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  • Where Do We Go From Here?

    by Scott P. Richert

    gay marriage protest

     ”The laws of our land are catching up to the fundamental truth that millions of Americans hold in our hearts: when all Americans are treated as equal, no matter who they are or whom they love, we are all more free.”  —President Barack Obama, June 26, 2013

     ”I will tell you that I don’t believe in gay marriage . . . .”  —Sen. Barack Obama, March 2, 2008

    Yesterday’s Supreme Court decisions regarding the Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA) and California’s Proposition 8 should have come as no surprise to anyone.  The handwriting was on the wall as far back as 2004, when Republicans in the U.S. House of Representatives sponsored a bill that would have removed cases involving DOMA and state laws defining marriage from consideration by the federal courts.  Article III, Section 2, of the U.S. Constitution grants Congress the power to determine the limits of the jurisdiction of the U.S. Supreme Court (and, by extension, all federal courts), and the George W. Bush administration had endorsed similar legislation that removed cases involving the Pledge of Allegiance and the detention of suspected terrorists at Guantanomo Bay from consideration by the federal courts.

    Karl Rove, however, was convinced that initiatives defining marriage, on the ballot in several battleground states that fall, would increase voter turnout to the benefit of President Bush and other Republican candidates.  The Republican-sponsored bill, on the other hand, might have decreased turnout, by convincing voters that the question of “gay marriage” had been addressed at the federal level.  No one would go to the polls just to save the Pledge of Allegiance, so the Pledge could be protected from attacks in the federal courts.  But protecting marriage?  That was a different matter.

    The Bush administration refused to endorse the bill.  And yesterday’s decision gutting DOMA, authored by a Republican appointee to the Supreme Court, was the delayed but inevitable outcome.

    In the wake of a major political defeat, the strong temptation is to double down, to pour all of our resources into further political battles.  But the war over marriage, like the war over abortion, is at heart not a political battle but a cultural one.  If we are to win it, we will not do so through legislation, because, for defenders of traditional culture, legislation is always at best a rear-guard action.  By the time we found it necessary to pass laws defining and defending an institution that extends all the way back to the Garden of Eden, it was already too late for those laws to do anything more than to buy us a few years’ reprieve.

    Of course, rear-guard actions are often necessary.  And in this case in particular, we need to buy ourselves some time.  But time to do what?

    Time to shift the battleground in the war on marriage from the realm of politics to the realm of culture.  Time for Christians to take to heart once again the words of the Psalmist: “Put not your trust in princes; in the sons of men, in whom there is no salvation.”  Because even the best of politicians, wanting to win office or to remain in it once he gets there, is constantly tempted to see which way the wind is blowing.  And the wind in the United States—even among many self-identified Catholics, like Justice Anthony Kennedy, the author of the DOMA decision—is in favor of a moral revolution that is striking at the very foundation of civilization: the family.

    We can win the war on marriage on the battleground of culture, because a society built on a concept of marriage-that-is-not-marriage cannot long endure.  But to shift the battleground, the Church must take the lead—and not the Church generically, but the Catholic Church specifically.

    In the United States, only the Catholic Church has both the proper understanding of marriage and the moral authority to stand up against the political powers that have tried to arrogate to themselves the authority to redefine reality, to declare that the sky is green and the grass is blue.  Only the Catholic Church has the wherewithal to say that the state has forfeited its right to say what marriage is, and what it is not.

    How can the Church do so?  Merely lecturing the state on the proper definition of marriage has not worked, and it will not work in the future.  Speaking truth to power does not work when power hasn’t even the slightest interest in the truth.  In Barack Obama’s America, marriage is merely a word, and words can be redefined at will—as indeed they must be, when they run up against the iron laws of “fairness” and “equality.”

    Despite what President Obama thinks, however, any redefinition of marriage that includes sodomitic relationships is not a “fundamental truth.”  As Pope Francis said of legislation to redefine marriage in Argentina, its author is the Father of Lies.  And any state that wields the sword in defense of lies has forfeited its right to use that sword.

    The U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops, reacting to the DOMA decision, declared that “The Court got it wrong,” and “The federal government ought to respect the truth that marriage is the union of one man and one woman, even where states fail to do so.  The preservation of liberty and justice requires that all laws, federal and state, respect the truth, including the truth about marriage.”  But after this promising start, with its oughts and requires and truths, the USCCB goes on to call for further “public debate,” and for the Court’s decisions to be “reviewed and their implications further clarified.”

    This isn’t the language that is needed.  This isn’t the kind of action that will shift the battleground to one where the Church can win, and win decisively.

    So what kind of action would?  How about this: The bishops could tell the state to go to hell (which is where it is headed anyway).  From now on, Catholics in the United States will be required, as always, to comply with the Church’s conditions for marriage, but the Church in the United States will no longer require, as She does now, that a man and a woman seeking to be married in the Catholic Church receive a marriage license from the state.  If a couple wants to do so, for tax purposes or for other legal advantages, they will be free to do so; but the Church will no longer regard such a license as necessary, much less as having any moral weight.  Marriage within the Church will be divorced entirely from what the state deems to be marriage.

    Such an action would shift the battleground immediately.  It would encourage other Christian denominations to take a stand, one way or the other.  It would force “cultural Catholics,” like Justice Kennedy, to decide where their loyalty lies: with the Church and the truths that She upholds, or with the state and its degraded and degrading culture.  And it would erect an impregnable barrier against the assault that everyone knows is just over the horizon: the attempt of the state to force the Church to perform the impossible, to marry a man to a man and a woman to a woman.

    “How religious institutions define and consecrate marriage has always been up to those institutions,” President Obama declared after yesterday’s ruling.  “Nothing about this decision—which applies only to civil marriages—changes that.”  The bishops of the United States should take him at his word.  If President Obama sees “civil marriage” and marriage as “define[d] and consecrate[d]” by the Church as two different things, the Church should treat them as such.  The very act of doing so would deny legitimacy to “civil marriage” and preserve and protect true marriage better than any law or Supreme Court decision ever could.

    The views expressed by the authors and editorial staff are not necessarily the views of
    Sophia Institute, Holy Spirit College, or the Thomas More College of Liberal Arts.

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    • Paul

      Sorry Scott. You got it wrong. Pope Leo XIII declared that the marriage contract and the Sacrament among Baptized Christians is one-and-the-same. You cannot separate them. To do as you suggest is to grant victory to Mr./Mrs. Luther and their successors.

      What we need is recognition that our religion (Catholicism) gives us unique standing in Marriage governed ONLY by our own Courts (canon law tribunals). The civil rights attached are our rights as citizens. We should not surrender them to the culture simply to protect what is already our own (our Sacrament). Loving v. Virginia established equality of persons based upon race in marriage. Equality based upon religion has yet to be recognized.

      • cminca

        Can you lose your job because you are Catholic? Can you be denied housing because you are Catholic? Can you be denied the right to marry in 38 states because you are Catholic?

        Are you more likely to be homeless because you are Catholic? Are you more likely to suffer from depression and substance abuse because of society’s response to your Catholicism?

        Can you be beat up and have the jury let the perpetrator off because of “Catholic panic”?

        Get back to me when you can show me how your equality has suffered because of religion.

        • Alecto

          What rock have you been hiding under? Catholics, without exception, have suffered more religious bigotry in this country than any other believers. That fact is omitted from public school textbooks. Certain kinds of bigotry are not only acceptable, but still encouraged.

          There is no right to marry, and no right is absolute. Your mistake is in thinking if you persecute Catholics and evangelical Christians long enough, they’ll somehow change fundamental beliefs on marriage. These issues are far more relevant and important to Christians than economic or other issues.

          • cminca

            My ancestors were run out of Europe by the Catholic Church. This, however, happened in the seventeenth and early eighteenth century, and I’d guess you’d tell me, in some version, to “get over it”. And I have.

            So don’t talk to me about 19th century religious bigotry.

            “Certain kinds of bigotry are not only acceptable, but still encouraged. ”

            Really? Perhaps you’d like to show me the citation about some kid singing “Ain’t no Catholics in heaven” or some evangelical preacher talking about “punching the Catholic” out of your kid.

            Tell me about present day, state sanctioned, codified bigotry against your religion.

            Because that is what DOMA was–state sanctioned, codified bigotry against the LGBT community–deny us the same right to legal, civil marriage as other citizens.

            You aren’t being persecuted. Businesses have licenses and there are rules against discrimination. Because if a florist or baker can say “it is against my religion to provide you X because you are Y” then you better be prepared for me to say “it is against my religion to supply services, or hire, or provide housing, to Catholics”.
            I’m not trying to change your religious beliefs. I’m saying that they don’t give you the right to deny me equal access to the civil rights and privileges of citizenship in this country.

            • Ohio

              Look up John Hagee, he is your friend.

              • cminca

                No–I’m not friends with religious extremists of any ilk.

                About the only organized religions I’d trust these days are Amish, Quakers, and Unitarians.

                • Adam__Baum

                  Just irreligious extemists of any ilk.

                • TheodoreSeeber

                  Two out of three of which would reject you for being homosexual.

            • Alecto

              Businesses are private and have the right to reject sales that violate their beliefs. But I’m certain a well-worded letter to Obama will see him leap into action to nationalize all florists and bakeries so you don’t have to “suffer” the agony of lilies of the valley or double-chocolate fudge discrimination! OMG! The Humanity!

              Have you ever thought that maybe your ancestors being run out of Europe led them here, to the greatest free country on the planet, and that perhaps was a blessing in disguise? You would be here now if they hadn’t been. Most people are thankful that circumstances led their families here. That Catholics experienced discrimination based on religion means they built one of the best educational systems in the world. Plus, hospitals, orphanages, aid societies. I’m actually grateful for that. It doesn’t change the facts, but perspective.

              There is no right to marry, and at the very least that is an issue for the states, who have traditionally held jurisdiction over marriage. I am offended not only by your tone, but by your selfish insistence that everyone has been wrong, bigoted and hateful for the past oh, 5,000 years? But YOU, and ONLY YOU are capable of somehow recognizing the truth that better people than both of us failed to do for eons? Everyone else is stupid, prejudiced?

              We object to same sex marriage with good reason. Doesn’t make us hateful or ignorant or superstitious. It makes us opposed to your beliefs. Clearly you have a tough time being respectful of anyone’s opinions on anything.

              • cminca

                Businesses, whether public or private, have licenses to operate.

                And they are required to follow the federal, state, and local laws–including the laws against discrimination.

                There is a right to marriage in this country. Don’t like it? Get over it.

                “We object to same sex marriage with good reason.” Explain it without using religion. (And since marriage has changed over the years–tradition doesn’t count. And since the CC acknowledges marriage among people who can’t conceive–children don’t count either.)
                I’ll be waiting.

                You’re offended by my selfishness? You consider a demand for equal rights to be selfish?

                I’m offended. I’m offended by ANY group that believes it has a right to determine or define the equality of ANY other group in a secular, plural, democratic republic. Whether that be based on sex, color, creed, eyecolor, origin of birth, or any other characteristic–including the CHOICE of religion.

                I didn’t choose to be gay. You choose to be a catholic. I’m being tolerant of your choices.

                Clearly you have a tough time being respectful of anyone’s inherent characteristic. And there is a word for that.

                Sorry if that truth offends you.

                • Alecto

                  Be honest, your intention in coming to this site was to insult, provoke and demean Catholics. It’s nothing new. The only inherent characteristic I see in people like you is your bully factor. You are tolerant of no one and nothing.

                  I don’t need to use any religion to oppose same sex marriage. You cannot admit the truth, that it isn’t simply Catholicism that opposes it, it’s every religion, every culture, the majority of countries, every ethnic group for thousands of years has understood that marriage is between one man and one woman. And yet, you, in your arrogance, persist because YOU want what YOU want, and YOU are willing to destroy society to get it? Grow up.

                  You may not “choose” to have same sex attraction, but you choose to engage in the behavior. I can promise you this, if evidence surfaces to demonstrate that inherent genetic characteristic, millions and millions of women will be visiting Planned Parenthood to dispose of more babies.

          • Paul McGuire

            Please explain what you mean “They were not allowed to attend public school.” I am curious about that. I thought it was just certain families that chose to avoid public school not that anyone was not allowed to attend. If possible, a lengthy article explaining this phenomenon would be helpful.

            A recent article on Patheos helps illustrate why I don’t believe cries of persecution by American Catholics.
            http://www.patheos.com/blogs/publiccatholic/2013/06/christian-persecution-6-quick-takes-from-around-the-globe/
            Note the list shows both actual persecution (kidnapping, violence) right along with imagined persecution that is now all it takes for religious to cry persecution. People complain about re-definition of marriage but I say stop trying to re-define persecution. If American Catholics ever actually suffer persecution nobody will listen because there has already been so much crying over inability of florists to refuse service to same-sex couples.

            • Alecto

              Try a review of 19th century American history, right up through mass immigration (predominantly Catholic) of the late 19th and early 20th century. Henry Ford would not hire them in management, many Protestants still believe that Catholics have cloven hooves, Baptists have taught that for decades. And, as fond as I am of our Founding Fathers, they, too had anti-Catholic sentiments, chiefly, but not exclusively, Thomas Jefferson.

        • Tantem Ergo

          Marriage isn’t a right.

          • cminca

            According to the Supreme Court it is.

            • TheodoreSeeber

              Then why did they overturn Doma and why did Justice Kennedy specifically say “There is no right to marriage in the Constitution”?

              • cminca

                While Kennedy did say “”There is no right to marriage in the Constitution” and was right to say it, it is simply because the constitution does not say there is a right for ANYONE to marry. The document does not refer to it.
                But the laws of America, and the rights American’s enjoy, are based on laws and the legitimacy of the laws based on our constitution. And it is up to the SCOTUS to determine that legitimacy, and therefore our rights

                “Marriage is one of the ‘basic civil rights of man,’ fundamental to our very existence and survival.”

                Warren in Loving vs. Virginia
                Therefore, according to the SCOTUS, Marriage is a right to Americans.

                • Adam__Baum

                  *

                • Alecto

                  That post reveals a dangerous and misguided misunderstanding and misattribution of rights, the role of the courts, or the theory and structure of our government.

                  • cminca

                    No, it refutes the assertion and you don’t like that.

                    • Alecto

                      If it actually refuted anything, I wouldn’t, but it doesn’t. When you write something like “the laws of America…are based on laws and the legitimacy of the laws based on our constitution.” Well, I just have to point out how absurd that is. It’s circular at best and inane at worst.

                      • cminca

                        It does when you selectively edit it.
                        The second “laws” remark was referencing the phrase you edited out above.
                        But I’m arguing intellectual honestly with someone who clearly can’t comprehend the concept.

                • TheodoreSeeber

                  So SCOTUS can define murdering the unborn as a right, and there’s nothing we can do about it.

                  Long Live the Great God SCOTUS!

            • Adam__Baum

              According to the Supreme Court, “three generations of idiots are enough” (Buck v. Bell). Then again, there’s Plessy v. Ferguson, Korematsu vs. the United States, Roe v. Wade and Kelo v New London. Care to continue to defend the authority and inerrancy of the SCOTUS any more?

        • Adam__Baum

          Be gone, Satan.

        • Adam__Baum

          You can be denied the right to marry based upon mental illness, consanguinity and age, even if the two individuals are male and female. If it’s a “right”, then all restrictions must fall and the only qualification is the mutual consent of the applicants.

          • cminca

            You have a right to bear arms, but it can be denied based on past felony conviction.

            Are you claiming that bearing arms is no longer a right because “all restrictions must fall”?

            Your argument doesn’t hold up.

            • TheodoreSeeber

              Yes, regulations against guns based on mental illness are in direct violation of the 2nd Amendment to the Constitution, and since they have been allowed, invalidate the Constitution itself.

              • cminca

                So the constitution of the US has, according to you, been invalidated.

                Well–thanks for that information. I’m sure all of us are interested in knowing this.

                Tell me–have you decided to print your own money and stop paying taxes?

      • Scott Richert

        Paul, you’ve misunderstood what I’m saying. I agree entirely with Leo XIII, and I urge everyone to read Arcanum and take it to heart: http://www.vatican.va/holy_father/leo_xiii/encyclicals/documents/hf_l-xiii_enc_10021880_arcanum_en.html

        Your mistake is in thinking that “civil marriage” is the same as the marriage contract. It is not. Here’s the relevant passage from Arcanum:

        “Let no one, then, be deceived by the distinction which some civil jurists have so strongly insisted upon – the distinction, namely, by virtue of which they sever the matrimonial contract from the sacrament, with intent to hand over the contract to the power and will of the rulers of the State, while reserving questions concerning the sacrament of the Church. A distinction, or rather severance, of this kind cannot be approved; for certain it is that in Christian marriage the contract is inseparable from the sacrament, and that, for this reason, the contract cannot be true and legitimate without being a sacrament as well. For Christ our Lord added to marriage the dignity of a sacrament; but marriage is the contract itself, whenever that contract is lawfully concluded.”

        In other words, the Church does not and never has depended on the state to legitimize the marriage contract. Today, we hear that word “contract,” and we think immediately of positive law. Leo, however, doesn’t make that error. The marriage contract is concluded by the spouses, and the state is unnecessary to the process.

        Leo again: “Christ, therefore, having renewed marriage to such and so great excellence, commended and entrusted all the discipline bearing upon these matters to His Church.”

        That’s “all the discipline,” governing sacrament and contract. I’m simply suggesting that the Church take Leo’s words to heart, and tell the state that it no longer has any role at all in the governance of marriage.

      • Adam__Baum

        Actually the present tumult demonstrates a major problem with Luther’s assertion that marriage was a civil affair to be regulated by the state, and not a sacrament.

        • Alecto

          Excellent point.

        • Scott Richert

          Exactly. Catholics who insist on keeping the state involved in marriage are much closer to Luther than they are to Leo XIII.

          • Adam__Baum

            The problem is the genie is out of the bottle. The state is never going to give up the power involved with civil marriage, if for no other reason the bar would lose an awful lot of revenue and the state is principally staffed by lawyers,

            • Alecto

              “…principally staffed by lawyers.”

              Much to everyone’s chagrin.

        • Bono95

          Exactly, and Luther’s “marriage” wasn’t valid by any laws, Church or State.

    • Pingback: Where Do We Go From Here? | Catholic Canada

    • james

      What you got wrong Scott is to save marriage you need to encourage the younger generation to marry stop cohabitating and having children out of wedlock instead you and your vipers scapegoat gays one to three percent of the population to avoid the real problem heterosexuals are the causing the demise of the west they are the 98percent aborting divorcing remarrying out wedlock dead beat dads. Vipers serpents…. Home of the lizards and spiders… Whited sepulcher

      • Rock St. Elvis

        It’s not that gays “aren’t the real problem” and that shacked up straights are. They are both problems, and the normalization of sodomy makes it that much harder to convince those reluctant to listen that there is a time and place for sex.

      • Scott Richert

        James, how do you figure I got that wrong? I agree entirely: The younger generation should stop cohabiting and having children out of wedlock, and should marry instead. That has nothing, however, to do with the fact that the sky is blue and the grass is green, and a man cannot marry a man. Words have meaning; arbitrarily redefining them does not change that fact.

        • mitchw7959

          Let me know how your jihad against cohabitation is going with GOP legislators.

          I’m sure they’ll just love to propose bills to force cohabiting younger straight couples to live apart, to reverse Griswold v. Connecticut so there aren’t any pesky condoms around, and to reinstate laws against private, consensual behavior which both LGBT citizens and straights enjoy.

          Come to think of it, perhaps that’s your fundamental(ist) problem: being unable to bear the thought that someone, somewhere is experiencing and enjoying a pleasure that by your own free will and faith choices you deny to yourself.

          • Ford Oxaal

            Pleasure is fleeting, and often leads to excessive and dangerous adolescent-like behavior. It tends towards the vicious. Meanwhile, it is the next generation that suffers horribly from a lack of disciplined adults. Our society wallows in its fleshy pleasures.

    • john

      Scott, this is a fine article, but your last paragraph troubled me–the bishops of the US should take our president “at his word”? Perhaps you meant: the bishops should challenge him to live up to his word. Just as Hitler proverbially rose to power “legally,” the government of the Prince of This World is perfectly capable of assaulting the Church through 1,000 “legal” papercuts that would appear to live up to his absurd pronouncement.

      • Scott Richert

        John, what I’m saying is that the bishops of the United States should grab the bull by the horns, and throw President Obama’s words back in his face. He sees “civil marriage” as separate from what the Church calls marriage? Fine: The Church should make it clear that he is correct, because “civil marriage” is no longer marriage.

        • cminca

          Ok–so according to you the CC will only say “married” if you are married in the CC.

          Do you know what effect that will have on society? Absolutely none. We will continue to be married whether the CC recognizes it or not. Because the CC doesn’t hold the monopoly on marriage, on language, or on God.

          So have your temper tantrum. Hold your breath, stamp your feet, turn blue in the face.

          The rest of us will just keep living our lives, paying our taxes, taking care of our kids, and worshiping any God we see fit in any manner we see fit.

          That is the nature of a pluralistic, secular, democratic republic.

          Whether you like it or not.

          • TheodoreSeeber

            Then perhaps we shouldn’t have a “pluralistic, secular, democratic republic”

            • cminca

              You’re free to leave.

              • Alecto

                You first.

              • TheodoreSeeber

                No, actually, I’m not. And that’s part of the problem- the extension of the American system through treaty to the entire world.

              • Adam__Baum

                So are you.

          • Bob

            Obviously, the “God you see fit” to worship is not the One of Judeo-Christian history or tradition. As long as you admit to not following that God, then I see the linear logic of your argument. Perhaps you worship the Roman gods of the Capitolome Triad (Jupiter, Juno and Minerva)? They might be your gods, cminca, because they probably would have approved of sodomy and homosexual unions. Or perhaps the god Pan (the god of sexeual disorder and perversion), that might be the deity you worship. Luckily for you there are many false gods for you to follow. But because the God of Christianity would always deem immoral sodomy and gay marriage and never approve of these acts, He is not your god, cminca.

            • Paul McGuire

              If you were right, then other Christian denominations would not celebrate same-sex marriages. However, some of the more liberal denominations that worship the same God have no problem with same-sex couples.

              • Bob

                Incorrect. With their baptism and belief in Jesus Christ, they are Christians. They are however, misinterpreting the true, authentic teachings on gay marriage. Only the Catholic Church started by Jesus and given the authority by Christ Himself (Matt 16) and through the 2000 years of apostolic succession has the ability to “bind and loose” on teachings of faith and morals as if that teaching were coming from the lips of Christ Himself. And through this divinely endowed authoritative teaching the Church proclaims that sodomy and gay marriage are disordered and immoral.

                So in essence, because these liberal Christian denominations do not have the teaching authority given to them by Christ as contained in the magisterium of the Catholic Church (which contains the fullness of the Truth of Jesus Christ), they are teaching in error on gay marriage.

                But you already knew All that, Paul. From your other postings, I’ve noticed how you enjoy tossing out false syllogisms and canards to try and mislead.

              • Adam__Baum

                Then go there. As for me, the fact that other denominations approve of same sex relationsahips merely serves to illustrate how defective their ecclesial governance is at identifying and rejecting heresy. Of course, still others reject same sex unions, but you only cite the ones that honor disorder.

              • Tony

                Other Christian denominations no longer even believe that Jesus was the Son of God. So they are no longer really Christians, but flimsy deists with a Christian flavoring. Besides, does anybody really believe that the Jesus who said, “You have heard, thou shalt not commit adultery, but I tell you that any man who LOOKS with lust upon a woman has already committed adultery with her in his heart,” and the Jesus who said, “From the beginning it was not so, for they were created male and female, and it is written that for this reason a man shall leave his father and mother and cleave unto his wife, and they two shall be one flesh — therefore what God has joined together, let no man put asunder,” that THAT Jesus who goes BEYOND condemning fornication and adultery, to condemn even what was legal divorce at the time, AND to condemn even the lust of the heart — that he would be all peachy-keen with sodomy? Are you out of your mind, or are you just being dishonest?

                • Paul McGuire

                  I would say neither. In the biblical times it was not understood that sexual orientation was innate. Of course many here would disagree that it is but since it is said “it is not good for man to be alone” then to me it follows that gay men should be permitted to form romantic relationships and find those blessed by the Church.

                  History shows that it doesn’t turn out well when gay men marry straight women. I think Jesus would rejoice in the love of two men when it endures for years.

                  Just because I recognize certain teachings of the church doesn’t mean I consider them a good fit for my life. I plan to eventually marry my boyfriend now that it is again legal in California. While I am disappointed that I won’t be able to marry in a Catholic church, I am thankful for the denominations I am exploring where I can celebrate that union.

                  • Ford Oxaal

                    Come on,Paul! Not *that* kind of ‘love’! Christian friendship, yes, yukky yuk, no. Besides, you think you are getting no sex now, wait until you are ‘married’. The whole love = sex thing is beyond creepy.

                  • Adam__Baum

                    We all have sinful impulses.
                    Kleptomania is “innate”, but you are still expected to control your impulses.
                    Again I must ask. Why are you here? Disappointment comes as a surprise. How are you possibly surprised?

                    • Paul McGuire

                      Saying I’m disappointed and saying I’m surprised is two separate things. It doesn’t come as a surprise but it can still be disappointing. I’m tired of people comparing gay men’s attractions to men with certain impulses that everyone would agree should be resisted. There is a big difference between stealing, murder, or other things and the love of two men.

                      • Adam__Baum

                        You can only be disappointed if you expect a different result, and that would be as logical as expecting to fall upward.
                        I wish you knew exactly how insulting it was that you have the audacity to compare your sodomy to what what I share with my wife.

                  • Alecto

                    Paul, have you considered the possibility of making your life fit your beliefs? No one here believes that being Catholic is easy, but because we have faith in something, we seek, voluntarily, to live up to the difficulties of being in harmony with the teachings. It takes humility, sacrifice and practice.

                    Jesus was celibate. He was also a Jew, and he was faithful to Jewish law, which had exceptionally harsh penalties for homosexuality, I believe the penalty was death. There is no scriptural or any basis to believe that Jesus condoned or would ever have condoned same sex marriage. Anymore than he condoned adultery, fornication, etc…. Revisit that statement that “Jesus would rejoice in the love of 2 men…”. He is wounded by any sin.

                • Charles

                  Jesus said NOTHING about homosexuality. He was speaking against divorce and unfaithfulness to a partner in the passages you quote. It is you who is being dishonest and putting words into Jesus’ mouth.

                  • beriggs

                    No one seems to read the latter part of Matthew 19, which is Jesus teaching on marriage. He speaks of those incapable of marriage, refering to those who cannot achieve the one flesh union required for the ratification of the covenant of marriage. There are those who are made so by accident, by birth and by choice. Homosexual acts do not constitute the one flesh union, although body parts by be manipulated to obtain sexual release. If indeed one is born homosexual, and unable to attain the one flesh union as perfectly designed male and female bodies are, then one is incapable of marriage. There are certainly relationships of varying depth and fidelity, but they do not fulfill the design for marriage.

            • cminca

              Evidently the censor did not like my first response.

              Let me just state that you are wrong. As Paul points out, there are Judeo-Christian traditions that do have SSM.

              As for the rest of your rant about real gods and fake gods and who’s god is better than who’s and who god loves and who he doesn’t–

              well, Bob, rant all you want. But I’ll just say that it takes extreme hubris to believe YOU know what God does or doesn’t think.

              I’ll leave that up to Her, thank you.

              • Bob

                See my comment below on other Christian denominations……

                I am ranting? I don’t think so.

                As you see, my point is that someone claiming to believe in a god, and also in gay marriage, cannot believe in the same God of Christianity. So therefore must believe in a different god such as pan. It’s the theory of non contradiction. The Catholic Church’s teaching authority (once again, see my other comment) has for 2000 years always taught that homosexual acts are immoral and disordered. One would contradict themselves if they said they where Christian and therefore also say gay marriage is moral.

                • cminca

                  That is assuming that the CC is right.
                  That is an assumption you have no evidence to prove.

                  • Bob

                    That makes no sense.

                    Plenty of evidence. But you’re not here to learn of the Truths of the Catholic faith, so essentially, it would be (as it always would be with you) a waste of time to show you.

                    • cminca

                      No, I’m not hear to learn what the CC preaches as “Truth”. I’m here discussing the rights of ALL Americans to be treated equality under the law.

                      • Bob

                        Man cannot change God’s laws on nature and morality. Man cannot change, edit, or ammend the Ten Commandments. The sad part is the Supreme Court is reinforcing earthly, human laws that go against God’s laws. Those that live under God’s laws will never recognize gay marriage. Not because they’re predjudice or bigots, but because they have chosen to listen to the laws of their Creator that He infused in to man’s very essence and being.

                      • cminca

                        “…but because they have chosen to listen to the laws of their Creator that He infused in to man’s very essence and being.”
                        Do you understand that you live in a country where NOT EVERYONE BELIEVES WHAT YOU DO?
                        That your feelings don’t get to dictate the secular, civil laws of a pluralist democratic republic?
                        That we have a constitution that, at its essence, is intended to make ALL tax paying, law abiding Americans equal under the law?
                        What part of yesterday’s decision changed, edited, or amended the 10 commandments? And why should a government NOT based on Judeo-Christian belief care?

                      • Bob

                        6. “Thou shalt not commit adultery.”

                      • cminca

                        Which decision was about adultery?

                      • Bob

                        I know it’s useless to ask you this without getting an uneducated, atheistic, sarcastic response but……

                        Do you have comprehension or understanding of the natural law? If you do, explain to me your understanding of it?

                        And taking it even further, the natural law and it’s relevance to the US Constitution?

                      • cminca

                        Natural law–laws understood to be stemming from nature and therefore universal.

                        So now you are going back to your statement “Man cannot change God’s laws on nature and morality.”

                        And I will ask precisely which of these supposed “natural” laws or the constitutional laws based on them were changed yesterday?

                        The natural law that “all men are created equal” as it states in the DoI? That they are “endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness.”? Again–DoI. Has my unalienable right to the pursuit of happiness or equality somehow affected your “life, liberty, or pursuit of Happiness”?

                        From the Constitution—
                        “We the People of the United States, in Order to form a more perfect Union, establish Justice, insure domestic Tranquility, provide for the common defence, promote the general Welfare, and secure the Blessings of Liberty to ourselves and our Posterity, do ordain and establish this Constitution for the United States of America.”

                        Are not these goals the result of “natural laws”? Were any of yesterday’s decisions in conflict with establishing Justice, insuring domestic Tranquility (to those to whom it had been denied?), or promoting the general Welfare? (Remember–there is no credible evidence that children less well in SS households. Just bigotry.)

                        Getting back to God’s and natural laws–if the censor of homosexuality was so important why do you think it wasn’t one of the 10 commandments? I mean–look at Newt Gingrich for example. He’s committed adultery twice, that we know of–but most Christians would claim he is more righteous than a SS couple.

                        Let’s look at “natural” meaning “the plumbing doesn’t work therefore it must be wrong”. Sorry–I can’t buy that. Because if it was so unnatural why is it found is hundreds of species. And if it so unnatural and so dangerous–why isn’t the instinct in the animal kingdom to kill animals with SS attraction. Yet it is only the human animal–and only those with the benefit of organized Western religion post AD 200–that has a history of systemized, codified persecution of gays.

                        Let’s move on to the First Amendment–”Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances.”

                        If you are planning on claiming that SSM affects your first amendment rights you’d better be prepared to demonstrate how. I want to know how SSM has prohibited your free exercise of your religion or abridged your freedom of speech. Has the federal government tried to jail your priest or shut down your church?

                        So tell me–did my answer come off as uneducated? Sarcastic?

                        As for atheistic–I don’t think you’ll find any of my postings here claiming I don’t believe in God. I have a very personal, very active relationship with a higher power. I just don’t think it is any of your business.

                        I will say there is one piece of scripture I definitely agree with: “And when you pray, you shall not be as the hypocrites are: for they love to pray standing in the synagogues and in the corners of the streets, that they may be seen of men.”

              • Bono95

                No human being can ever claim to know the whole mind of God, but God has revealed to us many of his thoughts in the Bible and in Sacred Tradition. Take a look at the story of Sodom and Gommorah. I think that’s a pretty clear indication of God’s thoughts on SSM.

                • cminca

                  According to YOUR interpretation.

                  Others interpret it differently. There isn’t even agreement on translation.

                  And it could merely been a historical explanation of a natural disaster as part of the oral tradition of a nomadic culture who didn’t understand the phenomenon it was witnessing.

                  (After all–do we actually believe it when some fundamentalist preacher blames gays for–well, pick any of the disasters we’ve been blamed for–Andrew, Hugo, Katrina, 9/11, Sandy–take your pick.)

                  And since Catholics routinely throw out particulars of the old testament in a convoluted attempt to justify their cherry picking of what to believe and follow, you really aren’t proving any “revelation” with that one.

                  • Bob

                    So you believe that Jesus wanted thousands of diametrically opposite interpretations of his word, for example on the story of Sodom? He really wanted His followers 2000 years later to be that confused? Or did He give one Church the authority over His word to “bind and loose?” (Psssssssst…..! It’s the Catholic Church!)

                    • cminca

                      What Jesus was referring to is explained in Romans 1:18-32.

                      Romans 1:18-23 (New American Standard Bible)

                      Unbelief and Its Consequences:
                      18For (A)the wrath of God is revealed from heaven against all ungodliness and unrighteousness of men who (B)suppress the truth in unrighteousness,
                      19because (C)that which is known about God is evident within them; for God made it evident to them.

                      20For (D)since the creation of the world His invisible attributes, His eternal power and divine nature, have been clearly seen, (E)being understood through what has been made, so that they are without excuse.

                      21For even though they knew God, they did not [a]honor Him as God or give thanks, but they became (F)futile in their speculations, and their foolish heart was darkened.

                      22(G)Professing to be wise, they became fools,

                      23and (H)exchanged the glory of the incorruptible God for an image in the form of corruptible man and of birds and four-footed animals and [b]crawling creatures.

                      Footnotes:
                      a.Romans 1:21 Lit glorify
                      b.Romans 1:23 Or reptiles
                      Cross references:
                      A.Romans 1:18 : Rom 5:9; Eph 5:6; Col 3:6
                      B.Romans 1:18 : 2 Thess 2:6
                      C.Romans 1:19 : Acts 14:17; 17:24-ff
                      D.Romans 1:20 : Mark 10:6
                      E.Romans 1:20 : Job 12:7-9; Ps 19:1-6; Jer 5:21
                      F.Romans 1:21 : 2 Kin 17:15; Jer 2:5; Eph 4:17
                      G.Romans 1:22 : Jer 10:14; 1 Cor 1:20
                      H.Romans 1:23 : Deut 4:16-18; Ps 106:20; Jer 2:11; Acts 17:29

                      Looks to me like there might be a different interpretation than yours.

                      “Or did He give one Church the authority over His word to “bind and loose?”"

                      The truth, according to the CC. From a book, edited by the CC. As interpreted, by the CC. As quoted by the CC.

                      And you expect me to regard this as unbiased?

                      • Bob

                        And you believe you have been given the authority from Christ to properly interpret scripture? I can find ten other people to interpret that passage differently than you. Who is right, and who is wrong? Or did Christ first give us a Church and teaching office that would be guided by the Holy Spirit that wrote Romans and therefore is the proper interpreter of its own writing?

                      • Bob

                        ……and you do understand the scripture you are quoting (Romans) is part of the canon of scripture put together by the Catholic Church? You do understand that the Catholic Church gave us the bible that you are trying to interpret?

                      • cminca

                        No, I’m acknowledging two things–
                        1. There are multiple interpretations of the same document
                        and
                        2. Catholics using a book edited by Catholics to prove the legitimacy of Catholic doctrine based on Catholic interpretation of the book edited by Catholics to prove the legitimacy of Catholic doctrine based on Catholics using a book edited…..
                        See the problem?

                      • Bob

                        Sure…..there are multiple interpretations, many of tHem incorrect interpretations.

                        So you use scripture in one post to defend your arguments and now you attack scripture as being illegitimate in another?

                        Cminca, you are like a truck going downhill without brakes or a severing wheel

                        Your embarrassing yourself, again.

                      • cminca

                        I didn’t attack scripture. And I never called scripture illegitimate.
                        Reading for comprehension. Try it.
                        I attacked the idea that scripture is used as “proof” of a Catholic interpretation of “scripture”.
                        It is the same game Cheney pulled when his office leaked bogus information to the NY Times, and then Cheney went on a Sunday morning news show and used the NY Times article as the basis for his bogus assertion.

                  • Bono95

                    “My” interpretation is the interpretation of the current Pope, all 265 of the Popes before him, the Magesterium, and of all faithful Catholics.

                    And of course I do not believe that people with SSA are responsible for any natural disasters, not leastly because I am not a Fundamentalist.

          • Tony

            You can’t be married, because it is a biological and logical impossibility, any more than you can marry your dog, or a dead person, or an idea, or an artichoke. Now of course the next stage of decadence will be polygamy. And pluralism? Give me a break. When all the schools are the same, the mass entertainment is the same, the newspapers are the same … The only pluralism nowadays has to do with the zipper, and even that is all the same. And it is no democratic republic, either. A single person’s vote makes no more difference now to the “culture” than would a grain of sand to a mountain.

            • cminca

              Logical impossibility?
              Tell that to 12 states, the District of Columbia, and more nations every day.
              (And when a dog, a dead person, an idea, or an artichoke can sign a marriage license I’ll be working to get them the rights to marriage too.)

              • Ford Oxaal

                Catholic Darwinism is the bottom line here, regardless of this tragic nonsense. Families will proliferate — caricatures of family will eventually fall out of fashion. In the meantime these caricatures of family will harm children, depriving them of equal opportunity in the process, however many so-called ‘studies’ rationalize the irrational.

            • Ford Oxaal

              The country is turning into a homogenous corporate chain strip mall with suburban amorphous blobs creeping around consuming disposable garbage. Is this what the ‘progressives’ mean by equality?

    • publiusnj

      The author’s idea of telling Catholics that they need a church marriage but
      that a civil marriage or no civil marriage is up to them, is a very interesting
      one. The purported blessings the State confers on “marriage” are not as great
      as they may at first blush seem, certainly under the tax laws which are more
      favorable to “heads of household” (better per person standard deductions and
      better tax bracketing) than they are to married couples when both members work
      and earn not too disproportionate wages.

      For example, a family with a father, mother and four children and a
      combined income (equally split) of $80,000 is far better off under the tax
      laws with a church marriage but no civil marriage. If they set up sufficiently
      distinct “households” for both parents to claim two of the kids and then file
      their taxes as head of household and each claim two kids for exemption and
      Earned Income Credit, they will have far lower tax bills than if they file
      married joint. Simply put, the Federal Government punishes intact married
      couples by: 1) allowing a married couple to earn only $5000 more than a single
      individual for purposes of the Earned Income Credit; and 2) by giving the Heads
      of Households more generous tax bracketing and standard deductions than the per
      person share each married person gets under the MFJ tax/bracketing and standard
      deductions.

      Now, the Government may not like the idea of people splitting their
      statuses as single or married depending on whether they are addressing the
      demands of Caesar or God, but the Government must realize that it is a question
      of choice, and Catholics are as entitled to their choices as anybody else.

      • cminca

        You’ve covered taxes. What you haven’t covered is the (estimated) $300K+ it takes in legal fees to cover all the other benefits of a legally recognized marriage.

        • publiusnj

          That is propaganda. The State uses the tax laws as its principal means of punishing disfavored groups and benefiting favored groups. A single mom or dad gets up to $5000 a year in EIC welfare so long as he/she earns less than @$40,000but a married couple loses any EIC credit if their average earnings exceed @$22,500. So, the State does not favor marriage any more.

          • Adam__Baum

            That’s just one example. There plenty of parts of the tax code where there limits that do not double for married filing jointly.
            Long ago I concluded that the tax code has very little to do with raising legitimate and sufficient revenues for government, and everything to do with controlling and dividing the citizenry.

            • publiusnj

              You’re precisely right. The highest bracket (39.6% + the Medicare surcharge, of course) begins at $400,000 for singles and $450,000 for couples; so couples with high incomes are also discouraged from marrying, at least in the eyes of the law. Going through all of the brackets in my initial post, though, would have been too long

      • givelifeachance2

        The other side of the coin is to see that this tax treatment is the Government subsidizing the mother to stay at home and nurture children rather than as a punishment inflicted on double-job-dipping couples. Societal benefits from the homeworking mom are too numerous to list. This type of family bolstering is the only reason state marriage (should) exist. The approach of the Church should not be to abandon the children affected by state marriages, as too many dioceses have abandoned orphans to homosexual couples by closing down adoption agencies – but to FIGHT for all children, that they may prosper in true families.

        We don’t say the Church should only stand against abortion of Catholic children…we want the Church to stand for the life of *every* child. So must it be for the family.

        • cminca

          So you are saying that a only a stay-at-home mom (as opposed to a stay-at-home dad) is capable of nurturing children? That is not proven by the research.

          REAL research exists that shows children raised by same-sex couples are as well rounded as those raised by hetrosexual couples.

          “This type of family bolstering is the only reason state marriage (should) exist.”
          So you are stating that the societal benefits of marriage–for example survivor benefits or inheritance rights–should be denied to any marriage that doesn’t produce children? I’d like confirmation on that stance please.
          Just because gays don’t conform to your definition of “family” doesn’t mean they aren’t families.
          And what the REAL research shows is that children are best raised in a stable two parent family–no matter what the sex of the parents.

          • givelifeachance2

            Hey, there’s a reason they call it “matrimony” – “mothermaking”. It takes a father to make a mother and vice versa and it takes one of each to make a baby. Test-tube-contrived families are only useful tools for the totalitarian state to extinguish parental rights for everyone.

            It is precisely because apples don’t conform to the definition of oranges that they AREN’T oranges.

            • cminca

              You didn’t answer my question–although that’s not a surprise.
              “Totalitarian state”? Isn’t that exactly what you want? The CC defining secular laws?

              • Alecto

                Please, go take your meds now.

              • Tony

                Blitheringly stupid — the stupid remark of somebody who has never read a book or even a good magazine article on marriage, written before the day before yesterday. What we want is SOME reconsideration of the awful decisions regarding marriage in the last 50 years. Or do you think that the Catholic Church was in charge of the United States all that time?
                I am also stunned by the cruelty and the selfishness and the see-no-evil stupidity of people who wantonly deprive children of either a mother or a father. Would I have wanted to be raised by two women? Neither of whom would have known a damned thing about what it is like to be a boy, or what it means to be a man? Both of whom I could have pounded by age twelve — by stinking age twelve? Deprive me of a father, just because YOU haven’t matured well enough to learn how to live with and to love a man, after the ordinary pattern of nature?

                • cminca

                  Guess what Tony? The CC doesn’t get to define the laws of this country.

                  As for the idiocy of your remarks about being raised by two women–

                  Start here:

                  http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FSQQK2Vuf9Q

                  Then Google Zach Wahl and see if your life stacks up against what he’s done in his short life.

                  Don’t bother answering that–based on your post I already know. Anyone who would talk about pounding a woman, let alone their mother—well the example of the father that taught you to be a “man” (or at least what you consider a man) is more than obvious.

                  • Charles

                    I absolutely agree, cminca. Tony’s post is hideous and shows a thoroughly unhealthy and abusive attitude toward women. If I were to die, I would rather my wife marry another woman with the sense and wisdom to help raise our son than that she marry a man who regards women with the bullying contempt that Tony does. What a horrible experience for any child, boy or girl, to have a man in their life who fantasizes about “pounding” women. Ugh!!! I can say with pride that it would not have occurred to my now teenage boy to “pound” his mother (or any other woman) — not at 12, not at any age!

                    • JefZeph

                      To infer from Tony’s words that he “fantasizes about “pounding” women” truly is hideous in its misrepresentation. What do your fantasies about your wife marrying another woman say about your mental or emotional health?
                      Though it is understandable that you would expect her to marry a woman. After being with you all these years, she would be likely to stick with what works.

                      • Charles

                        You have nothing but insults. You must know that your “arguments” have failed.

                      • JefZeph

                        You don’t know the difference between an argument and an objection? Interesting that you are “insulted” by the same tactics you think nothing of using against another.

                    • Bono95

                      NOWHERE in his post did Tony say that he WANTED or was TEMPTED to pound any women. He was simply making the point that he could win a fight with most grown women by the time he was 12, and far more importantly, he was defending true, traditional marriage, by giving an example of how ridiculous, impossible, and unhealthy it is for a boy to have 2 moms, who, however kind and caring they are, and however well-behaved he was, would not be able to give him as good and wholesome of an upbringing as he would get from having 1 mom and 1 dad. The same goes for a girl with 1 mom and 1 dad as opposed to 2 dads. Tony just used the example a boy with 2 moms because he himself is male. He intended absolutely no harm whatsoever to any women.

                      • Kate

                        Craig, don’t you realize a lot of kids have NO mom or NO dad. Whatever you think of SSM, don’t you think it’s better for a kid to have two parents than one? There is greater financial stability with two parents. One can be a full-time caregiver while the other works. And so what if Tony or any other kid could beat up a woman? Who cares? What normal person even thinks about that? It’s an unhealthy thing to even consider.

                      • Bono95

                        I do indeed believe that kids do a lot better with 2 parents than with one, but I also believe that the best possible parental arrangement is 1 mother and 1 father, and such an arrangement is nearly always very possible if not also very easy to obtain.

                        And all people, even the most normal, have disturbing thoughts pop into their heads from time to time, often without their volition or desire. What makes the person who has the thought healthy or unhealthy is how he deals with the thoughts. A healthy, normal person, of whom I believe Tony is an example, will make every effort to forget that thought and will never put it into action.

                        BTW, my name is not Craig.

                      • Kate

                        “And all people, even the most normal, have disturbing thoughts pop into their heads from time to time, often without their volition or desire.”

                        Given the context of SSM, I think you’re saying most people are at least somewhat bisexual? And that they should vigorously repress any sexual ambiguity they experience? This is kind of sad. Repressed homosexuality is at the root of anti-gay bigotry. People who do not accept and understand the full spectrum of their own God-given sexuality can never hope to accept or understand the sexuality of another person. They will be forever entrapped in rigid, infantile stereotypes, fighting a forever losing battle with their own desires.

                      • Adam__Baum

                        “People who do not accept and understand the full spectrum of their own God-given sexuality can never hope to accept or understand the sexuality of another person.”

                        Who the hell made you able to speak for other people?

                      • Bono95

                        First of all, not all disturbing thoughts are sex-related, and even if they were, that is not an excuse to hold them or act on them. If it’s OK for a person to entertain or carry out bisexual or homosexual thoughts, then what’s to stop him from entertaining or carrying out murderous, slanderous, or deceitful thoughts? My point was that everyone sometimes has bad things, sexual and otherwise, pop into their heads, but good people will push those thoughts away.

                    • Adam__Baum

                      “I would rather my wife marry another woman with the sense and wisdom to help raise our son than that she marry a man who regards women with the bullying contempt that Tony does.”

                      False choice. You placed a constraint on the possibilities that excludes two more possibilities: not marry at all or marry a respectful man.

                      Of course, If you think your wife is limited to taking on lesbianism or an abusive husband, upon your death, then you obviously don’t respect her, and perhaps she’s already in a marriage with “bullying contempt”.

                      • publiusnj

                        Another possibility is marrying a lesbian who is an abuser. Abuse toward the other member of a lesbian relationship is not at all unknown.

                • Charles

                  This is an abusive post that ought to be removed!

                  • cminca

                    Charles–
                    thanks for the support but I am happy to rebut.

                    • Charles

                      You are mostly on the receiving end of ad hominems, which means you have won the debate.

                      • Tony

                        I ask you to try to imagine what it would be like to be a twelve year old boy, surpassing both of your “mothers” in stature and strength, to look at your friends and their fathers, and to know that you don’t have a father, but that you should have had a father and could easily have had a father. Boys are not apt to talk openly about these things, and learn very early on to hide their feelings so as not to hurt women, particularly their mothers. Get them away from their “mothers” and in a situation in which they can speak freely, and you hear the real story.
                        The only thing that kept my brother in line when he was a teenager was my father. My mother couldn’t have done it alone, and two “mothers” would just have made everything worse. Remember, boys, if they are to become men, must in some measure cut themselves free from the identification with their mothers. Their mothers cannot teach them to be men, because their mothers aren’t men, and don’t even know what it’s like to have a man’s body. The boy must detach his affection from the person to whom he is closest, his mother, to identify himself with the father, so that he can then return and become a husband and father in his own right.
                        To deny a boy a father is cruel and selfish. To deny a child of either sex a parent of either sex is cruel and selfish.

                      • Bono95

                        Exactly, Tony. A woman can teach her son many things, but some things she plain and simply cannot because she is not and never was a bot or a man. The same thing goes for a man and his daughter.

                      • Adam__Baum

                        Indeed. My sister passed away when her daughter was a toddler. Her father is completely unable to assist her now that she is entering a more sensitive phase of life. We are fortunate that there is an active and involved grandmother and godmother to answer the questions that are now coming as she’s fast approaching puberty.
                        Conversely, I love and respect my mother, but there would have been no way I could have had a discussion about nocturnal emissions with her.

                      • Kate

                        Some boys have the kind of relationships with their moms that allow them to discuss nocturnal emissions. However, if that’s an issue, there are usually other guys around to discuss that sort of thing. There are counselors, teachers, doctors, friends, etc. The point is that what is most optimal for a child’s development can be achieved in all sorts of creative ways that honor everyone in the family and meet everyone’s needs. Some boys/girls have fathers/mothers that are very bad for them. They would be better off without those fathers/mothers in their lives. I don’t think I’d do well with a father like Tony, for example. I’d probably have disowned him at the age of five. I can only imagine he would be a drain on my growth and would probably, with his sexist views, be destructive to any girl’s development.

                      • Adam__Baum

                        “Some boys have the kind of relationships with their moms that allow them to discuss nocturnal emissions.”
                        There’s really no way to put this nicely, but I wouldn’t presume to speak for girls experiencing their first period and you should similarly restrain yourself from bloviating on matters you know nothing about.

                      • Kate

                        Sexist, arrogant, and non-responsive.

                      • Bono95

                        Amen, Adam. That is exactly why God designed parents to be 1 male and 1 female. Discussing the “facts of life” is never fun, but it very often tends to be easier to hear about and talk about with the parent who shares your gender.

                      • Kate

                        Children can have male and female mentors. And masculine and feminine mentors. What’s more important is that they DON’T have mentors who attach value to being able to “pound” women. Keep people like that well away from your kids!

                      • Bono95

                        For the last time, Tony did NOT attach value to “pounding” women! He was only making the point that most preteen boys have enough strength to beat their mothers in a fight. He did not say that boys should beat up women or that it has “value”. He meant that example to advocate a boy having a father as well as a mother to teach him to use his strength properly; i.e. to DEFEND women, NEVER to pound them.

                      • Kate

                        In that case, why would it matter one way or the other that a 12yo boy could “pound” his mother?

                  • Bono95

                    What about your reply to Tony’s first post? Or how about Cminca’s post that was removed? You 2 have been far more abusive to Tony than he’s been to you or anyone else here.

                    • Kate

                      No. Tony was the one to resort to insults and to try to bully and bluster his way through every argument. Everyone else has offered reasoned argument. I admit to throwing Tony’s insults back at him, but he can hardly complain when he was the one who introduced them.

                      • Bono95

                        Since when is it insulting, abusive, and bullying to defend traditional marriage and family? That’s all Tony has been doing. He made his points in an aggressive manner not to insult you or anyone else, but to make his points more clear because, forgive my bluntness, you, Charles, and cminca are not listening. You keep accusing him of “abuse” that he is not guilty of, and he admirably keeps replying in a most patient and charitable manner.

                      • Kate

                        No, he called someone “blitheringly stupid” and has made other belittling remarks. The moderators didn’t delete the insults, as far as I know, which is probably because he is one of their own. The insults were not about defending traditional marriage, which would be perfectly acceptable. He WAS being “insulting, abusive, and bullying,” and he resorted to those tactics when he started losing the argument.

                      • Bono95

                        To me, it looks as though Tony was saying that cminca’s ASSERTION was “blatheringly stupid”, NOT that cminca himself was. And really, I have seen far less charitable remarks than that used against people like Tony without such people doing anything to merit them beyond defending traditional marriage and family. Perhaps if the advocates of SSM would be more civil, Tony & Company wouldn’t be making such remarks which are still far and away nicer than what they often get thrown at them.

                      • Kate

                        I don’t know why you’re so keen to defend this person, Bono95. He has called his opponents (not just their arguments) stupid, unread, selfish, cruel, and immature. “Your side did it first” doesn’t cut it as an excuse and is not the case here. Most of Tony’s comments in this thread reduce to muckraking and insults and ignore solid scientific research in favor of debunked myths. This makes them a good microcosm of the SSM debate.

                      • Bono95

                        I am keen to defend Tony because #1 he’s defending true marriage, and #2 he keeps getting attacked unjustly. Maybe he shouldn’t have brought up the “pounding women” example, but he did not mean it to be insulting or advocating abuse. You and several other people here misunderstood him there and have yet to apologize to him or to acknowledge that you read in his words a meaning that is not there (though it is an understandable interpretation). His comments are definitely rather aggressive, but I don’t think they’re really insulting, and perhaps he would speak more calmly if his opponents would do likewise.

                      • Kate

                        Sorry, but Tony was darn rude. Perhaps you think that’s justified because you see his stance as noble or something. You are asking for a different standard of treatment for people who support gay marriage than for those who oppose it, which is suggestive of bigotry and shows a lack of respect for people who disagree with you. If this is how the anti-SSM marriage crowd treats dissent, how are they going to treat practicing gays? Believe it or not, as a straight Catholic, I am interested in examining studies and statistics that indicate how well children do with same sex parents. etc. Tony has been a very negative commenter and role model for his side by personally attacking others who very likely have a better grasp of these studies and the math behind them than he does. He has helped me conclude that gays need protection from people like him. The CCC states “Every sign of unjust discrimination in their [homosexuals] regard should be avoided.” How can gays be safe from discrimination when people like Tony insult even those who defend them and you hold a double standard regarding how people on both sides of the debate should be treated?

                • cminca

                  BTW Tony–I can assure you I have matured well enough to learn how to love a man…..quite well actually.

                  • Alecto

                    Yep, it’s the insipid distain for women that’s the problem.

                • Kate

                  Oh boy, speaking of “blitheringly stupid”! This “Tony” person takes the cake! My dad has MS. Both my brother and I could have “pounded” him by “stinking age twelve”. Neither of us would have considered it. Does it mean we were “deprived of a father” because our father was physically compromised? What a “blitheringly stupid” assumption! And Tony, are you seriously saying you want to deprive foster children of being adopted into loving, stable two parent homes because of YOUR bigotry? Are you truly that “cruel and selfish”? One of my best friends was raised by two lesbians. She’s one of the happiest, most free-spirited people I know. She is straight, but, unlike SOME people, she loves and accepts everyone — straight and gay. That is a sign of maturity and lack of neurosis. Children do not need a physical mother and father. They need parents that embody both masculine and feminine traits as they have been traditionally defined. To assume these traits are allocated by physical sex is as bigoted and ignorant as assuming they’re allocated by skin color. Because my father could barely walk, it was my mother who introduced my siblings and I to athletic activities. My father taught us to cook. They both taught us qualities that transcend masculinity or femininity. I wish all parents were blessed with the maturity my parents have and that my friend’s lesbian parents have. I feel SO sorry for kids growing up with fathers like “Tony”, especially if they’re girls. He obviously hates women.

                  • Tony

                    Again, I am appalled by the cruelty. I am sorry to hear that your father had MS — but that is a tragedy, and we have to live with those. But your brother did have the example of a man — and I do not believe for a moment that your brother would say, “Yes, it would have been just the same if I’d been raised by two women.”
                    As for foster children — we have made it so onerous for normal couples to adopt children or to take care of foster children, that we now have an artificially produced dearth of homes to send them to. That is easily remedied. Your notion that sex doesn’t matter is plainly absurd. Sex is not the same as skin color — it permeates the whole of the person. Your mother introduced your brother to athletics, did she? Well, that is very nice, but her ability to foster your brother’s continued interest and ability in that area would very soon have reached its limit.
                    The point is, it is cruel to deprive a child of a father or a mother. YOU may try to comfort yourself and say that it doesn’t matter, but I assure you it would matter to any boy, not to have a father — and I think the same thing of all of the parent-child relationships. And nobody before yesterday would have thought otherwise. And so far from hating women, I think it is awful for a boy or a girl to grow up without a mother, and to have two ‘”fathers” instead.

                    • Bono95

                      Amen, Tony! Bravo for not being afraid to speak the truth, and quadruple bravo for your charity and compassion! God Bless you and continue to strengthen you!

                    • Kate

                      Simply repeating assertions (“it’s cruel to deprive ..”, etc.) doesn’t do anything to add to their veracity. You say my mother’s ability to foster my brother’s interest and ability would have reached its limit very quickly? That is simply untrue. It was my mother who coached my brother, my sister, and I in several sports. We are all distance runners. None of us, including my brother, has yet matched her best half-marathon time. But that’s not the point. Yes, we’ve all surpassed her in tennis and some other sports. That does not mean she can’t support and promote our sport, find us coaches, offer advice, attend tournaments, etc. You seem to believe that a father needs to be physically superior to his son in order to be a good dad. That is nonsense! My father has been an incredible dad, in spite of his physical limitations. It’s not unusual for a boy to be bigger and stronger than his father by the time he’s 14 or 15. That doesn’t suddenly cut down the father’s worth. Most athletes far surpass their coaches in physical prowess, but that doesn’t mean they don’t need those coaches. Jimmy Connors was initially trained as a tennis player by his mother, as was Ivan Lendl and Andy Murray. You are deliberately and blindly overlooking what women can do for their children. It’s not that you’re pro-men. You’re anti-women. You completely underestimate what women are capable of. My mother taught my brother baseball, and now he’s in line for a college scholarship at a Div1 school. My dad was never involved in his sport except peripherally. And my dad’s illness is not entirely a “tragedy.” It’s a limitation, but it hasn’t stopped him from being a contributing parent. I talked to my brother about the possibility of being raised by two women. He says as long as they had the same characters as our existing parents, he wouldn’t care. There’s more to parenting that the sex of the parents. There’s more to DNA than X and Y chromosomes. There’s intelligence, caring, love, commitment, etc.

                      • Ford Oxaal

                        Whatever. Kids need normal, not abnormal. The state needs to shoot for normal. We need to do what is best for children.

                      • Kate

                        Exactly. And two loving parents is always better than two lousy parents or just one loving parent.

                      • Bono95

                        Ford Oxaal, Tony, Adam, givelifeachance2, me, and everyone else here defending true marriage are not and never were calling for 2 lousy parents. What we want for every child are 2 loving parents of the opposite sexes.

                  • Bono95

                    um, last I looked, masculine traits, as “traditionally defined”, have always been embodied by men, and feminine traits, as “traditionally defined”, have always been embodied women. Whenever a person embodies a trait traditionally assigned to the opposite sex, it is rarely embodied to the extent that it would be in a person of the trait’s “preferred” gender, and it is typically the only such opposite sex trait embodied by that person.

                    • Kate

                      No. Once, sadly, it was considered “feminine” to be submissive and “masculine” to be assertive and/or ambitious. These were culturally assigned “norms”, not true aspects of masculinity or femininity. Women who wanted to conquer the world were often ridiculed and humiliated. Men who were gentle and liked literature or art were considered effeminate (and also ridiculed and humiliated). People are now allowed and encouraged to blossom into what God made them to be, and we should all celebrate that.

                      • Adam__Baum

                        My grandmother was born in 1912, and I never doubted her feminity-but if you lectured her about how things were, even when she was in her 90′s–caricaturing her as some geisha-she’d have asserted herself-in a hurry. Same thing for her mother, born in 1889, who I also knew as anything but submissive. Of course, they weren’t effete liberal snobs, either.

                        You really do have a propensity to talk about things you know nothing about with absolute certainty.

                      • Kate

                        Your only response: “Shut up because you don’t know what you’re talking about.” Suggest you take your own advice.

                      • Adam__Baum

                        Your frustration is showing.

                      • Adam__Baum

                        Women who want to “conquer the world” should be treated exactly as men who want to “conquer the world” should be treated-not as honorably ambitious, but as dangerous sociopaths.

                        You really are just a neat little package of vacant nonsense, aren’t you?

                      • Kate

                        I’m wasting virtual ink on this guy. Aren’t comments that are merely insulting and completely illogical supposed to be deleted?

                      • Adam__Baum

                        You ARE a waste of “ink”. I’ll have no part of your psychosis.
                        Yes, delete Kate’s comments where she accused my Dad of violence.

                  • givelifeachance2

                    That your father was physically weak was not his fault but physical strength is not the source of authority – his authority came to hm viathe fact that he was able to conceive you by the gift of himself to your mother in the marital act. Whence came also your mother’s motherhood.

                    Test-tube-conceived children are unfortunately bereft of the linkage to that beautiful act of self-giving. And for the most part, because of their laboratory conception using “donated” sperm or ova, they also lack their natural mothers or fathers. And orphans, traumatized enough as it is, deserve to have adopted parents who can stand in for the father-mother dyad who originally conceived them.

                    Those who utilize artificial reproduction or unnatural adoption are unfortunately giving away the “keys of the city” of parental rights, which were given by our Creator in order to PROTECT children, to the State. Thanks a lot!

                    I am so grateful to have had a mother and a father and that my conception was the fruit of their love for each other.

                    • Kate

                      A lot of foster kids are not wanted by father-mother couples. Some of them are very fortunate to land up with loving parents who are of the same sex. When you treat their parents as second-class citizens and deny them the benefits straight couples have, you hurt these children.

                  • Adam__Baum

                    Because my father could barely walk, it was my mother who introduced my siblings and I to athletic activities.
                    Really? Good for you, because you are female.
                    Male athletics is far different than female athletics. It’s not only physically demanding, but there’s a whole different level of aggression women don’t understand. I’m well past my prime, but I guarantee you-unless the sport is figure skating-I would destroy you-you would be seriously injured in competing with me. Even before I became a 6 foot 1, 240 pound, benching well over 300 pound bruiser, it was my Dad that taught me how to tackle, because he could take a hit. There’s a difference.

                    • Kate

                      I don’t doubt that you are physically stronger than I am, but I can’t see how that matters. Many athletes are far stronger than their coaches, but that doesn’t mean the coaches aren’t helping them reach their potential. I could probably train you in tennis, for example. My father never played baseball with my brother (who is really good!) or even got particularly involved with his baseball. It was my mom who organized the lessons, found the coaches, and attended the games. As for discipline, it sounds as though your father practiced physical discipline with you, which may be why you “took a step” toward your mother. People who grow up without violence being modeled to them are very unlikely to do something like that. Both you and the Tony person seem to think boys are going to beat up on their mothers if big, strong Dad isn’t around to beat up on them. If a kid has the kind of problems that cause him to veer into domestic violence, there are many interventions available.

                      • Adam__Baum

                        Check your ears, because I specifically described an incident where adolescent angst was diffused with just a sentence.
                        You are so in such a rush to be busy making inferences about things you have no information about, that you can’t bother to read. I can’t say this any other way. You are presumptuous and arrogant ass.

              • AcceptingReality

                The Catholic Church isn’t in the business of defining “secular laws”. It is in the business of recognizing, defining and pointing out truth with regard to matters of faith and morals. She is also responsible to her maker for informing the “secular religion, er I mean society” when the are heading down a dangerous and destructive path.

            • Charles

              The state has extended rights by ruling against the constitutionality of DOMA. Rights have been added — NOT subtracted. This decision makes our country LESS totalitarian as it takes the state out of the business of choosing marriage partners for people.

              • Kate

                Of course. To argue otherwise is like saying that Aryan Germans were victims of discrimination when Jews were allowed to share the same parks!

                • Adam__Baum

                  Oh look, “Katie” is back, now posting as “Kate”, but still providing her signature sophistry.

                  • Kate

                    The mewling of one who has nothing substantive to offer!

                    • Adam__Baum

                      Coming from a font of insubstantiality, that’s rich.

                      • Kate

                        You’re just lobbying insults. You’ve had no answer to the statement that rights were added but not subtracted, meaning there was a net gain in freedoms. I have to assume you have nothing to say.

                      • Adam__Baum

                        I have plenty to say, it’s my refusal to accept your nonsense that perturbs you. Some people merit insults.

              • Adam__Baum

                Yeah, when an unaccountable ennead acting on the personal indignity of one individual (Kennedy) overturns a law duly enacted by two houses of Congress and the President, and dismisses the will of the people of a state by denying them “standing”, that’s just fantastic.

          • Chip Awalt

            Not according to the study by the University of Texas sociologist Mark Regnerus. Dr. Regnerus found that children whose parents had a same-sex romantic
            relationship while the child was growing up suffer deficits compared to
            children raised by their own married biological mother and father.

            When a liberal blogger filed a complaint the University convened a four-person faculty committee (and hired an
            outside expert in “research integrity”) to conduct an “inquiry” into
            whether the charges merited in-depth investigation. The conclusion
            was clear: “Professor Regnerus did not commit scientific misconduct . .
            . None of the allegations . . . put forth by (the liberal blogger) were
            substantiated.”

            • cminca

              Regenerus was completely debunked.

              But since you can’t seem to understand the results–let me lay them out.

              Regenus wasn’t comparing the children of hetrosexual couples with children of same-sex couples. He was comparing them with children with one parent.

              “So Social Science Research assigned sociologist Darren E. Sherkat to examine how the study was handled.

              “It’s bullshit,” he told the Chronicle and should never have been published; that was his assessment after looking at all the paperwork, review process, and trafficking of the study. Among the notable problems: the definition of “lesbian mothers” in which a woman could considered a “lesbian mother” for the purpose os the study if she had “had a relationship with another woman at any point after having a child, regardless of the brevity of that relationship and whether or not the two women raised the child as a couple.

              For a fascinating take on the Sherkat analysis and response from the journal editors and Regenerus, go to The Chronicle of Higher Education.”

              Now try this–

              “Researchers said they found no difference between gay-parent and straight-parent households in the kids’ self-esteem, emotional health, and the amount of time they spent with their parents.

              But children of gay couples scored “significantly better” when it came to general health as well as family cohesion, meaning the families got along better with one another.

              Read more: http://www.nydailynews.com/life-style/health/children-same-sex-parents-healthier-study-article-1.1365963#ixzz2XR02s3tz

              • Augustus

                You may be able to lie to the ignorant public and get away with it, but you won’t get away with it here. The studies you favor that were partially funded by the gay lobby are far weaker than the Regnerus study but they get a pass because their conclusions are the politically correct ones. We know full well how politically slanted to the Left academia is, especially sociology. I’m surprised there are not more so-called scholars who have jumped on your band wagon. It’s clear you have no interest in the truth–given how willfully ignorant you are of the available literature–but for those who do, consider reading this analysis by Walter Schumm: http://www.crisismagazine.com/2012/was-the-regnerus-study-on-gay-parenting-defective

                And for a more detailed analysis of the pro-gay lobby studies, read this peer-reviewed essay by Loren Marks: http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0049089X12000580

                • cminca

                  Unbelievable.
                  Read the editor’s note. Walter Schumm was a paid consultant on the study he was then asked to analyze.
                  I’m not going to waste my time discussing junk science.

                  • Augustus

                    I see. So you are more than just deceitful. You are too intellectually lazy to engage in a debate with scholars who make reasoned arguments in peer reviewed journals: http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0049089X1200169X

                    It’s much easier to engage in ad hominem attacks. For you to simply dismiss opposing arguments rather than engage them intelligently demonstrates your complete and utter incompetence to speak about this issue since it is clear you have nothing of value to say. But we expect that from the gay lobby. Emotion and lies over reason. How typical.

                    • cminca

                      You’ve linked to another article by Walter Schumm. Who was a paid consultant on the study he was “analyzing”.

                      And do you honestly think I’m going to PAY to read this garbage?

                      • Adam__Baum

                        Do you think we’ll bother to read your garbage?Has it occurred to you that you are in the wrong forum?

                      • Augustus

                        I said you were intellectually lazy and what do you do to rebut my charge? You refuse to read a relatively short scholarly article in a peer reviewed journal that analyzes the Regnerus study. Indeed, you are so lazy that you claim the article must be purchased to be read when it would have taken literally seconds to find out that the article is FREE. So, Schumm was a paid consultant. So what. He is more familiar with the study than the critics of the study. You have not established that the conclusions are any less valid than the conclusions of contrary studies. And since the fraud charges against Regnerus have been shown to be baseless, you can’t use guild by association against Schumm, even if guilt by association was a legitimate arguing tactic–which, of course, it is not. You’d better stop now before you completely embarrass yourself.

              • Adam__Baum

                The description “bullshit” is bullshit.

            • jcsmitty

              From what I understand, the UT study was the largest ever conducted on this. Those who say children from same-sex parenting don’t suffer dysfunction in much greater degree don’t have the evidence to back it up.

          • Adam__Baum

            Define “real” research.

            • Alecto

              Er, research with conclusions with which he agrees? That would be the “Ends Justify the Means” school of scientific method! Harrumph!

      • Scott Richert

        “The author’s idea of telling Catholics that they need a church marriage but that a civil marriage or no civil marriage is up to them, is a very interesting one.”

        Let me clear up a misunderstanding: I’m not suggesting a distinction between a Church marriage and a “civil marriage”; I am saying that only the Church can say what marriage is, and that the Church should say that what the state continues to call a “marriage license” has no weight whatsoever in the eyes of the Church. If those who comply with the Church’s conditions for marriage want to pay the fee to get a “marriage license” from the state for tax purposes, survivor benefits, etc., they would be free to do so; but the Church would regard that license as merely a civil matter that has nothing whatsoever to do with marriage.

        • cminca

          Fine, but understand that, in the eyes of the state, the religious “marriage” has no standing.

          No survivor benefits, no nothing.

          And when these fine Catholic men leave their wives, the wife and the children will have no standing in the eyes of the state.

          Good luck selling that.

          (Last night Piers Morgan had a panel on discussing yesterday’s ruling. One of the conservatives is the newly Catholic Newt Gingrich. I loved watching a man that has been married three times–twice to the woman with whom he was having adulterous affairs–talk about the “sanctity” of marriage. And you claim gays are going to destroy marriage!)

          • Charles

            An excellent point. Newt Gingrich is downright creepy!

          • james

            I don’t know these “fine Catholic men” to whom you refer. Certainly not any man who would leave his wife or children. And certainly not Newt Gingrich. Please. As if any devout Catholic would put any stake in what Gingrich or any other philanderer would say about marriage. Please don’t lump “us” together.

            As for the claim that “gays are going to destroy marriage,” I think you’re referring to a different kind of “marriage” than the one which the Catholic Church espouses. I’d recommend the piece by John Jalsevac, http://www.crisismagazine.com/2013/why-we-are-losing-the-gay-marriage-debate-and-how-we-can-start-winning, in an earlier publication on CM. It addresses nicely your claim, and why it is, in fact, a valid point, but also talks about “true marriage,” which is, sadly, quite rare these days.

          • Alecto

            You single out one convert, and make him emblematic of all Catholic men’s marriages?

            • cminca

              Yep–the same way homophobes compare all gays to some guy on a float at a PRIDE parade.

              Just so you know–I’ve never appeared in public in a jock strap and feather boa.

              • Adam__Baum

                Every wear a spiked leather collar or refer to heterosexuals as “breeders”?

                • cminca

                  No actually.
                  I have graduated from an Ivy League school, never been unemployed, always supported myself, given to charity, paid my taxes, and tried to help those in need.
                  All without benefit of sitting in a pew and being told “pay, pray, and obey” by an institution that was aiding and abetting pedophiles.

                  • Tony

                    You can keep your bigotry out of here, too. You do know, right, that pedophiles are all over the place? Less in the Church now than elsewhere? Your gay male friends — where do they go on their exotic vacations? Thailand, maybe? Why do they do that? I’ve heard till I’m sick of it that heterosexual men make up the majority of pedophiles. WAAL, that doesn’t wash with somebody who actually knows mathematics and statistics. Given a heterosexual man, and a homosexual man, the latter is twenty times more likely to molest your son than the former is to molest your daughter — I am not talking about incest, but about people outside of the family, since THAT is the thing that normal people have to watch out for, as they know well that they aren’t molesters! It’s called conditional probability, lady — and the priest scandal itself corroborated it, big time.

                    • Charles

                      See http://psychology.ucdavis.edu/rainbow/html/facts_molestation.html

                      “With 76 footnotes, many of them referring to papers in scientific journals, it appears at first glance to be a thorough and scholarly discussion of the issue. On further examination, however, its central argument – that “the evidence indicates that homosexual men molest boys at rates grossly disproportionate to the rates at which heterosexual men molest girls” – doesn’t hold up.”

                      • Tony

                        Charles — you have to arrive at that position by folding together things that are unlike. It is what the feminists did when they invented the category “domestic violence,” to cover up the fact that live-in boyfriends abuse women far more than husbands do — and thus to cover up the fact that marriage protects women. What needs to be detached here are incest and molestation. (It is increasingly difficult to detach the two, because the statistics-gatherers aren’t making the distinctions anymore; just as in Canada now it is almost impossible to find the divorce rate, because the government has stopped keeping track of them.) Anyway, a little bit of reason here goes a long way. If homosexual men abused boys at the same rate as heterosexual men abuse girls — and we are NOT talking about incest here, which is an entirely different phenomenon — then it would be rare indeed to find a boy who had been molested, since homosexual men make up only 2 percent of the male population. But in point of fact this is not so. It is not rare. It is in fact quite common. One reads about it all the time. Just in Rome now there’s been revealed a boy prostitution ring based in a gay bar outside of the Termini rail station, taking advantage of destitute boys from eastern Europe. Nobody is surprised. Nor is anybody surprised to learn that gay men book vacations to places like Thailand, to pick up boys.
                        In fact, if you know anything at all about the history of homosexual activity among men, or about the etiology of same-sex attraction in men, you will see that the attraction to boys is absolutely predictable.

                      • Mike

                        It is malicious to suggest that gay men are pedophiles, and it shows near total ignorance about sexuality. It’s like stereotyping black men as likely to rape white women or priests as likely to be child molesters. Pedophilia, ebophilia, and homosexuality are different sexual categories. As with all sexual categories there may be overlap, but true pedophiles are exclusively attracted to children and true ebophiles are exclusively attracted to adolescents. In their pure form they are not attracted to other adults of the same sex or opposite sex. There are men who are attracted to both women and children or women and adolescent boys or women, children, and adolescent boys. Some of them molest children or teens and some get into child or teen porn and trafficking rings. It should be obvious that not ALL straight men molest children or teens. Not ALL straight men are inappropriate with adolescent girls. In the same way not ALL gay men molest children or teens. The ebophile scandal at the Termini train station in Rome that you refer to allegedly involves ebophilic clergy members and not homosexual men in open and committed relationships with other men.

                      • Tony

                        Sorry, I know too much about statistics to buy this.
                        What do people do when they want to obscure an inconvenient fact? They blow smoke. They draw irrelevant distinctions, they fold together unlike categories, they blur categories that really are distinct, they choose their endpoints with care, they avoid the point. Now, nobody knows whether the man next door who has engaged in deviant sex with another man is this sort of phile or that sort of phile — and nobody can really know, without a complete psychological and biographical workup. The question that a father or a person in charge of boys must ask is simple. Granted that you know that John has engaged in deviant sex with another man, what is the likelihood that John is a danger to boys? And the answer to that is that he is MANY times more likely to be a danger to boys, than the man who has NEVER had deviant sex with a man is to be a danger to girls.
                        Look, homosexual men make up about 2 percent of the population. But a heck of a lot more than 2 percent of molested children are boys, and a heck of a lot more than 2 percent of child and teenage prostitutes are boys. Do the math.
                        A general statement of probability is not a universal statement. But when we are confronted with a fact, we ought to relate it to other things, and not ignore it. I will wager that every single homosexual man in the United States knows at least one of his fellows who has had sex with a teenage boy. Or don’t you remember, before the Church scandal, that homosexual men were saying that that could be a really good thing for the boy?

                      • Tony

                        I’ve also gone and read the article that Charles mentions above. It is riddled with circular reasoning, excuse-making, and wordplay, all designed to arrive at a predetermined conclusion. You end up saying that “true” homosexual men who are “mature” in their sexuality are not going to molest boys, because — well — because the “true” and “mature” homosexual man is not attracted to boys! Well now, that solves everything, doesn’t it? Define your term in a way that guarantees your conclusion, that is of no practical use whatsoever to anybody, and that in any case prompts the obvious question which the authors do not ask, to wit, “Is there an etiological connection between a man’s being ‘immature’ in his sexuality and his being attracted to males?” Yes, I’d say there is, and that history and biographies and a little bit of reasoning about boys’ lives bears this out.

                      • Mike

                        The “gay men are pedophiles” meme is one of the most malicious claims used to undercut the rights of homosexuals. You think very well of your understanding of statistics, but you are unfamiliar with sampling. The percentage of boys molested is clearly related to many factors, including access and availability of victims. Non-homosexual pedophiles, men who are not attracted to other men, will sometimes have a preference for boys or girls, but sometimes the choice of boy or girl is determined by opportunity. Perhaps this article will clarify some of this for you:
                        http://www.dailykos.com/story/2010/09/18/903178/-Gays-are-pedophiles-No-Here-s-the-proof#
                        The comments here are interesting. Someone mentioned something to the effect that “repression causes the weirdness”, and he may be on to something. Take a look at the DOJ profile of a typical child molester (http://www.co.whatcom.wa.us/sheriff/sexoffenders/pedophile.jsp). This describes your average Joe — a married man who is frequently a respected member of the community. Many of your comments are just off base. How many heterosexual men know at least one of their fellows who has had sex with a teenage girl? That doesn’t make all heterosexual men guilty of cradle robbing by association.
                        When organizations like the American Psychological Association, the American Psychiatric Association, and the American Academy of Pediatrics are opposing the sort of claims you are making, shooting the messenger and dubious claims of stratospheric ability in statistics don’t give you cover. BTW, another site that addresses some of your claims is http://www.splcenter.org/get-informed/intelligence-report/browse-all-issues/2010/winter/10-myths . Consider the caliber of the organizations mentioned therein that disagree with you.

                  • Adam__Baum

                    “I have graduated from an Ivy League school”
                    Ooh. I guess I’m supposed to be impressed, but somehow I find the brandishing collegiate credentials to be a sign of a certain lack of post-educational accomplishment.
                    As for your contempt for the Church, why are you here?
                    Surely you could find somewhere more agreeable to post.

          • Adam__Baum

            Newt is definitely a work in progress. He is not a model of marital fidelity and he was no doubt there to discuss POLITICS not morality.

            • cminca

              No–he was there to discuss the SCOTUS rulings and he began by chastising Piers for “dissing” Cardinal Dolan.
              (By that he meant quoting Dolan directly)

              • Adam__Baum

                Scotus rulings are politics.

          • TomD

            ” I loved watching a man that has been married three times–twice to the woman with whom he was having adulterous affairs–talk about the ‘sanctity’ of marriage.”

            Well, that’s probably why Piers Morgan chose him for his panel, to set up the inevitable Catholic hypocrisy reaction from the Left. That Gingrich continues to be a public voice and figure among Catholics is amazing to me . . . but he is still useful to the Left.

            From a Catholic perspective, personally forgiving someone who is truly contrite for past indiscretions is one thing, continuing to consider them a valid, public voice is quite another.

            • cminca

              “…but he is still useful to the Left.”

              That’s right…. because you never see Newt on Fox news……

              • Adam__Baum

                Newt is a creature of the state, always promoting the use of the state. He may have some “conservative” social views, but he is essential a statist and that makes him leftwing.

          • Gilbert Jacobi

            And there we have it: the Ivy League lawyer chick’s fear and loathing of Mr. Richert’s emminently sensible suggestion is based on not being able to financially eviscerate her victim and live on his earnings after dumping him.

        • publiusnj

          If you are not suggesting that, you should consider doing so. The Church should make it clear that “civil marriage” is something that the State offers but does not require for people to live with one another–or to sire children in–and that the State’s offering of such a “choice” is something that has little worth or durability because the agglomeration of politicians who happen to be in power at any particular time will have no compunction about changing the rules whenever the political winds blow. Indeed, the State has repeatedly done so in the past: e.g., Divorce, DOMA, Gay Marriage, the Marriage Penalty under the Tax Laws, etc.
          The Church might even note, as I have pointed out, that civil marriages come with all sorts of costs as well as some advantages, and that couples getting married in Church under the authority conferred by God should make an informed choice whether they want to contract a civil marriage as well. By pledging their troths to one another before God, they are well and truly married whether they contract a civil marriage or not. “Civil Marriage” is not necessarily in their interest. As I previously noted, couples who can better take advantage of the Earned Income Credit if they remain single under Civil Law, therefore might want to put off contracting a civil marriage until it becomes financially advantageous for them to do so (e.g., when the inheritance laws become more important to them than the IRS’s EIC provision).

    • TheodoreSeeber

      The most necessary thing, I think, is refuse to be the agent of the state anymore. Clearly separate the Sacrament of Marriage from the civil-thing-that-used-to-be-marriage.

      It is sad, but the Supreme Court ruling is clear to me: Catholics are now second class citizens in the United States. And should steadfastly refuse to entangle our religion anymore in the United States, and begin to reject contracts with non-believers.

      • Scott Richert

        “Clearly separate the Sacrament of Marriage from the civil-thing-that-used-to-be-marriage.”

        Exactly. Some of the other commenters have misunderstood what I am saying. I’m not saying that “civil marriage” can be separated from “sacramental marriage”; I’m saying that what Barack Obama calls “civil marriage” is not marriage. Marriage is what the Church says it is.

        Leo XIII was clear on this: “Christ, therefore, having renewed marriage to such and so great excellence, commended and entrusted all the discipline bearing upon these matters to His Church. The Church, always and everywhere, has so used her power with reference to the marriages of Christians that men have seen clearly how it belongs to her as of native right; not being made hers by any human grant, but given divinely to her by the will of her Founder.”

        When the state says that marriage is something other than what the Church says it is, the state is wrong, and “civil marriage” is no longer marriage.

        • cminca

          “When the state says that marriage is something other than what the Church says it is, the state is wrong, and “civil marriage” is no longer marriage.”

          A couple of problems with this–

          1.) The state doesn’t answer to the Catholic Church. Or any church.
          2.) I would have no problem with every couple being required to have a civil union ceremony to have the state recognize the union, and then opt to have a religious ceremony should they want to. This is the practice in multiple European countries. But we have to be clear–the clergy cannot represent the state as the officiant in the secular ceremony. Then the secular benefits of union would be separate from what you consider the sacrament.
          Your problem was that fundamentalist bigots wouldn’t even tolerate civil unions for gays. Look what happened in Argentina with your own Pope.
          So now we have same sex marriage. (And it is not “marriage” it is marriage.) Legal, binding, recognized. It isn’t going away. It is going to continue to expand.
          And you can either watch the attendance shrink in your churches inour plural society or you can figure out a way for the CC to be more tolerant to those who disagree with you on purely civil, secular issues.

          • TheodoreSeeber

            1. All the more reason for us to stop dealing with the state, on anything. Close the hospitals, close the adoption agencies, cancel the contracts, stop even using the State’s money. Render unto God what is God’s.
            2. I see no reason left to recognize purely civil, secular issues, and certainly no reason to support a “plural society” that refuses to recognize my diversity and forces their beliefs upon me at the point of a gun.

            • cminca

              #1–fine with me.

              #2–Yet you seemingly have no problem with a society that refuses to recognize the diversity of others and with the idea that YOUR religious beliefs should be the basis of civil, secular laws.
              Do you see a double standard there?

              • TheodoreSeeber

                It is that authority I have a problem with. I can no longer recognize my government as a legitimate authority in my life. Get your laws off my land.

            • mitchw7959

              Because the cutting-off-one’s-nose-to-spite-one’s-face strategy of retaliation has always worked so well for immature adolescents since time immemorial. But go ahead: withdraw from every facet of secular society, homeschool your children, disconnect your high-speed DSL, and find a nice survivalist bunker for your wife and kids. I’m sure they’ll love the experience.

              • TheodoreSeeber

                Already working on it. But the point is, maybe we should NOT be engaging with such folks. Maybe it is time to circle the wagons.

          • Chip Awalt

            “Civil unions” was and is nothing more than a substitute name for marriage. Instead of trying to redefine marriage, what should occur is that those same sex couples should be given the right to name the one they live with as an heir, with the same legal/financial obligation/benefits of a married couple. (By the way if you are “married” in a state where same sex “marriage’ is legal I think this means you inherit the “spouses” financial debt if he or she should die and you now will be required to go to divorce court should it not work out…one of the ugly underbelly issues not discussed)

            This should fall short of allowing adoption, because no matter how great a father I may be, I can never give my child what a mother can give. In this country, to our egregious detriment we have severely damaged fatherhood, but I am not ready to begin the process of destroying motherhood as well. Our children do have a right to a mother and a father.

            The PURELY civil secular issues are few and far between. Every law has some moral implications, whether you wish to acknowledge it or not. The problem is that the religion of secularism is trying to supplant the Church.

            It is not because of intolerance the Church is dwindling, but rather the lack of courage to speak the Truth and clearly explain the Church’s very reasonable and thoughtful teachings in all of these areas.

            Until we use the secular media (i.e. in the form of commercials) to proclaim the message of the Church, individual such as yourself will never even be exposed to the great loving care with which the Church has gone to address these and other issues

            • cminca

              Wow–so much wrong with this I can’t even begin……

              “It is not because of intolerance the Church is dwindling, but rather the lack of courage to speak the Truth and clearly explain the Church’s very reasonable and thoughtful teachings in all of these areas. ”
              Keep doubling down. It will just make the pews empty quicker.

          • Charles

            Well said, cminca. It is galling to see people complain that THEIR rights are being eradicated when rights are simply being extended to a larger group. What chutzpah! Nobody is forced to agree with the decision of the Supreme Court. Nobody is forbidden to speak their mind on the issue. Nobody is forced to marry anyone of the same sex. It’s just that a fairly small minority of the population has now been extended the same rights that the rest of us have — to marry the person they love. (And, no, Obama is not going to make anyone marry a gay Muslim.)

        • Paul McGuire

          When someone introduces you to their wife do you ask them if they got married in the Church? Most people take a person at their word that they are legally married and don’t check to see if their friends or neighbors satisfied the Church’s requirements for a valid sacramental marriage.

          • Scott Richert

            What is your point, Paul? The reason for doing what I suggest is not so that people will know if this or that couple is married in the eyes of the Church (which, as you point out, they don’t usually know now); the reason for doing it is reasserting the Church’s moral authority over marriage.

            • Paul McGuire

              Well my point was generally people don’t think it relevant whether or not someone was married in the church. So to take it a step further and say marriage in the church is the only marriage that is valid would not strengthen the Church’s position. All but the most devote Catholic would continue to determine whether someone is married by whether or not they had a civil ceremony.

              • Scott Richert

                “All but the most devote [sic] Catholic would continue to determine whether someone is married by whether or not they had a civil ceremony.”

                Once again, Paul, it’s not about how people view other people; it’s about the Church reasserting its moral authority over marriage vis à vis the state.

                • cminca

                  You keep talking about the “Church’s moral authority over marriage”.

                  I’d like to know–are non-Catholics, in your eyes, actually married?

                  Are Protestants? Jews? Wiccans? Hindus?

                  Or are only those married in the CC actually “married”?
                  Are marriage traditions outside of Western religion actual marriages?

                  • Ford Oxaal

                    Sacramental marriage has become more and more marginalized in the West with the onset of Protestantism. The very notion of marriage in the Catholic sense has been pretty much done away with in all 50 states with the no-fault divorce laws. The Catholic view is that the parties to a valid sacramental marriage cannot make a consensual, free-will decision to dissolve the vow. So marriage in the Catholic sense has been nullified in all 50 states, that is, no state supports sacramental marriage. The rebellion against the duties of marriage has wrought an accelerating disaster to the family, and has engendered untold pain and suffering to millions and millions of precious and innocent children who deserve and need to be loved and nurtured by their mother and father, but are instead, by degrees, abandoned.

                    • cminca

                      That’s nice, but it doesn’t answer my question.
                      I asked the author if he acknowledges the legitimacy of any marriage performed outside the CC.
                      Or are only those married in the CC actually “married”.

                      • Ford Oxaal

                        You can easily research what the Catholic Church teaches regarding marriage, to the benefit of all mankind, but suffice it to say that a non-baptized man and woman cannot enter into a sacramental marriage. Then there are many permutations — mixed marriages, marriage between heretics, and so forth. The bottom line is that Catholic sacramental marriage is a huge benefit for the family and should be sought after as the best possible situation for both the couple and their offspring, both now, and for eternity.

                      • cminca

                        OK–

                        So unless a man and woman are baptized, they are not in a sacramental marriage.

                        (And I’ve been told by other Catholics that a non-Catholic baptism isn’t a “real” baptism).

                        So there are millions of “non-real” marriages in America today. All protestants, pagans, atheists, jews…..no one but two baptized Catholics are, according to the CC, sacramentally married.

                        So exactly why has the CC got it’s collective knickers in a bunch over just us gays? When there are all these other “non-real” marriages in far greater numbers than we’ll ever be?

                      • Ford Oxaal

                        Catholics recognize Protestant baptisms, and in fact, baptisms can be performed by non-Christians. For me the whole gay marriage thing is a distraction and besides the point — I mean I agree with you to an extent. The idea of civil gay marriage, in my opinion, is a sort of dance macabre on the grave of civil support of sacramental marriage by those who have been excluded in the past, and who are seeking some sort of inclusion and legitimacy in a party that is over from a civil point of view. Meanwhile, it’s very simple to Catholics: marriage is about families — man + woman = baby — yeah, this really happens. Marriage / monogamy has to have the possibility of reproduction or it makes little sense.

                      • Gilbert Jacobi

                        Since “cminca” has made it clear she does not care what anyone who disagrees with her thinks, and especially not Catholics, most likely she is asking Mr. Richert this question soley for an opportunity to attack him

                  • Vijay

                    While the CC only elevates matrimonial union between 2 baptized Christians (catholic, Protestant or orthodox) to the level of a sacrament, it does recognize any marriage between a man and a woman as a sacred covenant and as the design of the creator. Thus, in my country, the CC always recognized Hindu and Muslim marriages.

      • Charles

        No, TheodoreSeeber. Catholics are not second class citizens in the United States. You are demanding special privileges and preferential rights for straight people and are claiming victimization when you don’t get what you want. This is the very worst kind of entitlement.

        • TheodoreSeeber

          And yet, that’s exactly what the homosexuals have done- demanded special privileges and preferential rights for homosexual people based on some imaginary victimization when they didn’t get what they wanted.

          The difference being, of course, there is a very good biological reason for straight people having those rights and privileges that no amount of language redefinition will EVER fix for homosexuals. The question is, will we be consistent and also remove those rights from straight infertile people who are currently evading taxes?

          • cminca

            What “special privileges and preferential rights”?
            Enumerate them–please.

            • TheodoreSeeber

              Shall we start with your favorite, the right to get married? Denied, of course, to close relatives, to people with more than one spouse, to people with spouses of different species, to people with inanimate spouses, and to people with underage spouses.

              Pretty special rights there (and also one of the reasons I argued *FOR* Civil Unions and a universal right to a civil union regardless of gender, species, number, age, or creation of participants).

              Consent is a worthless measurement because it can’t be measured. So in reality, if we were going to be *actually* consistent in our laws, what gays are asking for is to remove procreation and exclusivity from the definition of marriage.

              If it wasn’t for special privilege, that means we have to open it up to anybody cohabitating.

          • cminca

            “demanded special privileges and preferential rights for homosexual people ”

            Please cite examples.

            Are you talking about the “special privilege” of being able to serve in the military? The “special privilege” of being able to hold a job, adopt a child, rent an apartment, buy flowers or hire a photographer? To be able to visit a sick loved one or to leave our SS benefits to our surviving partner?

            The “special privilege” of being able to avail ourselves of the same rights and privileges other Americans can?

            Two drunk teens can get married in Vegas, and you’re OK with them having all the “special privileges and preferential rights” for as long as they stay married–as long as they are straight.

            But if two people in a long term same-sex relationship want access to the same rights and privileges suddenly that is demanding “special privileges and preferential rights for homosexual people based on some imaginary victimization”.
            Right?

            • TheodoreSeeber

              “Are you talking about the “special privilege” of being able to serve in the military?”

              Yes, currently denied to certain people with mental diseases.

              “The “special privilege” of being able to hold a job”

              Yes, currently denied to people who can’t do the job.

              “adopt a child”

              Currently denied to incestous and polygamous couples as well as pedophiles.

              ” rent an apartment”

              Currently denied to many of the poor, including a whole ton of veterans.

              ” buy flowers”

              Also denied to those without money.

              “hire a photographer”

              Denied to pedophiles.

              “To be able to visit a sick loved one ”

              Denied to immense numbers of close friends

              “leave our SS benefits to our surviving partner”

              Denied, once again, to incestous partners.

              All sorts of people are denied the privileges and rights you are asking for.

              “The “special privilege” of being able to avail ourselves of the same rights and privileges other Americans can?”

              Not all other Americans can. You’ve excluded a lot in your search for gay marriage, which doesn’t actually solve any of these.

              “Two drunk teens can get married in Vegas, and you’re OK with them having all the “special privileges and preferential rights” for as long as they stay married–as long as they are straight.”

              Actually, no, I’m not. I’m against most of what civil marriage currently is, which is why I want it replaced with civil unions for all.

              “But if two people in a long term same-sex relationship want access to the same rights and privileges suddenly that is demanding “special privileges and preferential rights for homosexual people based on some imaginary victimization”. Right?”

              Wrong.

              • cminca

                Of course, all my examples were privileges denied to gays who didn’t have mental illnesses, or any of your other reasons.. Therefore your response is meaningless.
                You’re not being persecuted. You’re not being denied anything.
                Except maybe the right to be a bigot, out loud, without being called on it.

                • TheodoreSeeber

                  “Of course, all my examples were privileges denied to gays who didn’t have mental illnesses, or any of your other reasons.”

                  And thus were discriminatory against the people who had those other reasons, and thus, you’re asking for *SPECIAL PRIVILEGES*.

                  I’m being denied the right to work on making sure *every* child has a mother and a father, and *every* married couple is capable of procreation. Yes, I’m asking for special privileges for the people capable of having children. Yes, I want to deny those privileges to people who can’t provide children with what they need.

                  My excuse for my bigotry is that children grow up best with two normal straight genders- which should be obvious by the way our biology is plumbed.

                  What is your excuse for wanting special rights denied to other people with mental disorders? And don’t try to tell me that homosexuality is not a mental disorder, I’ve seen George Weinberg and Kenneth Smith’s bank accounts.

                  • cminca

                    “Yes, I’m asking for special privileges for the people capable of having children. Yes, I want to deny those privileges to people who can’t provide children with what they need.

                    My excuse for my bigotry is that children grow up best with two normal straight genders- which should be obvious by the way our biology is plumbed.”

                    First–thanks for admitting you’re a bigot. And that the CC’s position on SSM is bigoted.

                    Second–you’re not asking for special privileges for JUST the people capable of having children and denying those privileges to “people who can’t provide children with what they need.”

                    You are asking for special privileges for ALL people of the opposite sex who get married. Whether they are capable of having children or not. The CC is not denying marriage to older or infertile couples. They are not petitioning the government to keep drug addicts from being able to be married. They aren’t petitioning the government to deny marriage to pedophiles.

                    They save that special bigotry for gays, and gays alone.

                    “I’m being denied the right to work on making sure *every* child has a mother and a father, and *every* married couple is capable of procreation.”‘ Who is stopping you? Who is preventing you from becoming your own version of WBC? Who is stopping you from putting on a sandwich board and walking up and down outside your local mall?

                    You can’t away with it without being called a bigot. But no one is actually stopping you.

                    There is plenty of research that says two parents, of any gender, can raise healthy, well adjusted children. I’m not going to cite it–you’d refuse to believe it anyway.

                    “Plumbing” has nothing to do with being able to parent. Most of my gay friends with kids have adopted special needs children who were given up by the “plumbing” that created them because they were either unwilling, or incapable, or parenting themselves–let alone a baby.

                    As far as I am concerned, if you are deemed mentally developed enough to understand and enter into a contract (and meet all other criteria–ie. age) there is no reason why you shouldn’t be married.

                    Homosexuality is not a mental disorder. We don’t know what causes it but it is a inherent trait–just like handedness. (We don’t know what causes that, either).

                    As for George Weinberg and Kenneth Smith–I have no idea who they are and what they mean to this discussion, but I would think that they wouldn’t like to know that someone as apparently unstable as you has access to their bank records.

    • jacobhalo

      This decision by the SC has opened up a Pandora’s Box. Now, Those who want to have more than one wife or one husband will clamor for their rights. What about Pedophiles. Who to say that they can’t have sex with consenting children? This country is going the way of the Roman Empire. Every government has fallen throughout history. This country will be no different.

      • cminca

        The laws governing multiple spouses didn’t change.

        The laws regarding the age, and ability, to consent to sex (or to entering into a contract) haven’t changed.

        “Every government has fallen throughout history. This country will be no different.” You are absolutely right. But the social Darwinism of the republican party’s economic policies mixed with their disregard of climate science are going to kill us a lot faster than any perceived “moral decay”. Yet fundamentalists of all stripes keep voting them in.

        • jacobhalo

          The earth’s temp. has not changed in 15 yrs. Our abortion president should be focused on the economy with its latest anemic growth rate of 1.8%. I Know the laws of multiple spouses hasn’t changed. I said that those who want them changed will clamor for it. Laws are made and can be changed. It used to be a crime to be gay.

          • cminca

            Deny science all you want. I’m not going to engage with someone who won’t face the facts.
            Look at the history of the US economy since the Theodore Roosevelt administration.

            Every depression and recession was caused by Republican economic policies.

            Democrats came in and had to clean up the mess.

            • TheodoreSeeber

              Then why have they failed this time?

              • cminca

                The mess was the largest since the stock market crash of 1929. Although the economy was recovering by the end of the thirties (except for 1937 when FDR was convinced to worry about debt over growth) the start of the war was really the end of the depression.
                Obama has been at it 5 years. The stock market is at 14000. Housing is coming back. Yes it is slow. But it is happening. And it would be happening a lot faster with a democratic congress.

                • TheodoreSeeber

                  It would be happening a lot faster if we’d admit that capitalism is just a farce and the housing and stock market is based on the shrinking to the lowest participation in employment since the 1860s. A labor utilization rate of 48% is not a “recovering economy”, it is a full blown depression. Housing and the stock market only affects the rich, this entire so-called recovery has been nothing more than bread and circuses hiding a massive upward wealth transfer dictated by the Banker’s Coup.

                  Yet another reason for the Church to stop being involved in the United States- at all.

            • jacobhalo

              One fact is that the earth’s temp. has not changed in 15 yrs. That is a fact. Secondly, there are over 35,000 American scientists who have disputed what you call “facts”.

              • cminca

                Lots of people believed in WMD too. Didn’t make them real–did it?
                Earth’s temp has gone up.

                • Kate

                  Yes, climate change is real. The deniers are beginning to look either very stupid or very dishonest.

              • Kate

                jacobhalo, you’ve been brainwashed by the disinformation machine. “Earth’s temp. has not changed in 15 years” is demonstrably false. 2005 and 2010 are the hottest years on record. See http://www.skepticalscience.com/global-warming-stopped-in-1998.htm for a clear rebuttal. The “35,000 American scientists” propaganda is bogus. It is simply a survey that anyone can sign. Someone awarded his dog a PhD and signed for his dog. See http://www.skepticalscience.com/global-warming-scientific-consensus.htm . The Catholic Church has been very outspoken about climate change. “As faithful Catholics, we have a moral obligation to care for both Creation and the poor. Pope Benedict XVI insists, ‘Before it is too late, it is necessary to make courageous decisions’ to curb climate change.” (See http://catholicclimatecovenant.org/). The Vatican Pontifical Academy of Science has issued its own report on climate change, which comports with the IPCC on the science and adds its own take on the morality of the issue. For further information, see http://catholicclimatecovenant.org/tag/pontifical-academy-of-sciences/ .

            • Alecto

              1. Every war of the past 100+ years, started by DEMOCRATS.
              2. Congress was majority Democrat in 2008, and in 2001, and with the exception of the 90s, when Bill Clinton (I’m gagging) took credit for congressional policies that led to prosperity.
              3. Reagan? That Congress was majority Democrat, so were the Congresses under Bush 41.

              4. I don’t know what you mean by “Republican economic policies” because in a $17-$18 trillion dollar economy, the Fed controls monetary policy, and the Congress controls fiscal policy.

            • jacobhalo

              Right, and every major war was started under a democrat. WWI-Wilson, WWII, Roosevelt, Korean, Truman, Vietnam Kennedy, Johnson. We can recoup money loses. We can’t bring back the dead.

    • Gail Finke

      That’s a serious proposal? The Church should marry people without regard to whether they get married legally? It’s completely unworkable and, frankly, if the Catholic Church said a couple was married but the state didn’t, no one would care. And the Church can’t disregard civil marriage — the Church assumes and must assume that all marriages are sacramental marriages.

      What we need to do is strengthen and champion marriage. We have done a woeful job of this and although a USCCB campaign to strengthen marriage is going on right now, it’s just as half-hearted as the Fortnight for Freedom campaign. It does Catholics NO GOOD AT ALL for the bishops to declare things and not insist that people actually do them. My parish has done nothing about the Fortnight or the Marriage, Family and Religious Freedom initiatives, and it’s not because we are understaffed and can barely do anything beyond the Sacraments. I live in a big Archdiocese and very few parishes are doing anything about either. We need to shape up, get on the same page, and stick to essential matters threatening our very existence, but I don’t see the bishops realizing this, and I sure don’t see parish priests realizing it.

      • Scott Richert

        “The Church should marry people without regard to whether they get married legally?”

        The Church defines marriage, not the state. Here’s Leo XIII: “Christ, therefore, having renewed marriage to such and so great excellence, commended and entrusted all the discipline bearing upon these matters to His Church.”

        “All the discipline”: A couple who is married in the eyes of the Church is married, period, whether the state considers them to be married or not.

        “the Church assumes and must assume that all marriages are sacramental marriages”

        The Church does not assume that. Marriages contracted between baptized Christians are presumed to be sacramental, though marriages contracted between Catholics must also comply entirely with canon law regarding marriage before they are presumed sacramental.

    • hombre111

      Good article. The Church needs to return to a discussion of its religious ideals, and make that discussion beautiful, ethically compelling, and logical. Hmm. Should have done the same thing with Roe Vs. Wade. By trying to get justices who would overturn that unfortunate ruling, all we have is five conservative justices whose main goal is to enhance corporate power. Note how, even with states attacking Roe as never before, they managed to duck the issue for yet another year? Any bets about next year?

    • Robert

      Mr. Richert’s policy would probably result in a plunge of sacramental marriages. Most self-styled Catholics value the civil benefits of marriage more than the sacramental symbolism, and faced with the need to suddenly get married twice, most would skip the pretty building and just marry once. In the long term this might further marginalize Catholicism from the mainstream; in the short term Church finances would take a hit.

      • Alecto

        I’ve got news for you. Finances are going to take an even bigger hit because the Catholic Church’s federal contracts will require recognition of same sex marriages. Can’t weasel their way out of confronting that issue.

      • Scott Richert

        “Most self-styled Catholics value the civil benefits of marriage more than the sacramental symbolism . . .”

        Marriage is what the Church says it is. Read Leo XIII’s Arcanum, which I’ve linked in a comment above. It isn’t “sacramental symbolism”; the sacrament and the contract are inextricably linked.

        Those who want the civil benefits that accrue from getting a “marriage license” from the state could continue to do so. All I’m suggesting is that the Church should say that such a license has nothing to do with marriage, as defined by the Church (sacrament and contract).

        “faced with the need to suddenly get married twice . . . ”

        Why would you have to “get married twice,” any more than you do today? Get the license from the state, if you wish, and the priest, best man, and maid of honor can still act as witnesses. All that the Church would say is that the license is not necessary; complying with the Church’s regulations regarding marriage is all that is necessary.

        • Robert

          That is, of course, the true nature of Church sacraments. But for the majority of “Catholics” who only step in a Church for – you guessed it: marriage – its the trappings of “tradition” that attract them. For those people the complication of having to going through two separate processes for both a Church and civil license will be too odious, so they may well just skip the Church (or go to another).
          In effect your policy might alienate a large proportion of the supposed “faithful,” and the question then is what will be the repercussions of this. Certainly it would strengthen the faith and theological legitimacy of the remainder, but it would also strongly change how the Church figures in the larger community.

          • TheodoreSeeber

            As of yesterday, the Supreme Court says the Church doesn’t figure in the larger community, at all, we’re no longer citizens.

          • tamsin

            Our new parish was built with input from wedding planners to determine if it would be an attractive place for staging the visually-recorded memories of a couple’s wedding day. The wedding event being eternal. The sacramental union? maybe, maybe not.

          • Scott Richert

            “the complication of having to going through two separate processes for both a Church and civil license”

            Today, the Church in the United States requires you to get a marriage license before you have a Church wedding. Does that qualify as “two separate processes”? If not, then, from that standpoint, nothing will change except for the fact that the Church will no longer require you to have that license.

      • TheodoreSeeber

        Let finances take a hit. In fact, let’s have a church of the poor for the poor (as Pope Francis has requested).

        • cminca

          One thing that will NEVER happen–the CC letting the finances take a hit!

    • Alecto

      Where do we go from here? We go down. However, does anyone see how this opens the door to marriage fraud on a grand scale? If I can marry anyone for the purpose of receiving federal benefits and preferential tax treatment, get ready for the onslaught of fraudulent civil “marriages” solely for the purpose of those benefits. It makes a mockery of marriage.

      The Supreme Court has gradually diminished its moral authority by expanding its legal jurisdiction, a point Scalia noted in his brilliant dissent. Whenever the Court overreaches, as it has done in myriad decisions, it creates excuses for the people of We the People to disregard every ruling it makes. It undermines all authority, even the Court’s rightful authority.

      At this point, I think the best advice is get down on our knees and pray. Pray for God’s blessing, and ask God’s forgiveness because we have brought this on ourselves by treating this institution like a disposable handi-wipe.

      • Paul McGuire

        If The Supreme Court lost any authority, it was when it declared The Voting Rights Act as unconstitutional based on an imagined idea of federalism that the Court has rejected for decades. Scalia complains that the majority in the DOMA case made up law to come to their conclusion but the same thing can be said for the majority in the Voting Rights Act case. Scalia and other conservative justices just know how to make their making up laws sound like dedication to the Constitution.

        • Alecto

          The Court did not declare the VRA unconstitutional, it returned Section 4 for “updates” after 50 years of integration and progress to be made. Nothing like grand, sweeping generalizations to invalidate everything you write.

          Look, no offense, I’m sure you’re a nice guy, but Scalia is the brains, he’s the mojo, smokes the rest of them put together. You are even in the same lane intellectually, and for that matter, few are. Your complaint is not based on the merits of his dissent, it is based on your political preferences. That is not judicial reasoning. Too bad, there’s much to admire in Scalia whether you agree or not. I’ve been around enough legal bullies to understand very few have the brains to lay out cogent arguments. Most lawyers are ideologues who want to bully the rest of society into conforming to their vision of it. Scalia is a rare bird. He actually makes the case for his ideas.

          • Paul McGuire

            I very much do respect Scalia. He does a good job of trying to explain the majority decision in DOMA better than Kennedy himself can do. I think there are logical problems with both the DOMA decision and the VRA case. My point was that it is disingenuous to suggest that the DOMA decision is activist while the VRA is not, or vice versa. I think both are results of the justices approaching the decision from their desired result and doing their best to justify how they get there. I don’t think either one of them is particularly persuasive from a legal standpoint.

            Scalia makes up a new consideration of federalism to look more closely at the VRA largely based on his reading of dicta in a prior case. Simply saying “We would look more closely at this if given a chance” does not mean that the court is required to do so when that chance arises. Similarly, Kennedy doesn’t clearly explain whether he is deciding DOMA is unconstitutional under rational basis, so-called rational basis with bite, or substantive due process. I think the general principal is there though, that distinctions without a valid basis should be struck down.

            I tend to disagree with the result in the two cases involving employment discrimination that Scalia authored as well but at least he does a good job of supporting his decision with the text of the statues in question. I can tell as well that he is not so much driven by reaching the particular result but un-moved by the ramifications of the practical consequences.

            • Alecto

              Since FDR the Court has been pretty a joke. It has little merit, most of the time gets decisions wrong or gets them right for the wrong reasons. But why should the judiciary be any different from the other 2 branches?

    • Greg

      I wholeheartedly agree. Very well stated. Now, the problem is – how do you get the bishops to agree that this is the best course of action?

    • dch2

      Unworkable. There are 1,300 Federal benefits and legal rights tied to civil marriage. That was core issue in the DOMA case. Its not practical to construct a civil legal contract that captures all the complexities of simply getting married. Its why your side lost this case in the first place; DOMA was stupid pandering bill that would never withstand a serious challenge. The GOP has been playing this as a wedge issue all along, now the wedge has flipped and they will abandon the issue (Hint: people under 30 don’t care about it).

      • Alecto

        I love that argument about the young being trotted out as though people remain unmarried and 25 forever! LOL, one day they will get married and start families. I guarantee it will matter very much to them then.

        • Paul McGuire

          They may not remain young and unmarried forever but they do realize that their marriage is not at all threatened by same-sex couples getting married. Despite all the progress for same-sex couples, that hasn’t stopped all my straight friends from simultaneously celebrating that progress and entering into their own straight marriages and having children.

          • Alecto

            Give it time. With tectonic societal shifts, the damage is not often visible for decades.

    • Charles Lewis

      This is a very good idea but those who choose to go that route will be facing many difficult issues: everything from the transfer of government benefits to whatever savings there are filing as a married couple. The worst, though, will be on the adoption front. No agency that is licensed by the state will allow couples without a state marriage certificate to adopt. I don’t present these as reasons not to follow the columnist’s advice but to recognize the difficult road ahead. Good column

    • cestusdei

      We could also fence the table more clearly. Politicians who violate Church teachings should be denied Communion.

      • mitchw7959

        “It would force “cultural Catholics,” like Justice Kennedy, to decide where their loyalty lies” from Mr. Richert and “Politicians who violate Church teachings should be denied Communion.”

        Therein lies the quandary for Catholics who wish to deny civil marriage protections to gay and lesbian couples and their families. If you all haven’t noticed, many of marriage equality’s strongest advocates have been cultural Catholics: most recently Washington State’s Gov. Christine Gregoire, Maryland’s Gov. Martin O’Malley, New York’s Gov. Andrew Cuomo and the Gov. Quinn and AG Lisa Madigan in Illinois. They’ve made the calculations, weighed the options, and appropriately realized that their personal faith is not the basis to deny the gay and lesbian taxpayers and citizens of their state equal protection under the law.

        Your threats of denying Communion or excommunicating visible Catholic proponents are practically toothless. But if such exercises in dogmatic control and hierarchical authority turn you on, by all means, go for it.

    • Carl

      I’m not a big fan of either Carl Rove or President Bush but to lay the ax at their feet is ridiculous. If Congress can take away the “limits of the jurisdiction” it can give it right back just as easy as when we had a one party federal system from 2008-2010. What should have happened was a Constitutional Amendment process, but I don’t think the votes where there, as evident by I believe thirty states who already have Amendments—U.S. Constitution requires 33 states (2/3). Republicans should have tried, but what if they lost? Give the left a victory? I agree the two cases yesterday where a forgone conclusion.

      Current administration ignores DOMA and The Mexico City policy altogether for example, they would have undone Bush’s “limits of jurisdiction” just the same.

      • thebigdog

        Yes Carl, as soon as I saw the “Carl Rove” line, I knew we were dealing with a Mark Shea type, with obvious (though veiled) motives.

    • Chip Awalt

      Excellent Article

    • Mary Ann

      Well, the President has way more than proved that he is not a man of “his word”, so we can expect that he will flip on the “civil marriage only” idea once he senses the Catholic revolt and finds a way to back track and yet again “redefine” (read: lie about) his own words. However, I have thought the very same thing as you propose here about removing Catholic marriages from the civil license requirement and maintaining them as Sacramental and outside of Caesar’s rule. But will that protect them from Caesar’s clutches ultimately? Caesar has no respect for such boundaries, I suspect.

      • Scott Richert

        Strike while the iron’s hot, Greg. President Obama has given the Church the opening, and the bishops should tell him what he can do with his “civil marriage,” which is no marriage at all.

        • Greg Cook

          And there’s the problem: the bishops are not leading. If they would start standing up to ostensibly Catholic politicians who are part of the problem I’d start listening.

          • slainte

            As long as Bishops are dependant on public financing for social justice initiatives, their voices will remain mute. Bishops must find alternative private sources of capital to finance these initiatives.

            When a business partner fundamentally changes the terms of a partnership in a manner that impedes one’s ethical and moral standing, one must be prepared to dissolve the partnership.

      • Michael Paterson-Seymour

        In France, it is a crime to perform a religious marriage ceremony for a couple not legally married to each other [Code Pénal Art 433-21] This has been the law since 9 November 1791 It is listed among “attacks on the civil status of persons” [Des atteintes à l'état civil des personnes]

        This legislation has been copied in many European countries

    • Carl

      Where do we go from here? Join the Tea Party Movement and demand a smaller Federal Government—Catholic Subsidiarity!

      Both Social Security and Obamacare were rejected by the Supreme Court as being unconstitutional and it was only through the unlimited ability to tax and spend granted through the sixteenth amendment that the Federal Government is slowly confiscating the rights and powers that rightfully belong to the people and the states!

      They say Healthcare represents at least 15% of the economy, well ad to that the Federal Pension and Benefit programs, all College funding—the U.S. federal budget is at least 70% social spending!

      It’s these very same benefits that the left suing to gain “equal rights” and the new “civil rights!”

      The Fortnight of Freedom should be about abolishing Obamacare and not just abortion and contraception! It’s insane to believe that you can give the ultimate power to control to the feds and to then argue at the same time to make one or two exceptions!

      Catholics are as dumb as republicans playing Charlie Brown constantly falling for Lucy and her promise to hold the football so Charlie can kick it. To only pull the football away yet again!

      http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=055wFyO6gag

      • Carl

        Isn’t it apropos that Lucy states, “Isn’t it peculiar
        Charlie Brown how some traditions just slowly fade away?!”

    • BM

      It is an interesting suggestion. But the Church has always recognized non-Catholic marriages, because fundamentally they were real, natural marriages, only lacking the extra sacramental aspect. Now, with the legislation of unnatural marriage, this is no longer the case. However, I think they will continue to treat natural civil marriages as marriages and only disregard the obvious fakes.

      However, you are completely right in the earlier part of your article. I read the bishops’ typically foppish response and had the same reaction. They have no power against this political machine. It is clear that they don’t know how to respond to its attacks. Moreover, their responses offer little but milquetoast words. (If we would only speak in soft, dulcimer tones, they’ll see the error of their ways…..)

      The gauntlet has been thrown down time after time. It is clear to all those with eyes to see that the wider culture and especially those in political power despise the very notion and foundation of the natural law (and thus all of Catholic morality as well), which is the very basis upon which the life of individuals, families and states can truly grow. They have repeatedly and successfully enshrined this seminal falsehood and injustice into laws and forced it into the cultural mores, hidden under the mask of ‘equality’ and other fig leaf terms, thus propagating it far and wide through all levels of society.

      For the love of God, please respond with some force and substance. There is a great spiritual battle in us and all around us, start acting like it.

      • TheodoreSeeber

        We need to disregard the whole set. Civil marriages are now not valid.

        • BM

          It is a matter of meaning and intention, which makes it a tough call. At what point do we not call what men and women are doing at their ceremonies “marriages”? Has the civil definition been so perverted and then imbibed that, when a man and woman get a civil marriage, we cannot believe that they have in mind and intention what we call a natural marriage? That case can be made, but it would be difficult if not impossible. For the Church already sets the bar pretty low on what counts for a marriage. Almost all are presumed valid unless shown otherwise.

          • TheodoreSeeber

            ” Has the civil definition been so perverted and then imbibed that, when a man and woman get a civil marriage, we cannot believe that they have in mind and intention what we call a natural marriage? ”

            Yes. And the Church needs to raise the bar.

    • Kevin Vaughan

      Taking a political individual’s word? The bishops have generally been the weak link in supporting the Catholic (Truth) view as they attempt to convert the elite. I am disapointed in their response but not discouraged. When will they have the courage to make a stand?
      Thank you for helping me understand what I can do every day to be a good Catholic.

    • claudia

      Scott, I’ve been wondering why the Catholic church hasn’t excommunicated Nancy Pelosi and others who claim to be Catholic, but have completely different values from the church ,and even say they think the church agrees with them. What’s up with that??

    • consumingflame

      There are lots of actions the Pope and his bishops can take. The ball is in their court.

    • Alphonsus

      I haven’t finished working my way through what I think the best response to all of this nonsense of same sex marriage is, so these are preliminary thoughts. The basic thrust is this: use the same tactics as the enemy to accomplish the goal of inculcating truth again into our society and culture.

      Begin with insisting “no”, we are not going to accept marriage licenses for ourselves that read “Spouse 1 and Spouse 2″ instead of bride and groom or husband and wife. No, we aren’t going to accept birth certficiates for our children that read “Parent A and Parent B” instead of mother and father. No, we are not going to accept the educational paradigm where same sex marrige gets equal time treatment with the vastly numerically superior opposite sex marriage. No, we are not going to accept ourselves being referred to – by government or anyone else – as having a gender instead of a sex. Etc.

      You get the idea.

      Over decades, a very tiny minority of people have used the school curricula to bend the minds of children to their way of thinking in order to produce a subpopulation, now adult, that cannot see through their fictions. They also have used the government to propagate and enforce their fictions in countless subtle and overt ways. These people are not playing a game. They are deadly serious about reconfiguring cultural morals and mores to conform to their distortions of the nature of man through the use of governmental power and educational influence.

      One important way to counter and reverse this trend is to be as deadly serious about the truth through the use of government and education as well. Visiblity, volume, and unflaggingly consistent determination to succeed. That is the beginning of the answer, in my early analysis.

      • Carl

        This will never happen through a central power in Washington, DC. Theoretically it could as long as a benevolent King is in office, but history is replete with tyrannical kings.
        What you envision is a traditional family, local and state superiority—Subsidiarity.

        We created a Leviathan Monster in D.C. and we are left begging for some semblance of liberty.

        • Alphonsus

          You’re right, Carl. It has to start from the bottom up, local to national. Good thought.

        • Alphonsus

          And also, all of the millions of new legal immigrants we are about to have are just the audience and fellow activists for this. They believe in the value of marriage and the family.

        • Scott Richert

          And the only way to destroy the Leviathan is not to try to take it over but to ignore it.

          As M. Stanton Evans is fond of saying of the “Reagan Revolution,” the problem is that conservatives came to Washington, D.C., in 1980 to drain the swamp, but within a few years, they decided that it was a hot tub.

          • Alphonsus

            Scott, with respect, Leviathan can only be ignored in its claim to truth. It cannot be ignored in the reality of its power and influence.
            Yet, Leviathan is not really a singular entity motivated by a singular self-will. It is a population of people who govern by individual self wills formed into a conglomerate of power and perhaps corruption. The government (state) is non-existent as a singular being. It is a hive of people who have been granted the power to govern. The input determines the output here.

          • Carl

            And that hot tub is filled with laity, priests, and Bishops too! Hot tubs don’t belong in Washington.!

    • filologos101

      The Church will continue to fall, and her shepherds will choose whether to defend her or to drop their bead of incense in the flame. The souls of us, their charges, will weigh in the balance in their time of judgment, at which time may God, though they tempt him not to, have mercy on their souls.

    • Daniel

      I really fail to understand this idea that the Church will impact the culture by, effectively, withdrawing from the culture. And if the Church “leads” in this withdrawal, then a huge “silent majority” will just follow along? Reeaally? Someone needs to explain to me how that has worked out in Education, Film, Television, News Media, and every other culture-creating institution that exists.

      In less than 10 years the culture has shifted to one that embraces same-sex so-called marriage. Why? Because they’ve heard how glorious it is that anyone two people who “love” each other can wed. They heard this in school, in the news, in films, in television. Meanwhile those who know marriage is a bedrock institution of the family and society have withdrawn into smaller and smaller enclaves, doing nothing but casting stones and hurling invective at those same sources.

      Politicians are followers, not leaders, and they have followed the culture into this cul-de-sac. In less than 10 years it went from political suicide to endorse same-sex so-called marriage to the position that, in many states, it is almost political suicide to NOT endorse it.

      The solution, however, is not to withdraw from the cul-de-sac, effectively turning our backs on those who suffer. Mr. Richter is correct that this is a conflict within the culture and any political activity is a mere rear-guard action. But withdrawing is surrender. It abandons people to the Father of Lies, and I just don’t find that as Christian.

      Instead we should redouble efforts in the culture. Get involved in the media, the entertainment industry, educational institutions. The Left did exactly that, and the results of their effectiveness are clear in the cultural rubble around us. Of course, those who choose to do this will suffer. It will be hard. They will be declared bigots or worse. But Christ, when He sent His disciples into the world, didn’t say it would be easy and that they wouldn’t suffer. He entered the world knowing full well He came to suffer on our behalf. How can we do any less?

      • Scott Richert

        Greg, I’m not suggesting withdrawing from the culture—not at all. I’ve specifically said that we need to change the battleground from the political arena TO the culture. Confining the culture to the political arena is PRECISELY the problem.

    • Pingback: Attack on Marriage: Thursday Special - BigPulpit.com

    • Glenn H.

      Indeed. The church has always made a distinction between civil marriage and
      sacramental marriage. In much of Latin America, clergy are not
      considered witnesses of the state where marriage is concerned so anyone
      getting married there must appear before a judge to have their civil
      marriage completed even before a sacramental church wedding – two
      separate ceremonies. In the US, state law typically grants clergy
      permission to witness civil marriage on behalf of the state so we have
      come to think of the church wedding as being one ceremony when it is
      effectively two simultaneously. Some parishes even formalize the signing
      of the marriage license on the altar at the end of the mass, further
      blending the two together. This is unfortunate because they are separate
      and distinct and church law recognizes this fact. There is no threat to
      Catholic sacramental marriage as in Christian churches that do
      not recognize sacramental marriage as distinct from civil marriage.
      This is no doubt a holdover from the reformation but it seems deeply
      rooted in their belief system. Not so for Catholics. US bishops are
      wasting a tremendous teaching opportunity here – about the nature of
      sacramental marriage. And an opportunity to appear magnanimous to the
      civil rights of individuals – because their interests and the interests
      of Catholics do not conflict. Catholic sacramental marriage is not threatened
      by civil marriage of any kind.

    • Adsphe

      I have asserted that same sex marriage does not have an objective purpose for humanity. And knowing the singular logic of material self, it cannot make sense of my claim.

      First, Love is a pure principle in the primary layer, and not a pure principle in the secondary layer. Pure principles can only be quantified into objective purposes. Love
      based on liberal sentiments of modern secular culture is subjective in the
      secondary layer and not pure.

      Therefore, the majority of subjective sentiments cannot outweigh the status of the pure principle. In order for love in the secondary layer to transcend is to undergo a
      purification process.

      On the one hand, objective purpose derived from pure principles is a value contributed to the stable social organisation of society. Families which are based on objective values form social groups in giving rise to communities and societies. It is the valid outcome of
      pure principles that impact upon a type of organisation, and in this case Society. Society exists to ensure the maintenance of the common good.

      And on the other hand, subjective sentiments cannot be a consequence of pure principle. It is the result of a liberal process of tribal sentiments of modern material culture in the second layer. While subjective sentiments cannot transcend their singular
      entities into being, they have in fact formed linear groups in the fulfilment of their subjective and ambitious desires. Their organisation is an aggregate of entities coming together to satisfy individual’s desires.

      You see, objective of being serves the common good, and subjective of the abstract entity serves the individual.

      Both organisations reflect a type of economy in place. The objective is Socialism proper a solid and value base, the subjective is Pure Capitalism an abstract depends on external forces.

      And finally, the linear or singular tribal sentiment material is only a portion of humanity and in the absence of mind and spirit is caught in a deteriorated state of limbo.
      Seriously, what comes after same sex union?

      Thus the quality of life cannot be relied upon the linear material development. It is the
      fulfilment of holistic needs of the mind, body, and soul that achieves happiness,
      and solid progress of human civilisation.

    • James Stagg

      The key to how the Church accepts the challenge will be in the military. maybe the Church will need to remove all Catholic Chaplains, when DOD (under Obummer’s pressure) insists all chaplains perform gay marriages. Just like the upcoming “mandate” to fund contraception and abortion should cause the Church to remove “Catholic” from all hospitals and colleges……if the Bishops have the guts to do so. Then let’s see where the gays go to die from AIDS.

    • http://anziulewicz.livejournal.com PolishBear

      Except that for Straight (i.e. heterosexual) couples, absolutely nothing is changing. Nothing is being “redefined.” That law-abiding, taxpaying Gay couples seek to participate in the institution of marriage was never an effort to make homosexuality compulsory for everyone. Most people have been and always will be Straight, and they will continue to date, get engaged, marry, and build lives and families together as they always have. None of that is going to change when Gay couples do the same.

      Furthermore, churches will never be “forced” to provide ceremonies for Gay couples, any more then they have ever been “forced” to marry Muslim or Atheist or Jewish couples. That’s just the epitome of paranoia and fear-mongering. Fact is, NONE of the legal benefits of marriage come from the church, they come from GOVERNMENT, and government has never needed the church’s approval to issue a couple a marriage license.

      Honestly, the amount of vitriol I see coming from Christians who think of themselves as “compassionate” is absolutely astonishing.

      • Alphonsus

        I think your definition of compassion is quite thin. A feeling, really, the product of an untutored conscience and undeveloped adult mind. For there is no compassion in agreeing with a man in his error, nor in accepting his flawed analysis of reality in order to – at his insistence -make him feel better about himself and his choices. Authentic compassion consists in accepting a man where he is in his error and encouraging him towards the truth. This is the example of Jesus Chirst, not the hate-deserving straw man you have set up as the “Christian”.

        • Alecto

          That is a sawbuck response to a two-bit slander. Beautifully written, and totally wasted.

        • cminca

          Read the post. Nobody is asking for you to make them feel better.
          Polishbear has pointed out, correctly, that SSM does nothing to straights getting married.
          That all we want is to have access to the same civil rights as all other law abiding, tax paying Americans.
          He wasn’t asking for compassion. He was remarking, again correctly, that the posters on this site may call themselves Christians yet they lack the very compassion for other that Christ was known for. That they are, in fact, not acting like Christ.

          I can assure you that your approval means nothing to us. Just stop trying to deny us civil rights.

          You can take your approval–and the sense that you have any right to approve or disapprove–and……well you get the idea.

          • Carl

            As the SCOTUS Ruled, marriage is NOT a right—it’s a privilege,
            The only thing given away here, albeit erroneously, was spousal SS and pension benifits. Power of attorney would have solved taxes on inheritance and all other so-called “benifits.”

            • cminca

              Terribly sorry–as I’ve already cited above–Warren stated, in Loving vs. Virginia–that marriage is a right. And what Kennedy said was that marriage was not a right spelled out in the constitution–which is true. The constitution doesn’t speak of marriage.

              “The only thing given away here, albeit erroneously, was spousal SS and pension benifits. Power of attorney would have solved taxes on inheritance and all other so-called “benifits.”

              It has been estimated that it costs $300K+ in attorney’s fees to cover the rights and benefits conferred by a marriage license. Can we remove your right to those privileges and are you willing to pay that bill?

              • Carl

                Please reference this $300K+ cost.Then substract the typical costs of raising children by heterosexuals. I don’t believe attorney fees come any where close to child rearing costs.
                Homosexuals being superior in morals, kindness, and parental skills is one talking point I haven’t seen you type yet—do share!

          • Alphonsus

            Where there is no right, there can be no civil right.
            Children often confuse their freedom to desire with the right to have what they desire. That’s what is going on here with the ssm crowd…except that the ssm crowd has determined to forcibly infuse the culture – by the power of the government and the influence of public education of the young – with the their childish idea that what they want they have a right to. They want to remake the culture into their own giant play pen.
            But, as everynew parent learns, the household cannot function if it is ruled by the kids. The hammer drops at some point, for the good of all. The kid idea that the lamp he breaks in his room has no effect on the the lamp in the parents’ room – and so is none of the parents business- doesn’t wash out when the parents have to write the check for the replacment cost.

      • TheodoreSeeber

        “That law-abiding, taxpaying Gay couples seek to participate in the institution of marriage was never an effort to make homosexuality compulsory for everyone. ”

        Keep repeating the lie long enough, maybe somebody will believe you, but I for one never will.

      • Carl

        What vitriol? Standing up for Constitutional and Catholic values is now vitriol?
        It’s now compulsory for heterosexuals through their federal taxes to pay for the llfestyle choices of homosexuals. I guess it’s fear mongering too that Obama is forcing Catholic institutions to provide for abortion and contraception services! Canada has criminalized “anti-homosexual” speach, so how can a family there or Church continue fo live their lives in peace?
        Sure Obama said recently he wouldn’t force any Church to accept homosexuals. First, so he does believe his government can force people? Second, Catholics were forced to serve homosexuals in adoption services, Third, just eighteen months ago he was against SSM and no he’s it’s greatest proponent.
        And government does require the approval of the Church! It requires the approval of everyone! Legally the Church is only different from any other corporation in that it is non-profit. SCOTUS just acknowledged recently the personhood of corporations, Appearantly you don’t like that ruling of government do you? And besides, Catholics make up the Church and what they believe, you want to exclude them?
        So, do you believe all benifits should come from government? Where is this enshrined in Catholic Doctrine yet alone our U.S. Constitution?
        I see the source of your idealology and its not Catholic or from our founding fathers of North America.

        • cminca

          Let’s break it down—shall we?

          “It’s now compulsory for heterosexuals through their federal taxes to pay for the llfestyle choices of homosexuals.”

          First of all–I’ve been paying for yours for years. Second, being gay isn’t a choice. Being Catholic is. Before you want to legalize discrimination against a group for what you claim is a choice you better be prepared for the ramifications.

          “I guess it’s fear mongering too that Obama is forcing Catholic institutions to provide for abortion and contraception services!”

          Money paid to an insurance company or fund is not identified to be used for any particular source. Are Quakers allowed to NOT pay taxes because their taxes go to pay for the military when they are pacifists?

          Am I permitted a tax break because I object to my tax dollars subsidizing tax free religious institutions that use their pulpits to try and deny me civil rights?

          Of course not.

          And the CC didn’t have a problem paying for contraception until it got into a fight with Obama. Then suddenly it was an issue.

          http://jezebel.com/shh-ny-catholic-church-quietly-paying-for-birth-contro-510091145

          “Second, Catholics were forced to serve homosexuals in adoption services.” The adoption agencies you are referring to took taxpayer dollars. The agency had a choice. Serve all the taxpayers, or self fund. Some of them served all the tax payers, some decided to go out of business. It was their decision.

          Catholics do, of course, have every right to make their voices heard in the public square. They have the same voice as anyone else. They do not get to write laws based on their beliefs simply because that is what they believe.

          And before you trot out “the people of CA voted” I’ll warn you that if you think the populace should be voting on other’s civil rights NEXT TIME WE MAY BE VOTING ON YOURS.

          I believe the government is the protector of rights. All rights. Even those of the minority.

          You want the CC to define the laws? Move to a theocracy. This country is not now, nor never was one.

          • carl

            I see only broken logic:
            * False, actually a homosexual couple has the finacial advantage. A homosexual couple has no procreative/child rearing costs, two incomes, and both we recieve full SS/welfare Benefits. No rights lost!
            * False, Quakers argued not to participate in war and agreed to support in other means—plus finacial support through income taxes didn’t happen till 1917. The Tax Amendment is the cause of all this government tyrany and the IRS should be abolished.
            *False, you have no understanding of non-profits/charitable institutions—the most cost effective means of support to the poor. Most Hospitals, secular, are non-profit as well!
            * False, the state of MA controls all adoptive services and does not allow private institutions to violate state law.
            * False, Catholics believe in Natural Law and not therocracies.
            True, this country is becoming a secular theocracy from butchering unborn babies, soda pop, to death panels.

      • carl

        Government’s legitmate involvement into marriage is in two basic areas:
        1.) Property rights
        2.) Procreation and the continuation of society in its best form (so it’s governmet that benefits from marriage and not the other way around)
        Church’s involvement:
        CCC 1603 God Himself is the author of Marriage (Legal Benefits)
        CCC 1625-27 Marriage covenant (Law) is between a man and women—not government
        CCC1631 Mariage is a Sacrement
        Anything else is the creation of man and in rebellion of God.

        • cminca

          Carl–

          In the plural, secular USA no one church, or religion at all, is the basis for marriage.

          Don’t believe me?

          The Pope himself cannot legally marry anyone in this country unless they have a state issued marriage license. The state is supreme to the church.

          The Pope himself can annul your legal marriage–but you are still married in the eyes of the state. The state is supreme to the church.

          You can be married by an atheist who is an official officiant licensed by the state. The state doesn’t care as long if you believe in God, as long as the person is licensed.

          So this country is in rebellion to God. Maybe you best leave.

          • Carl

            First, I’m not a Catholic troll posting on a secular website. You’re clearly a non-Catholic troll posting your secular opinions on a Catholic website. And your legal opinions are dubious at best!
            There’s nothing stopping the Catholic Church from performing the Sacrement of Marriage. And you can shop around for a church that satisfies tastes too. And all I would have to do is meet my states co-habitation status and I would be effectively married under most state laws. In Fact, if I play my cards right I would open a whole slew of Federal and state Benifits for my common law wife and children that I wouldn’t have otherwise! Isn’t governement welfare great! Or should I sue because of these discrepancies?

    • TomD

      Along the lines of what the author states, we must begin to make the critical distinction between legal, civil marriage and sacramental marriage. Legal marriage is a non-binding “contract” that, for the most part, defines what must be legally complied with when the contract fails. It has little or no binding quality regarding the legal marriage itself.

      What the same-sex marriage debate has provided is clarity with regards to the primacy of sacramental marriage. Legal marriage may be a civil requirement, but it is of little or no true, lasting value. Let us now acknowledge and strengthen sacramental marriage . . . and begin to put behind us any serious consideration of the institution of legal, civil marriage. It may be required from a purely legal standpoint, but that is its only value.

      Let us hope and pray that they do not come after sacramental marriage next. There will inevitably be lawsuits, first with regards to the use of Church facilities, later with regard to marriage within the Church herself. What the Courts will do here, is what is REALLY important. Let us begin to prepare now.

      • cminca

        Tom–all we want is equal rights UNDER THE LAW. All we want is access to civil marriage and sacramental marriage for those who want it from churches who agree with it.

        Regarding church facilities–if they are rented to the general public regardless of faith than they should be available to gays and lesbians. If you don’t want to make them available to us, then they shouldn’t be rented out to others.

        • William Meyer

          Utter nonsense. For any church to be forced to make itself available for use by people who a) are not members of the church and b) whose lives are squarely opposed to the tenets of the faith of that church is to require that church to participate in its own desecration.

          The Catholic Church welcomes people with SSA; it also recognizes that sexual activities between two people of the same sex is gravely disordered and sinful. This has been true for many centuries, and no polity has the right to assert otherwise, much less to force the church, whether Catholic or not.

        • TomD

          All Christians must recognize the clear distinction between civil marriage and sacramental marriage. Civil marriage is merely a non-binding, legal “contract,” now primarily created to define legal obligations upon dissolution. Civil marriage in the West has been an institution in decline for much of the twentieth century, a decline that, given modern culture, probably cannot be reversed. The latest controversy only accentuates that trend and this controversy should provide us some insight regarding the clear distinction between civil and sacramental marriage, and the primacy of the later.

          From a Christian perspective, it is sacramental marriage that must be strengthened, as it has become subject to many of the secularizing trends and attitudes that have weakened civil marriage. It is with sacramental marriage that Christians now need to focus their time and effort.

          Now is the time to prepare for the inevitable lawsuits with regards to sacramental marriage. We must not make the mistake in assuming that religious liberty will be determinative to modern Courts.

    • Pingback: Where Do We Go From Here? - Christian Forums

    • ltroide

      So Kennedy is a self-proclaimed catholic? Add him to the list of so-called Catholics who don’t understand or practice their religion. Move over, nancy pelosi, joe Biden and the rest.

    • Tony

      I have come round on this and find myself agreeing with Mr. Richert. The marriage license has been so sullied by the State, the Church should simply wash her hands of THAT, entirely. It is also perversely true that a young married couple would be far better off financially if they did NOT get the state license, because then they would qualify for all kinds of state benefits — and frankly I do not see the moral reason why people who do the right thing and who do need those benefits should not receive them, while we reward shackups and worse. Let the State go hang.

      • givelifeachance2

        You are speaking from the point of view of the young married couple (who is Catholic, presumedly) and not from the point of view of the child who is conceived by an agnostic, atheist (or worse) couple. That child would be better off with their (natural) parents bound somehow, at least by a commitment before the state.

    • Maggie Sullivan

      Scott your making one big mistake in this article. You seem to think that the Bishops in America actually have courage.

      From Dolan paying for abortions through Archcare in his diocese to Kennedy, Pelosi, and all the other Catholic politicians who run the show we clearly see our bishops will not even stand up to Catholics who have built the culture of death their is not one chance in a billion they will stand up the federal Gov. After all that could endanger all the cash they get for social jutice programs.

    • Joe

      I’m so glad and thankful I had a Mom and a Dad and not two Dads or two Moms. How incredibly sad that must be.

    • Craig

      This is why Freedom of religion talks failed: the official Church talks must be about SIN AND IMMORAL ACTS, ie, sodomy; contraception. As I said before, the religious freedom fight would fail because it is about sin. God and the Holy Family protect us!

    • Anthony

      Scott,
      Well said. My wife and I have always considered our sacramental marriage to be distinct from the signed piece of paper called a “Marriage Certificate” that the priest insisted that we sign before he officiated at our wedding. We only keep the latter for tax benefit purposes. It would be nice if priests were told that they could officiate at sacramental weddings without anyone getting the piece of paper from the state.
      Anthony

    • Uuncle Max

      Just think about this if you will;

      Lesbian woman wants to have a child but obviously not the natural way. So she goes to a fertility clinic, picks out a donor, does whatever she needs to do at the right time of month and gets pregnant. 9 months later she has a child, either by herself or with her wife or partner or whatever.

      But the child can’t even ask until he/she reaches the age of 18 – “who’s my daddy?”

      That’s not right.

    • Pogovio

      Scott, I believe you have a solution as near perfect as possible. It is so remarkably simple and directly to the point – religion handles sacramental marriage and government handles civil marriage, and neither encroaches into the other’s domain. Leave govt free to regulate civil marriage however it determines is best for the nation and its citizens; and religion free to regulate sacramental marriage according to its doctrines and traditions.

      If all religions adopted and preached this position, the whole conflict about marriage would simply vanish. It would allow govt to apply to civil marriage the Constitution’s principles of due process and equal protection for all individuals, and full faith and credit between the states. A type of civil marriage would be prohibited only when the govt could show that it would cause harm to other individuals, to society, or to the process of governing. Thus same-sex civil marriage would not be prohibited.

      Those who understand marriage as a holy sacrament would not be required to obtain a civil marriage, but would be free to do so if they choose to invoke the more than 1000 federal and state benefits tied to civil marriage.

    • Judge_Bartley

      Justice Kennedy Pimps the Culture of Death

      For many years, Justice Kennedy, a putative Catholic appointed by
      President Reagan when the Senate sunk Justice Bork’s nomination, has
      been pimping for the Culture of Death whether it be “gay marriage” or
      infanticide. From my four volume treatise, The Kiss of Judice: The Constitution Betrayed, here are some excerpts from his opinions starting with his opinion legalizing sodomy.

      §17.89 Lawrence v. Texas: Sodomy legalized

      Oxford Companion:[1] [T]he Court in Lawrence v. Texas (2003)[2] overturned its previous holding in Bowers v. Hardwick (1986)[3]
      . . . declaring unconstitutional a state ‘anti‐sodomy’ law that sought
      to regulate private sexual behavior by consenting adults.

      Coroner: In Lawrence, Kennedy for the majority decriminalized sodomy writing:

      Liberty protects the person from unwarranted government intrusions
      into a dwelling or other private places. In our tradition the State is
      not omnipresent in the home. And there are other spheres of our lives
      and existence, outside the home, where the State should not be a
      dominant presence. Freedom extends beyond spatial bounds. Liberty presumes an autonomy of self that includes freedom of thought, belief, expression,
      and certain intimate conduct. The instant case involves liberty of the
      person both in its spatial and more transcendent dimensions.

      Coroner: That’s quite a paean to anal and oral sex. For
      Justice Scalia, dissenting, the passage reminded him of the “mystery
      passage” in Planned Parenthood v. Casey[4] where the court per Kennedy, Souter, and O’Conner reaffirmed the barbarous Roe. v. Wade.

      Mr. J. Scalia: And if the Court in is referring not to the holding of [Planned Parenthood v.] Casey, but to the dictum of its famed sweet-mystery-of-life passage,
      (“At the heart of liberty is the right to define one’s own concept of
      existence, of meaning, of the universe, and of the mystery of human
      life”): That “casts some doubt” upon either the totality of our
      jurisprudence or else (presumably the right answer) nothing at all. I
      have never heard of a law that attempted to restrict one’s “right to
      define” certain concepts; and if the passage calls into question the
      government’s power to regulate actions based on one’s self-defined “concept of existence, etc.,” it is the passage that ate the rule of law.

      Coroner: The “mystery of life” passage sounds a lot like what travelers used to hear in airports from Hare Krishnas. But more from Mr. J. Scalia’s rhetorical arsenal:

      Mr. J. Scalia: [Lawrence] dismantles
      the structure of constitutional law that has permitted a distinction to
      be made between heterosexual and homosexual unions, insofar as formal
      recognition in marriage is concerned. If moral disapprobation of
      homosexual conduct is “no legitimate state interest” for purposes of
      proscribing that conduct, and if, as the Court coos (casting aside all
      pretense of neutrality), “[w]hen sexuality finds overt expression in
      intimate conduct with another person, the conduct can be but one element
      in a personal bond that is more enduring,” . . . ; what
      justification could there possibly be for denying the benefits of
      marriage to homosexual couples exercising “[t]he liberty protected by
      the Constitution” . . . Surely not the encouragement of
      procreation, since the sterile and the elderly are allowed to marry.
      This case “does not involve” the issue of homosexual marriage only if
      one entertains the belief that principle and logic have nothing to do
      with the decisions of this Court. Many will hope that, as the Court comfortingly assures us, this is so.[5]

      Coroner: That hope was just this week dashed when Kennedy, repudiating his word in Lawrence, delivered the coup-de-grace. For the Scalia dissenting opinion, please see Gay Marriage: A Feigned Case and a Monumental Dissent on the Merits by Scalia and Thomas, JJ.

      With all his talk on the “mystery of life” blah, blah, Kennedy has
      only promoted the anti-life propositions of abortion, which takes life,
      and homosexual “marriage” which can never produce life, but, as Prof.
      Charles Rice put it, only “excrement”.

      [1] http://www.answers.com/topic/federalism

      [2] http://www.answers.com/topic/lawrence-v-texas http://laws.findlaw.com/us/000/02-102.html

      [3] http://www.answers.com/topic/bowers-v-hardwick

      [4] http://www.answers.com/topic/planned-parenthood-of-southeastern-pennsylvania-v-casey;

      See http://laws.findlaw.com/us/505/833.html

      [5] http://www.answers.com/topic/federalism