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BLOG: My Views on the Marriage Amendment

The law should be the law and religion should be religion, so lets continue to keep the two separated on this matter!

‎With elections just around the corner and two Constitutional amendments on the ballot, it is time for me to voice my opinion on the marriage amendment.

My catholic upbringing teaches me that marriage is solely between a man and a woman, and as far as religion and church I agree, as it applies to religion and the church. However, a constitutional amendment is basically a legal thing and viewing the issue from a more legal perspective my view is different.

In legal terms, basically, a marriage is a contract with respect to living arrangements between two people. Therefore in the land of the free, where government is expected to be separated from religion. Where we promote the right of every individual to practice their own personal religious beliefs, I must in good conscience, set aside, as best I can, my religious values from my decision and base my decision on what is best for a free society to continue to be free.

Therefore, I believe, that on a legal basis any two people should be able to enter into a marriage contract. As far as moral or religious values, each church has the right and place to determine how marriage is best defined for them and their followers, and this definition will very from religion to religion, in some cases from church to church. THIS IS FREEDOM, FREEDOM OF CHOICE. While personally we may not agree, we must allow others the freedom of choice.

The law should be the law and religion should be religion, so lets continue to keep the two separated on this matter!

MY VIEW, SIMPLY STATED: VOTE FOR FREEDOM, VOTE FOR CHOICE, VOTE NO ON THE MARRIAGE AMENDMENT.

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Keith, it sounds like you essentially agree with Paul Tuschy on this issue. From PaulTuschy.com: "I have been married to my wife Marie for almost 10 years and I believe that marriage is a sacred institution. However, I do not believe that government should have any purview over a subject as sacred as marriage. The state should not be in the business of defining a private contract, which is what a marriage is. Contracts should be left to the individuals that sign that contract to determine terms and conditions. The government's role should simply be to enforce those conditions. I would be in favor of abolishing government marriage licenses because I don't believe that one should need paid permission from the state to marry."
Keith Joyce November 05, 2012 at 04:12 PM
While I personally do not support Mr. Tuschy, it is true that on this issue we agree as I believe it is very likely that Mr. Atkins does as well.
I would agree with you on that from a theoretical standpoint, but as far as I've been able to see, Mr. Atkins has not taken a stance on the marriage issue other than that he voted "nay" to putting it on the ballot.
Keith Joyce November 05, 2012 at 04:42 PM
As far a abolishing government marriage licenses, the license is basically the contract and it costs money to file any contract with the government. As being married gives a couple certain tax rights/relief it is, in my opinion appropriate to charge a fair fee for service. A couple can choose to marry solely in a church without a license and not pay the government a fee, as many same sex couples choose to do now.
Keith, that is the core of the issue which many people are disregarding. The government giving benefits to certain couples and not others is a very obvious discriminatory act. That is not acceptable. "Marriage" should be a ceremony between individuals and their church. Not a government-sanctioned event. If we remove the benefits of "marriage" from the books and replace it with a private contract, this will not be an issue.
Keith Joyce November 05, 2012 at 05:01 PM
That Mr. Atkins voted against placing the amendment on the ballot could suggest many things. The key thing here is that the vote was as a legislator and not an endorsement of a personal opinion. Additionally the vote was whether or not to place to the voters the question to modify this states constitution. Had I been in Mr. Atkins seat at the time of the vote, I would have voted in the affirmative, not because I agree with the amendment, but that I believe in the democratic process and the peoples right to vote on the issue. So being I am personally against the passage of this amendment, my belief in the democratic process would have trumped my personal feelings against the amendment. I respect and support Mr. Atkins choice to not publicly support or oppose the question, but to allow the concerned parties to advocate for their position and allow the democratic process to work.
Keith Joyce November 05, 2012 at 05:19 PM
A big part of the disagreement on the issue, in my opinion is that more that one definition of marriage is being used. One, there is the religious definition, which varies from religion to religion, but in many cases can be boiled down to a UNION between a man and a woman. Then there is the definition as a matter of law. As a matter of law, marriage is a civil contract, a contract of CIVIL UNION between two people. To limit the ability for individuals to enter into any contract based upon sex is wrong and generally, unconstitutional and illegal. However, in the case of Marriage as a matter of law, this point seems to have been missed. If I were a legislator I would be working toward striking the word Marriage from law, when referring to Marriage as a contract and replace it with CIVIL UNION, defining civil union as a contract of union between two persons. This would leave the definition of Marriage to religious institutions, and the matter of law with legislators. To resolve this issue the two must be separated! However, lawmakers seem to miss this simple concept time and time again....
Daisy Chene November 05, 2012 at 05:34 PM
I am pretty sure that Mr. Atkins believes the State should be the sole authority for deciding who can marry. He supported the Defense of Marriage Act, which limits marriage to one man and one woman, did he not?
Keith Joyce November 05, 2012 at 06:18 PM
Nick and Daisy, I may be reading the post's wrong, but it seems you two have contradicted each other on how Mr. Atkins has voted. As to the best of my knowledge, Mr. Atkins has neither publicly supported or opposed the amendment I, personally am not going to assume what his position may or may not be.
Peter November 05, 2012 at 11:27 PM
Keith, well said! Vote NO twice.

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