigot, and you have a right to teach your children that I am a bigot.
You believe that I don’t have the right to teach my children that homosexual activity is against nature and that it is immoral – or that if I do, you and your ilk have the right to ‘correct’ my teaching in the public realm through the normalisation of homosexuality in the public school system.

Who in this equation is against freedom of thought, against individual rights, against the autonomy of the family?

And those examples of the UN are not representative at all of the entire body. The UN is a product of its parts, so when they don't care, it appears the UN doesn't care. You can't blame the UN for the actions of a few.

It’s funny how you believe this when it comes to the UN, but you don’t give the same consideration to churches and religious people.
My goodness, it seems that someone has double standard on their shoulder. But then, that’s okay, because crying discrimination and bigotry while simultaneously practising them, ‘is a mainstay’ of the left.


* * *
I think the difference between the left and the right is this --
I neither want, nor expect my religion to change your opinion on anything -- but you believe your legislation should change mine.

canadianna

32 comments:

Justthinkin said...

Canadi-anna...SUPERB POST.Can't wait to see Nadine's response.Maybe she should also check out my house for a little comparison on the NDP and Communism.Oh,and BTW Nadine,how come you never post a link to your site,or come to think of it, anything?
Blog on C.

Debris Trail said...

The far "Left" has become a religion. It's high Priests are the likes of Noam Chomsky, Steven Lewis, and Kofi Annan; it's high catheral is the UN; it's hope for the future, one world government uniting us all under the UN banner. And here in Canada, this religion preaches the dogma of tolerance, by showing intolerance.

I'm posting as a non-Christian, an agnostic who believes in neither a god or gods; yet I find the religion of he left to be as frightening and mind numbing as any religion of my forefathers. What is worse, it seeks to paint centuries old faiths as irrelevant, and the practitioners within them as bigots. What a deal, preach tolerance and show total intolerance at the same time. Make sweeping generalities about Christians, yet preach against bigotry. Force radical social screeds down the throats of the vast majority of people while decrying their right to practice their faith. Preach separation of religion from state, yet infringe the state on religion.

Wow, great gig if you can get it. And, practice it all with the evangelical zeal of Billy Graham.

Anonymous said...

Thanks Canadianna for the excellent posting. Do you mind if I print this off & share it, off line, with some other people? You have my word you will be fully attributed. ---- John G

bob said...

Damn, girl, you've gotten real good!
A whole army of cheers!

Koby said...

"Gays have never been an ‘oppressed’ minority. They have been a closeted minority, they have been scorned and despised – but oppression means subjugation – they don’t fit the definition of an ‘enslaved’ segment of society. Don't tell me they want to change that definition now."

Come again?

Homosexuality has been illegal in pretty much every society at some point, including Canada. As you are of the opinion that society does not belong in the bedrooms of a nation, I hope you would go along with calling this state oppression.

Of course state oppression of homosexuality has taken more extreme forms. The gay community adopted the pink traingle as one of enduring symbols. Homosexuals were one of the groups Hitler sought to exterminate and they were forced to wear a pink traingle. The orgin of the word "faggot" goes back to the middle ages when the homosexuals were used to fuel the fire of others burned at the stake. A "faggot" is a burning stick.

"Smokers and fat people are treated with more derision and contempt."

Just how many smokers do you know of that have been beaten to death because they are smokers? How many teenagers have ever gone out and rolled smokers?
What is the sucide rate among teenage smokers? Is it three times the average?

"And say what you like – yes, people choose to smoke and overeat, but some people also choose to flaunt their gayness. Get off the gay-as-victim bit."

Another Elsie Wayne I see. It is ok for straight people to hold hands, or kiss in public, but it is not ok for homosexuals and if they disobey this dicate they are "flaunting" it.

Anonymous said...

Ok Koby, I'm a bit of a history buff. I'm particularly interested in the middle ages and early Protestant Reformation. Now this is the first time I've ever heard that homosexuals were used to fuel the fire of witch burnings and thus originating the word faggot. I think that is mistaken. Could you please reference that for me? When you do, please don't give me a damn website. Tell me the title of a BOOK or better yet an encyclopedia reference. I could give you a dozen web sites about Roswell aliens that have about as much credibility as any web site you'd give me.
Re: "Another Elsie Wayne I see. It is ok for straight people to hold hands, or kiss in public, but it is not ok for homosexuals and if they disobey this dicate they are "flaunting" it."
All right I'd REALLY like to know how you got THAT out of CA's previous comment. Please tell me where she condemned people for holding hands.
"Homosexuality has been illegal in pretty much every society at some point, including Canada. As you are of the opinion that society does not belong in the bedrooms of a nation, I hope you would go along with calling this state oppression."
Ok, ummm, is it illegal now? If not then you really aren't all that oppressed are you? So get off the victim kick.
"How many teenagers have ever gone out and rolled smokers?" Probably none is my guess. Mind teenagers are pretty cruel. They can find many ways to segregate individuals. I remember a girl in high school who was ridiculed constantly because she had big ears. She toughed it out grew up and last I heard got a degree in science and was working as a veteranian. Also, the last time I saw her she had obviously learned to take care of herself because she was so beautiful it made you want to look at her all day. The point is she didn't whine or run blubbering to the courts screaming victim. She had the courage to create her own destiny. I respect her 10 times more than you. People like you don't want to create your OWN security and comfort. You want US to make the world more comfortable FOR you. --- John G.

Canadi-anna said...

Koby -- the 'oppression' the left refers to, is the segregation, aparteid, kind of 'oppression'. Minorities of all sorts have faced and continue to face more hostility than gays have historically in our society.

In the past many groups have been the targets of venom from society at large. Hitler's treatment of gays (from whence came the pink triangle) was an abberation in the western world -- Poles were also targeted by him, and they are not an 'oppressed minority' because of Hitler's attitude.

My point was, that gays have the disctinct advantage of being and invisible minority. If you're black and people are racist, there isn't much you can do to hide that. When homosexuality was still against the law, it wasn't as though gays were just rounded up an lynched, and the simplistic comparisons people make -- and the erroneous history they provide -- 'faggot' for example -- these sorts of unfounded, unsupportable, urban legend-type comments are hyperbole designed to shut down debate.

As for the suicide rate amongst teens -- fat kids, kids with acne, ugly kids -- all have no advocates, no triangles, no support groups, no alternative schools to attend. Gay kids have the whole system backing them, and fighting against those who would attempt to insult or harm them.

To suggest (as NDP Nadine did) that gay youth today still feel marginalised is to deny reality. Marc Hall could not have taken his school to court over a gay prom date if they were still as oppressed as Nadine was making out. Most schools have a gay youth organisation -- they are not hiding. There might be others who look and think they're weird -- but same goes for the chess club and computer nerds.

Koby, you have simplified my arguements, taken them out of context and tried to make them mean what you wanted them to -- we both know that 'gay-bashing' is comparatively rare in Canada and not supported by society at large. That doesn't mean when it happens that it is defendable -- simply that it is not pervasive or socially acceptable.

As for gays 'flaunting their gayness' -- many of todays young gays are 'in yer face'. I'm not just talking about holding hands or kissing (which quite frankly, I find inappropriate at school for anyone). I'm talking about behaviour and rhetoric designed to elicit a response -- and the feigned indignation that results when a negative response is achieved.
Teenagers, straight and gay, are finding their way in the world. One of the things they do is push limits and challenge conventions. When gay kids do that, just like anyone else when they make other people uncomfortable - they have to expect a reaction.
Regardless of how normalised homosexuality becomes in our society, you can't legislate everyone into approving of it. Sorry. That's the way it is.

And about Elsie Wayne "If they (same-sex couples) are going to live together, they can go live together and shut up about it."
Exactly what is so shocking, hateful, vile, bigoted? I've heard gay people say worse about Christians (not just the religions, the people) and no one cares. Elsie Wayne wasn't advocating genocide, she wasn't advocating violence, she wasn't suggesting gay sex be outlawed or that they be pushed back into the closet -- She was stating a fact -- they have all the rights of heterosexual couples, why do they need the word too?

To the left, Elsie Wayne might be a symbol of outdated sensibilities, or of a gay-basher, but to me she represents the public voice of a lot of Canadians who no longer feel free to speak their opinions on gay issues. And, whether you like it or not Koby, it's the gay activists who keep gay issues front and centre. Telling the other side they can't have an opinion or else they're bigots is not good from in a democracy -- especiall when the other side has agreed to full equality, and is only contesting the use of a particular word.

W.L. Mackenzie Redux said...

A very lucid commentary on the real thrust of this latest ( of many) deconstructionist agendas.

macbeth said...

You're on a roll.
I will be checking back later to see NDP Nadine's response.

ndp nadine said...

canadianna--I appreciate your detailed attention to my post. I will gladly respond.
With regards to SSM, we will agree to disagree. People can read the fine print, be techinical, hair-split, legalize, nit-pick all they want to legitimize the denial of gay marriage but for me, it's a matter of simple equality regardless of what some lawyer or religious figure says.
And you nor that other guy answered my question as to when you chose heterosexuality. You seem to suggest the human race by nature is violent but at the same time, one's sexuality is not inborn and genetic. And being gay is chic? It might be the case in Toronto but not where I live out in Hicksville, Saskatchewan. I'm a relatively recent high school graduate and I recall the term "faggot" being the insult of choice. Homophobia is very casual and tolerated in schools. Ian Kroll at the University of Calgary has revealed that 97% of homophobic taunts and slurs in the classroom (not in the hallways) go unnoticed and unpunished. Why are homosexual teens much more likely to commit suicide than their straight cohorts? It doesn't make sense: they choose to be gay, don't like their decision, endure the loneliless and depression so instead of rechoosing to be straight, they kill themselves. It just doesn't add up. That Marc Hall incident is rare; most gays would rather die that come out of the closet voluntarily, and indeed death seems to be the only choice.

And I have to run now, I will address your other comments if you so desire later. :)

Candace said...

C, you are truly on a roll. Another excellent post - where do you find the time LOL?

Koby said...

“Could you please reference that for me? When you do, please don't give me a damn website.”

Nope. I came across it in a journal article, the title of which escapes me now. All I can tell you it was required reading for an Education class I took at UBC.

“Gays have never been an ‘oppressed’ minority.”

Me: Never! This is BS

You: “Ok, ummm, is it illegal now? If not then you really aren't all that oppressed are you? So get off the victim kick.”

I see you are making certain assumptions and wrong ones at that.


“My point was, that gays have the disctinct advantage of being and invisible minority. If you're black and people are racist, there isn't much you can do to hide that.”

What does a Jew look like? Better yet, what did the your typical European Jew, as defined by Nazi Germany’s blood requirements, look like? Remember too that many European Jews over the years had abandoned the Jewish faith and community and had changed their last name conceal their family’s Jewish backgrounds. Marx and Wittgenstein are two examples.

“As for the suicide rate amongst teens -- fat kids, kids with acne, ugly kids -- all have no advocates, no triangles, no support groups, no alternative schools to attend. Gay kids have the whole system backing them, and fighting against those who would attempt to insult or harm them.”

I do not know how else to say this, but Canadianna you are completely out to lunch on this matter. Yes unattractive kids get bugged …. However, this is well worn terrain and the schools have the apparatus in which do deal with these issues. What has become clear over the last 10 years or so is that they do not have apparatus to do with issues faced by gay students. As I mentioned before, in terms of suicide, drug and alcohol abuse, child abuse, and run away rates, the schools have done a very poor job serving these students. A flood of initiatives are being set up to fill that gap.

“'gay-bashing' is comparatively rare in Canada and not supported by society at large.”

No it is not rare. What is rare is that such assaults result in death.

“I'm talking about behaviour and rhetoric designed to elicit a response -- and the feigned indignation that results when a negative response is achieved.
Teenagers, straight and gay, are finding their way in the world. One of the things they do is push limits and challenge conventions. When gay kids do that, just like anyone else when they make other people uncomfortable - they have to expect a reaction.”

What! This sounds like a version of the she wanted it defense. “He flaunted it. What was I supposed to do, but beat him up?” Anyway, very few people ever come out in high school and only recently have people started coming out at all in their mid to late teens (16 and above) If you look at any studies on bullying one of the most common themes are challenges to ones gender identity. Boys who are bullied are often taunted with “fag”, “fruit”, “Queer”, “homo”, “sissy” ….. Many students, who are suspected of being gay, especially if they are below the age of 16, have their lives made a living hell. Very few teenagers are willing to come out and admit that they truly are a “fag” and virtually none feel comfortable enough to “flaunt” it.

This is what Wayne said.

“When it comes to people who wish to live together, whether they are women or men, why do they have to be out here in the public always wanting to call it marriage? Why are they in parades? Why are men dressed up as women on floats? They do not see us getting up on floats to say we are husband and wife. We do not do that. Why do they have to go around trying to get a whole lot of publicity? If they are going to live together, they can go live together and shut up about it. There is no need for this nonsense whatsoever and we should not have to tolerate it in Canada ... As I have stated before, if people wish to live together they can go live together, but do not expect us to endorse it as marriage because they live together. "

Pride parades, as I explained before, are direct challenges to the 40 to 50 percent of Canadians, such as Elise Wayne and yourself, who still see homosexuality as unnatural. Those who take part are most certainly "flaunting" it and are trying to get a rise. Wayne seems incapable of accepting such a direct but peaceful challenge to her beliefs and so wishes to shut it down in some way. She believes that they should simply accept their place in society and live it at that.

Mike said...

Well, there are going to be an awful lot of I-told-you-sos coming from one side or the other on this issue.

Either society will collapse... or life will go on, much as it has this past age.

Canadi-anna said...

Nadine & Koby -- maybe I am Toronto-centric, but with the media coverage and the tv programming that celebrates gayness -- it seems like all across the country gay people are living openly and comfortably. They're living, working, being elected, being promoted. I honestly can't imagine people making an issue of it -- but you're right. Toronto is big city, and I've never lived in a small town.
I'll give you that teens might be treated differently elsewhere -- maybe it's just Toronto where no one seems to care. My kids know gay people and they don't think anything of it. They're just other kids. Most parents wouldn't say that their kids can't hang out with that kid, and most of the insults you hear are swearing and not gay insults.
Nadine -- I don't know whether homosexuality is a choice -- but neither do I believe that there is a consensus on what causes it -- but I do believe that in today's world of open and glorified sexuality, that people (young people) feel freer to experiment than they ever have before. They feel there is less judgement and fewer constraints on their behaviour. I also believe that some kids might be finding a way to rebel against convention or a way to get attention. Don't tell me that I'm wrong -- cutting, anorexia and a whole host of other inexplicable behaviours are increasingly part of the teen 'emo' culture. The point is that during the teen years there are young people who draw attention to themselves because they are 'different' -- whatever that difference is. There are young people who don't fit in and they become lonely and suicidal. Gay kids are amongst them, but are getting support. Other kids, despite what you might think, are often overlooked. Being fat or having acne are not a choice (as in wanting either) but neither are they ever socially acceptable. I would argue that at an age where appearance is more obvious and equally important as sexuality, physical imperfections cause more social rejection. Being gay might involve more inner conflict, but that's another issue.
I also believe that because of the focus on sex and sexuality, teens can sometimes confuse the love they feel for their friends as being sexual. Our culture doesn't celebrate loving relationships apart from sex. Is it really that far fetched to think that young men, possibly without a positive male role model in their lives, might form strong bonds with other young men and assume from the intensity of the feelings that it must be a sexual love? In our society, that doesn't strike me as an impossibility.
Either way, who cares? Whether they can or can't chose it, it doesn't make a difference to my opinion of it.

But if being gay is still as bad for the gay person as it ever was, because so many people are still against homosexuality, (including apparently, young people -- who the left is always telling us are overwhelmingly understanding of gay rights and supportive of gay marriage) then why do we always hear that upwards of 50% of the population is for gay marriage? Who are these people who support it if gays are still treated so badly?

Koby, whatever you might say, you're not going to convince me that the treatment of gays was or is comparable to that of Jews or blacks, except perhaps in Nazi Germany -- but like I've said -- that was an aberration.

And, when it comes to kids name-calling -- the way you choose to act or dress is going to be a factor in whether you are taunted or not. That isn't the 'she asked for it defense' it's a fact of life. It doesn't make it right, but can be a causative factor. Some kids are aiming to create that sort of response. I was a teenage in the 80s when people had mohawks, wore black lipstick and dog collars -- I didn't care, but if people called them 'weirdo' -- what did they expect? They wanted a response. Don't tell me they should get all sensitive and hurt when they get it.
I think all name-calling is wrong, unproductive and rude. If kids do this sort of thing at school, the school should deal with it. If they do it in front of a parent, the parent should deal with it -- but not because the other kid is gay, but because it's just wrong period. There is never an excuse for physical violence, and my comment was not addressing physical confrontations.

Re: Elsie Wayne. Why do gays want to challenge what people like Elsie and I believe?
I don't go around challenging their right to exist -- and when you are challenging my belief system (particularly a religious one) you are challenging my right to exist.
What gives you the right to believe that your way of thinking is so absolutely right, that you should confront mine? I haven't called you names. I haven't advocated violence against you. I haven't been violent. I haven't suggested that you don't have a right to work in peace. I haven't tried to make your life miserable and make it so you can't live in peace. Why do you need to confront me on my beliefs? Why do you seek to control the beliefs of the 40 - 50% of the people with whom you disagree.

If you really wanted me to come around-- to understand you-- you wouldn't be stripping on Yonge Street, you'd be living the kind of life that you tell me you deserve to have when you say you have the right live with your partner and be 'married' -- not engaging in perverse and risky behaviour and flaunting it on the street.
But if that is part of your lifestyle - please don't tell me your lifestyle is one that I should approve of -- I wouldn't approve if you were heterosexual and doing that, why should I approve because you're gay?
I accept that the gay lifestyle (as exemplified during PRIDE)exists, but I want no part of it. I won't work to shut down your parade, but I'm never going go to it, and I'm never going to think it's a legitimate form of expression.
If the parades are really for the 40 -50% who disapprove of your behaviour --I think you've got to find a less offensive way to win them over. Or maybe you're not looking to win them over. Maybe you're just trying to show them scorn or contempt -- how is that kind of attitude going to foster mutual respect?
Ah, that's it. You have no respect for us. You don't like the fact that we exist. I think we had this conversation once before Koby.

Is gayness innate? Maybe. Does that make gay-sex morally acceptable? Not in my opinion. We all have the potential and inclination for wrong-doing. Some of us have a temper, others an impulses to steal, some people are self-absorbed. All of these things are probably part nurture, part nature. Either way, it is our responsibility to control our wrong impulses.

When gay people believe that there is nothing wrong with engaging in homosexual behaviour, that's their business. I couldn't care less. Even though I'm religious, I don't believe a compassionate God is going to condemn them to an eternity of hell for that - but it doesn't change the fact that I see it as immoral and unnatural behaviour.

Why does it matter to you what I think? Elsie Wayne is right. You already have the same human rights as I do. You have the right to work, get housing, associate with whom you want, choose your recreation -- and now you have marriage. What possible difference can it make to your life that I think homosexuality is immoral? It doesn't make a difference to mine that you think I'm a bigot.

You want a world where everyone thinks that gay is okay. I want a world where we can still live with each other, even if we don't agree.
Like I said, that's the difference between us.

Jason Monteith said...

Excellent post Canadi-anna. You are quickly becoming one of the stars of the Blogging Tories, in my humble opinion.

Justthinkin said...

C...again,excellent post

koby...I have looked high and low for your reference to the term faggot.Nowhere could I find any proven reference to the fact gays were used as kindling for burning witches etc.Yes,gay were burned at the stack for sodomy,but this practise ceased in the 17th century.
It has been frequently said that the pejorative use of the word derives from "faggot" in the sense of a bundle of sticks, because homosexual men were burned at the stake for sodomy and faggots were used as kindling. A variant on this is that homosexual men were themselves used as kindling. The gay liberation movement of the 1970s promoted this supposed derivation to highlight the historical oppression of homosexual men.

"There is, however, no historical evidence for these supposed derivations, and the use of the term "faggot" for gay men goes back only to the 19th century. The fact this use of "faggot" appeared in the United States—where no one has been burned at the stake for sodomy (at least not officially)—but not in Britain, where men were burned at the stake for buggery until the 17th century, makes this derivation seem highly unlikely."...source...http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Faggot_%28slang%29.

Maybe your English prof got a little liberal with their facts?Sorta like the Feds saying in a history lesson on the Trudeau years that in 1979,they helped get the hostages out of Iran.Ummmmm...Joe Clark would not be amused,but than,since when has that stooped marxists from re-writing history?

The Arabian Knight said...

This is one of the best posts I have ever read anywhere in the blogsphere. Awsome post Canadianna.

Koby said...

It was a published article. It was not an off hand comment by one of my profs. Anyway, I can not remember the reference for the life of me. All I can tell you was that it was Sociology of Education clas.

“Is it really that far fetched to think that young men, possibly without a positive male role model in their lives, might form strong bonds with other young men and assume from the intensity of the feelings that it must be a sexual love? In our society, that doesn't strike me as an impossibility.”

Sexuality is to a certain degree plastic and Freud said that males often experimented before while in their early teens. I do not know if this is supported by any study. What seems to be emerging is that male sexuality is much less fluid that female sexuality. Females are much more likely to be aroused by same sex stimuli than males. As well, whereas even self declared bisexual males tend be turned on by only same sex stimuli, most self declared bisexual females tend to be turned on my both same sex stimuli and opposite sex stimuli.

”Either way, who cares? Whether they can or can't chose it, it doesn't make a difference to my opinion of it.”

Desire and beliefs are not chosen. I do not choose to believe there is a keyboard in front of me; I just so believe. To say that I desire to desire a glass of water sounds like a stutter. The etiology of sexuality is an interesting area of study and has its useful applications. However, to say that one chooses one’s sexuality is just plain weird.

“But if being gay is still as bad for the gay person as it ever was, because so many people are still against homosexuality, (including apparently, young people -- who the left is always telling us are overwhelmingly understanding of gay rights and supportive of gay marriage) then why do we always hear that upwards of 50% of the population is for gay marriage? Who are these people who support it if gays are still treated so badly?”

This generation of 20 somethings are the most accepting of homosexuality in our nation’s history by a large margin. The next generation promises to be even more accepting. That said, Teenagers are a different story. Even though the teenage years are often said to be a time of rebellion, studies repeatedly show that teenagers mirror their parent’s belief system fairly closely. As a group they are just not free thinkers with their own opinions.

“Koby, whatever you might say, you're not going to convince me that the treatment of gays was or is comparable to that of Jews or blacks, except perhaps in Nazi Germany -- but like I've said -- that was an aberration.”

Fine, be closed minded about it. However, the fact remains that homosexuals have been very much a persecuted group and many countries continue to be so. Ever wonder why gay and Lesbian community would be so closely linked? The persecution of gay and lesbians explain the historical alliances between the two groups. To offset the risk of a police raid, for example, the gay and lesbian communities always held dances together. If the police crashed the party lesbians and gay would quickly pair up.

“Why do you need to confront me on my beliefs? Why do you seek to control the beliefs of the 40 - 50% of the people with whom you disagree.”

If such beliefs and attitudes did not have any affect, I would not bother. However, make no mistake about it they do. We live in a society where homosexuals are much more likely to commit suicide, abuse drugs or alcohol, run away, face child abuse …. It is beliefs such as yours that are part of the problem. It is not sufficient to love all but to condemn one group and for committing the same acts you condone for yourself.

“I wouldn't approve if you were heterosexual and doing that, why should I approve because you're gay?”

You are making certain assumptions about me.

“I accept that the gay lifestyle (as exemplified during PRIDE) exists,”

As exemplified during Pride? Just how many flaming queens do you know? The pride parade is an exaggeration. It is theater. It is a day in which the gay and lesbian community “flaunt” it. Historically it has represented a challenge to the established order. In this sense it has much in common with Carnival, the difference being that this event does not function to ease societal tension, but to create awareness. It is a signal to many thousands upon thousands of closeted gay and Lesbian people that there exists such a community and that their concerns we not be silenced by the Elsie Wayne’s of the world.

“You already have the same human rights as I do. You have the right to work, get housing, associate with whom you want, choose your recreation -- and now you have marriage.”

Are you saying marriage is a human right? Anyway, human rights by definition belong to everyone. That said, I care not about scholastic discussions about what are human rights. I care about legal rights and how they impact on the lives of people who live under them.

Incidentally, as Conservative Jason Kenney pointed out, all Canadians already had the right to marry. Canadians did just not have the right marry someone of the same sex. Little did Jason Kenney know that this was the very same argument, the so called “equal application theory”, that the US Supreme Court struck down in Loving vs Virginia. Only in that case the argument was used to deny blacks from marrying whites. Now, the practical implications for gays and mixed race couples were not the same. Loving was far more significant than the 2003 decision in that sense. However something California Justice Roger Traynor wrote in 1948 is true of both. “A member of any of these races may find himself barred by law from marrying the person of his choice and that person to him may be irreplaceable."

Why is homosexuality wrong and not natural in your books?

Canadi-anna said...

Koby, first, I don't know or care whether you're gay. I've made no such assumption about you. I believe that some of the most articulate and ardent supporters of gay rights are not gay. When I said 'you' in relation to the Pride parade, I was using the universal you, because it always feels pretentious when I use the scholarly 'one'.

It is not sufficient to love all but to condemn one group and for committing the same acts you condone for yourself.
I have no idea what you're talking about here. If you are saying that because straight people have sex, I have no right to condemn gay people for doing the 'same' - that's just ridiculous logic.

As for my opinions on gay sexuality-- they aren't and never were the issue. We've had this argument before and I'm not going to justify my beliefs to you.
The point of my posts over these days has not been to argue against homosexuality, because like I say, I really don't care what people do in private. My arguments have been in favour of the right to hold the belief that homosexual behaviour is immoral and unnatural.
You are entitled to your beliefs, and you support them with data, studies, etc. but you live under the illusion that your POV is the only valid one. I'm not suggesting there is no right and wrong, just that I am aware that different people come to these types of issues with different ideas.
I accept that there are differing opinions and that with this particular issue, it is unlikely that there will be compromise except to agree to disagree as Nadine has said. But as I keep saying, and which you keep demonstrating --- you can't accept that people hold a differing POV and that is typical of many who share your views.
We all have prejudices; we all make judgements about right and wrong with regard to sexuality -- that does not necessarily translate into hostility, rejection, violence or marginalisation. When it does, that's when the legal system steps in.
Thought can't be legislated. While I will accept the laws imposed upon me by the government, I am still free to think as I will.
You keep throwing out statistics about gays and suicide, alcoholism, etc. which is like blaming society for the problems of gays. If only they were accepted, they wouldn't resort to these things. Society as a whole has accepted homosexuals. They are on TV, they are in politics, they are influential activists, they are in the military.
Not everyone is going to like you, no matter who or what you are --- gay, straight, Christian, atheist, movie star, man next door. Don't try using the fact that some people have a problem with homosexuality as blame for the fragile emotional state of some homosexuals.
Maybe the problem with fragile homosexuals is they are too focussed on themselves. That is the case with many people who turn to drugs or alcohol to deal with their lives. Selfishness is always more devastating to the soul than any other affliction.

Dr. Dawg said...

A lot of the discussion here is, with respect, same-old, same-old. But one point requires some clarification: the meaning of the word "oppression."

The Left, in fact, makes a distinction between "oppression" and "exploitation." To exploit means to extract surplus value. Every worker who sells his or her labour-power to live is exploited. But the word has come to mean *unduly* exploited: extracting wealth from colonized peoples, women (when they used to be paid less for work of equal value or even for equal work)and others not in a position to encounter their exploiters as equals, simply by virtue of their membership in a specific group.

"Oppression," on the other hand, simply means the exercise of hegemony over a group in order to maintain its subaltern status. I would argue, as many others have done, that homosexual persons are oppressed, but not exploited, while women have been historically both oppressed and exploited as a group. Hence the strong feminist reaction against the gay slogan a few years back, "Same Struggle, Same Fight."

Anyone who seriously argues that gay people, even now, are not oppressed, should spend a little time reading the papers. Gay-bashing continues, both in word and in deed. From my perspective, it's a sick and hateful thing, and wrapping it up in a religion that claims to preach love just makes things that much worse.

Chairm said...

Your posts have been mentioned at Opine Editorials

Bill C-38 is the Canadian legislation introduced by the Liberal Party this summer and which will enact SSM in that country. As the bill hurriedly reaches the final stages of legislative approval, Canadian blogger canadianna has described her view of the sudden lack of moderation in the marriage debate in Ottawa.

Canadi-anna said...

dr dawg -- I still disagree that gays are still an oppressed segment of our society, but you have a right to your opinion.
You note a difference between 'oppression' and 'exploitation' and I'll grant you that. But oppression implies the state, or society at large is active in 'putting down' gays. I would argue that although gay-bashing does occur, it is not pervasive. Which news organization, which political party -- who exactly oppresses gays in Canada?

Even recently, Jews have been the targets of vitriol and hatred in Canada; their synagogues and cemetaries and schools have been vandalized and desecrated -- Jewish groups don't claim 'oppression' because some people are racist, bigoted, hatful idiots -- because they know this sort of behaviour doesn't have the sanction of the government, nor the endorsement of society.

If, by your comment you are implying that 'religion' oppresses gays, I would remind you that no religion endorses behaviour it considers immoral. Are you suggesting that all religions should now change their teaching about homosexual activity in order to make gay people feel good about themselves?

To pretend that 'gay-bashing' -- violence, name-calling etc. against gays is sanctioned by society or the government, or even the churches, is mythologising current events and creating a 'struggle' atmosphere when in fact there is very little left to struggle for, or against.

The church, and members of clergy have asserted their stance on gay relationships in response to changing the definition of marriage. In the wake of several court decisions forcing suppression of religious freedom, and freedom of expression, churches have legitimate concerns about their right to continue practising their religions free from state interference.
That is not oppression or gay-bashing and if some individuals have engaged in extreme rhetoric over this controversial issue, it has been people from both sides.

There is a difference between 'gay-bashing' and a religious (or secular) belief that the sexual behaviour in which gays engage is immoral and unnatural.
People like you and Koby see anything but unconditional approval as 'gay-bashing'.
Wrapping an anti-religion stance in pious superiority is the mark of a person who preaches tolerance and open-mindedness in principle, but who doesn't exercise either in practice.

Dr. Dawg said...

Let me begin by objecting to the notion that I am exhibiting "pious superiority." That honour, it seems to me belongs to some (but by no means all) of the churches.

"Which news organization, which political party -- who exactly oppresses gays in Canada?"

The National Post. The Conservative Party of Canada. A number of pig-ignorant people who beat up gays outside gay bars. The sponsors of sexual re-education camps like Refuge. Assorted radio preachers. Fred Phelps. Good grief, the list is nearly endless!

"Jewish groups don't claim 'oppression' because some people are racist, bigoted, hatful idiots"

OK, they use (indeed, sometimes over-use) the word "anti-semitic" instead. This is just semantics. Anyway, I thought the big beef among so-cons these days was the use of the word "homophobia," not "oppression."

"If, by your comment you are implying that 'religion' oppresses gays, I would remind you that no religion endorses behaviour it considers immoral. Are you suggesting that all religions should now change their teaching about homosexual activity in order to make gay people feel good about themselves?"

"Religion" doesn't necessarily oppress gays. The Anglican Church of Canada, the Unitarian Church, the United Church of Canada, all recognize gay equality. There are other benighted denominations that insult homosexuals by calling the practice of homosexuality "disordered," "intrinsically evil" -- you know the lingo. Hatred in the name of God. And I'm subsidizing this with my tax dollars!

"There is a difference between 'gay-bashing' and a religious (or secular) belief that the sexual behaviour in which gays engage is immoral and unnatural."

There are religious beliefs that hold that Blacks are inferior to whites; that interracial relationships are sinful; that Jews are the devil's seed; that God supports the war in Iraq. Must I accept every one of these teachings just because someone with a robe declaims it from a pulpit?

Canadi-anna said...

The National Post. The Conservative Party of Canada. A number of pig-ignorant people who beat up gays outside gay bars.

So the Post, where the majority of the editorial board supports same-sex marriage -- and the Conservative Party, which supports equal rights for gays and Civil Unions for gay couples --- are now equivalent with "pig-ignorant people who beat up gays outside gay bars."
Oh. Okay. That's not over the top at all.

The Anglican Church of Canada, the Unitarian Church, the United Church of Canada, all recognize gay equality.

The Anglican Church doesn't. It doesn't yet perform gay weddings, just blessings -- and even then, only in certain diocese.
The Anglican Church of Canada is defering any decision until 2007 and has been expelled from the worldwide Anglican Communion for its actions.
The Canadian church has been far from clear on this issue and is incredibly divided. If they ever come to a definitive decision, they will likely lose half their base -- and this is a church that is dwindling as it is.

There are other benighted denominations that insult homosexuals by calling the practice of homosexuality "disordered," "intrinsically evil" -- you know the lingo. Hatred in the name of God. And I'm subsidizing this with my tax dollars!

You don't subsidize churches. They are tax-exempt, not tax funded. The social services provided by churches through member donations more than make up for the taxes they don't pay.
Abortions are funded with the help of my tax dollars, Murder in the name of choice!-- but that's okay because???

Churches, like the Catholic church, who believe that homosexuality is inherently disordered, or evil, dispair for the homosexual. Do you despair for those who you feel are wrong -- or do you simply condemn without compassion.

Must I accept every one of these teachings just because someone with a robe declaims it from a pulpit?

No one has asked that you accept any one of those teachings, nor any religion's teaching on homosexuality.
No one is imposing their view on you here, dr dawg. The question is not whether you have to accept their teachings -- but can you accept that they accept their teachings?
Or do the churches have to change to conform to the liberal, secular, gay-activist view of the world?
Just asking.

Dr. Dawg said...

So the Post, where the majority of the editorial board supports same-sex marriage--and the Conservative Party, which supports equal rights for gays and Civil Unions for gay couples---are now equivalent with "pig-ignorant people who beat up gays outside gay bars."
Oh. Okay. That's not over the top at all."

But that's not at all what I said. You asked for examples of oppression of gays, and I gave you some. I didn't say they were all equal to each other. Why twist my words?

The National Post carried several nasty articles about SSM--I didn't get the impression that the editorial board had taken a position to support it. I stand corrected on that point, I guess. In fact, I'll admit to being a little startled. Maybe I should read the Post more often. :)

The Conservative Party's "separate but equal" stance--reminiscent of the Deep South in the 'sixties--didn't impress me one bit. Neither does its continued opposition, based as it is on a hateful intolerance. They're going to drive themselves into the ground with the electorate if they keep that up.

"You don't subsidize churches. They are tax-exempt, not tax funded."

It's a zero-sum game. They don't pay taxes--so I pay more taxes.

"The social services provided by churches through member donations more than make up for the taxes they don't pay."

Can you back that up? I've heard such assertions before, but never any figures attached.

"Do you despair for those who you feel are wrong -- or do you simply condemn without compassion."

I despair for the victims of hatred and intolerance. Whoever they happen to be. I'm afraid I don't waste a lot of time feeling sympathy for the victimizers.

"Or do the churches have to change to conform to the liberal, secular, gay-activist view of the world?
Just asking."

Many don't have to change. Others, preaching hatred, will have to change, or they'll gradually wither away. That doesn't mean becoming "gay-activist," whatever that means. It doesn't mean becoming "secular" either, or you'd have a pretty contradictory situation. It does mean putting hatemongers like Bishop Fred Henry out to pasture.

King said...

Great post,
You made some really great points especially on religious issues. It's amazing how people can spew whatever they want about religion and simlutaneously see themselves as the beacon of tolerance.
I don't really have a problem with gay marriage but people like you who favour keeping marriage between a man and a woman are not intolerant and are not bigots. Don't listen to those lefties.
R. King

Canadi-anna said...

dr dawg -- I didn't twist your words. You listed 'The National Post. The Conservative Party. A number of pig-ignorant people who beat up gays outside gay bars' in that order in the first paragraph. You made no distinction that any of the people/groups were worse or better than the others. Since you didn't indicate that you saw a distinction, I could only assume you didn't.
As for the others, Fred Phelps -- what does he have to do with Canada? I've never heard any radio preacher in Canada spew hatred about gays. And gay-re-education --is it forced? Are they rounding them up? Thought not.

Is rejection of a certain behaviour or actions 'hatred'? I don't think so. There are people who spout vitriol, but the Conservative position equal with apartied or deep south treatment of the blacks? Get real.

The gay=race position is untenable in this situation. Were you talking jobs, or housing, lynching -- then you'd have a point.

Marriage is not like those things. It is a legal right, not a human right. If it were a human right, then there could be no restrictions based on age or familial relationship. As a legal right, it is subject to criteria which meets the needs of the culture. Marriage has been universally understood as having an opposite-sex requirement. All the other criteria varies from culture to culture, but the opposite sex requirement doesn't --until now. The purpose of supporting heterosexual partners is based on the idea of procreation, protection and nurture of children (spare me the 'what about infertile people' argument -- we had that discussion long before you visited -- laws are not made to apply to specific circumstances)

You are suggesting that 99% of the world is wrong on this, and has been, since the dawn of man -- you are saying that it took the sexual revolution and 'enlightenment' of the '60s generation to know that gay partners are entitled to the same 'status' as married people.

How can anyone believe that your thinking is the moderate position, and keeping the definition of marriage as it always has been -- is radical? Or hateful?

IOF, the Shriners, the Salvation Army -- just to name three. They build hospitals, they fund shelters and hospices, the have outreach programs for street people, Aboriginals, unwed mothers. They fund & supply food-banks, womens' shelters, toy drives, 'Come in From the Cold' programs -- all without government assistance or money. Just look around your community - call a local church and ask what sort of outreach programs they have. Each church has its own, and each denomination has many.

You used the word 'victimizer' when I asked about compassion for those with whom you disagree. Am I a victimizer by your definition? I don't agree with SSM.

I think you're confusing 'hatred' and 'criticism'. Do you sense hatred coming from me? I have no hatred of you for your opinions, nor do I have any hatred toward gays. You, on the other hand, seem pretty angry.

It's possible for us to disagree, to criticise, to challenge and even condemn -- without being hateful and without being hatemongers.

Others, preaching hatred, will have to change, or they'll gradually wither away(...)It does mean putting hatemongers like Bishop Fred Henry out to pasture.


I'm not going to get into a debate about Bishop Herry's letter, but your answer says you are willing for the churches with which you disagree to 'wither away'. In other words -- you see no need for the government to intervene, and you suspect their congregants will tire of them, and they will naturally fade into history.

That's a perfectly reasonable position. I disagree completely, but you are not advocating state control of church teaching so I can live with your misconceptions of the church position, your venom toward religions you obviously don't care to understand and your fixed perception that people who are against same-sex marriage are automatically hateful.

Koby said...

”Is rejection of a certain behaviour or actions 'hatred'? I don't think so.”

You are not rejecting certain behaviors. You are condemning certain people for engaging in behaviors you have no qualm in allowing others to engage in. Anal Sex, oral sex, kissing, petting … refer to actions engaged in by people.

"Marriage is not like those things. It is a legal right, not a human right. If it were a human right, then there could be no restrictions based on age or familial relationship. As a legal right, it is subject to criteria which meets the needs of the culture. Marriage has been universally understood as having an opposite-sex requirement."

Holland, Belgium and now Spain do not count?

“All the other criteria varies from culture to culture, but the opposite sex requirement doesn't --until now. The purpose of supporting heterosexual partners is based on the idea of procreation, protection and nurture of children (spare me the 'what about infertile people' argument -- we had that discussion long before you visited -- laws are not made to apply to specific circumstances)”

Spare me the procreation crap. Being fertile is neither a necessary or sufficient condition (close relatives can not marry) for getting married. Besides was it not your position that gay couples should recieve the same martial rights as straight ones, but the term "marriage" should be reserved for straights? That being the case procreation really does not come into play. After all, it is the rights not the title that would effect procreation and these rights are the same.

“You are suggesting that 99% of the world is wrong on this, and has been, since the dawn of man -- you are saying that it took the sexual revolution and 'enlightenment' of the '60s generation to know that gay partners are entitled to the same 'status' as married people”

How can I put it? Marriage is just a legal right and as such ‘we” can rejig the definition of marriage to fit with evolving nature of Canadian society. Oh and by the way, the issue at hand had always been should gay couples have the ability to marry. It was never should gay partners be entitled to same status as married people. See the funny thing about marriage being a legal term is that the definition of it can be changed. This sets it apart from linguistic definitions. The definition of marriage is now a union of two people to the exclusion of all others in Canada. According the legal definition of marriage and really what other definition of marriage is there?, there are thousands or gay couples who are married, just like you. I think you said you were married.

“You used the word 'victimizer' when I asked about compassion for those with whom you disagree. Am I a victimizer by your definition? I don't agree with SSM.”

Nope. Being a victimizer implies some sort of intention, avert or willing disregard. That said, the attitudes you hold about homosexuality, but not about SSM, need to be stomped out.

Storm Trooper said...

What I can't fathom is why anybody cares whether two people of the same sex get married. We proclaim western societies to be free - where people do whatever they want so long as they don't infringe on the rights of others. Why, then, does anyone think that they have the right to limits somebody else's choices - either as a group or an individual?

Frankly, I don't think that allowing two homoseuals to marry under the law will affect anybody but those particular homosexuals. People should mind their own business.

There was a time in Canada, if you recall, when non-denominational marriages were not considered legal marriages. There was also a time when Natives had their marriages declared void because they were not performed in Christian churches. There was a time when women did not have the right to vote and weren't considered persons. Of course, as time passed, groups fought for their rights and eventually achieved equality (under the law). If marriage is going to be defined by the law - should it not reflect the interests of all individuals? Not just the staus quo?

Dr. Dawg said...

"I didn't twist your words. You listed 'The National Post. The Conservative Party. A number of pig-ignorant people who beat up gays outside gay bars' in that order in the first paragraph. You made no distinction that any of the people/groups were worse or better than the others. Since you didn't indicate that you saw a distinction, I could only assume you didn't."

I repeat: you asked for examples of homophobic oppression. You mentioned newspapers and political parties, so I responded in that order and I provided some more. You drew an odd conclusion.

It's as though you asked me to give eaxmples of the oppression of Blacks, and I responded, "Well, graffiti downtown. Separate water-fountains. An ignorant editorial in the local paper. Lynching." Your response? "Saying that lynching and graffiti are equivalent is way over the top."

So it would have been, but I didn't do it.


"As for the others, Fred Phelps -- what does he have to do with Canada? I've never heard any radio preacher in Canada spew hatred about gays."

Phelps has had his pickets right here in Ottawa--didn't you know that? And, while in BC, I heard some fellow named Dobson. Incidentally, I can't believe I left the RCC off my list.

"And gay-re-education --is it forced? Are they rounding them up? Thought not."

Well, you're not entirely correct. Parents have forced their kids into various vicious forms of "de-programming." In one case a few years ago, a lesbian was repeatedly raped, supposedly to change her orientation (the therapy failed). Have you heard about Refuge, which really is a sexual re-education camp, where troubled adolescents are enrolled by their parents?

"Is rejection of a certain behaviour or actions 'hatred'? I don't think so. There are people who spout vitriol, but the Conservative position equal with apartied or deep south treatment of the blacks? Get real."

It's on a continuum.I would argue that not all behaviour is tolerable, of course. But I can't for the life of me understand why so many people persist in their fascination with who sleeps with whom, and draw up categories of what is "right" or "wrong" with respect to consensual sexual behaviour.

"The gay=race position is untenable in this situation. Were you talking jobs, or housing, lynching -- then you'd have a point.:

Vriend was fired for being gay. I have heard of housing being denied to gays. A few years ago in Ottawa, a man was thrown off a bridge by a gang that thought he was gay. Sounds like lynching to me. He's just as dead.

"Marriage is not like those things. It is a legal right, not a human right."

At last. I agree with you! But that's not what was being argued. If the state offers access to an institution, it is a denial of human rights to deny access based on sexual orientation. Or race--interracial marriages were proscribed, once, in many parts of the US, but that issue was argued on the basis of racial discrimination, not a marriage "right." Do you get the difference?

"The purpose of supporting heterosexual partners is based on the idea of procreation, protection and nurture of children (spare me the 'what about infertile people' argument -- we had that discussion long before you visited -- laws are not made to apply to specific circumstances)"

But there do happen to be a lot a childless couples around. On the other hand, gays are adopting kids, and I know of one or two lesbians who have been artifically inseminated. So the distinction you are drawing is an increasingly fuzzy one.

"You are suggesting that 99% of the world is wrong on this, and has been, since the dawn of man -- you are saying that it took the sexual revolution and 'enlightenment' of the '60s generation to know that gay partners are entitled to the same 'status' as married people."

Until relatively recently in Europe, the categories "homosexual" and "heterosexual" didn't even exist. Marriage, too, as we know it, is a relatively recent phenomenon (last few centuries). I would suggest that 99% of the world are not intolerant of gays.

"How can anyone believe that your thinking is the moderate position, and keeping the definition of marriage as it always has been -- is radical? Or hateful?"

My position is live and let live. I would have thought that it is in line with classic anti-statist conservatism, although I am hardly a conservative. But "traditional" marriages haven't suddenly been banned, nor have churches that want to restrict marriage to that definition been forced to act otherwise, despite all the huffing and puffing. All that's happened is that the definition has been widened to include more possibilities.

"IOF, the Shriners, the Salvation Army -- just to name three. They build hospitals, they fund shelters and hospices, the have outreach programs for street people, Aboriginals, unwed mothers. They fund & supply food-banks, womens' shelters, toy drives, 'Come in From the Cold' programs -- all without government assistance or money. Just look around your community - call a local church and ask what sort of outreach programs they have. Each church has its own, and each denomination has many."

I don't doubt it. I was asking whether it added up to a fair share of taxes. But that is a *very* long discussion--don't get me started on the Sally Ann--and might perhaps be saved for another thread.

"You used the word 'victimizer' when I asked about compassion for those with whom you disagree. Am I a victimizer by your definition? I don't agree with SSM."

Depends on what you do about that belief. I must say you have tangentially reminded me of something my ex-mother-in-law once said, when my spouse and I at the time were afraid to invite a Jewish couple over because of the anti-semitism flying around the place. "Dear," she said,"we keep our bigotry in the family!" :)

"I think you're confusing 'hatred' and 'criticism'. Do you sense hatred coming from me? I have no hatred of you for your opinions, nor do I have any hatred toward gays. You, on the other hand, seem pretty angry."

I don't sense hatred from you, but I do sense intolerance. Am I angry about homophobia? Sure I am. I'm actively committed to human rights. But I didn't realize I was expressing anger per se right here. If so, I apologize.

"I'm not going to get into a debate about Bishop Herry's letter, but your answer says you are willing for the churches with which you disagree to 'wither away'. In other words -- you see no need for the government to intervene, and you suspect their congregants will tire of them, and they will naturally fade into history."

Precisely. But speaking of Bishop Henry, now *there's* an angry man. :)

Canadi-anna said...

Superman -- my only concern now that it's law, is that religions and individuals who do not accept it are protected as promised.

Koby -- I'm not condemning anyone. We've had these discussions before. You still don't seem to be able to accept that not everyone is going to think or believe the same way you do. Perhaps yours is the true and enlightened way and I am wrong -- but don't suggest because I think certain actions in certain circumstances are wrong, that I am condemning people.
Everyone makes judgement calls. You say: That said, the attitudes you hold about homosexuality, but not about SSM, need to be stomped out.
You are allowing yourself freedom of thought and conscience, but are hoping to deny me the same freedom that you allow yourself. Isn't that a double standard? Or is it that you are so absolutely positive that you are right, that there can be no differing opinion?

dr dawg -- I did assume you were angry, and I'm sorry. I've re-read your posts, and I would revise that to say you seem 'emotional'.

I agree with your 'live and let live' -- and so long as your statement remains true: But "traditional" marriages haven't suddenly been banned, nor have churches that want to restrict marriage to that definition been forced to act otherwise, despite all the huffing and puffing. All that's happened is that the definition has been widened to include more possibilities. You won't get an argument from me.

Dr. Dawg said...

I plead guilty to "emotional." But I don't take it as a criticism. :)

I'm pleased that we have concluded on a note of agreement.