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Insight Editions Announces Three Trek Books For 2015
By: T'Bonz on Jul 24

To Be Takei Review by Spencer Blohm
By: T'Bonz on Jul 24

Mulgrew: Playing Red
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Old October 1 2008, 07:44 PM   #61
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Re: Takei And Altman Wed

T'Booze wrote: View Post
TheOSRemastered wrote: View Post
And there was much rejoicing.
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Old October 1 2008, 07:56 PM   #62
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Re: Takei And Altman Wed

Count Floyd wrote: View Post
It's already happened in Massachusetts. They legalized gay marriage, so then it became illegal for all adoption agencies, including church-run services, to favor heterosexual married couples over homosexual "married" couples when it comes to placing foster children in homes.
Yeah, that's a tough one.

I'm all for gays being treated equally, but forcing church-run adoption services to include homosexuals in their placements is touchy, because it goes specifically against (some churches') beliefs, which could result in a disincentive for churches to assist in adoptions.

Personally, I think the church has it wrong. (And I am a member of the church.)

Jesus was a chill dude who hung with criminals and prostitutes and said we should all love our brothers. I can hardly believe that he would have it out for the gays. But that's just my two cents.

Then again, I don't believe Jesus would have a problem with abortion either -- or at least he never addressed it, so its a guess on the part of the church. (Despite how sure the church seems to be on this and other issues that God/Jesus never weighed in on.)
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Old October 1 2008, 08:50 PM   #63
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Re: Takei And Altman Wed

Samuel T. Cogley wrote: View Post
It all comes down to the Star-Bellied Sneetches, really. That Doctor Seuss was a genius.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Sne..._Other_Stories
Possibly my lifelong, all-time favorite book.
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Old October 1 2008, 10:00 PM   #64
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Re: Takei And Altman Wed

Steve Roby wrote: View Post
davidant32 wrote: View Post
the Dagman wrote: View Post
These two men getting married HURTS NO ONE.
It hurts a lot of people by stepping on their conservative value system and how they believe a country founded on Christian morals and ideals should not, to be blunt, legalize sin.
What, like adultery? Not illegal. Taking the Lord's name in vain? Not illegal. What's the big deal about something that didn't even make it into the Ten Commandments?
TerriO wrote: View Post
davidant32 wrote: View Post
the Dagman wrote: View Post
These two men getting married HURTS NO ONE.
It hurts a lot of people by stepping on their conservative value system and how they believe a country founded on Christian morals and ideals should not, to be blunt, legalize sin.
If people are going to hold up one particular passage of Leviticus as literal, why not hold up the whole thing? Which means incest and adultery are right up there with homosexuality. Cheat on your spouse? You're just as much an abomination as a homosexual couple. You can't steal from your neighbor (the old "borrowed yard clippers and never gave them back" scenario?). Tats? Forget it. A linen/wool mixture jacket? No can do.

I'd give these folks a lot more credence if they actually lived by the entire book, instead of cherry-picking the passages that suit their particular corner of the belief system.
I would argue that just as societies and cultures evolve, so do their morals and value systems. People no longer sacrifice animals, do they? In older times, certain aspects of the 10 Commandments may have been more important, such as honoring parents and not being jealous. But these Commandments were difficult for a society to enforce, as they were often "private" or "fleeting" matters. Other Commandments, such as murder and theft, were more "public" and had lasting ramifications. So while true Christians do not try to control anybody's private life, they still think it is necessary that certain aspects of public life not be condoned. This is where a lot of Christians' "hot button" issues come into play, as they see abortion (murder) and gay marraige as morally wrong, and thus mustn't be condoned publicly. Christians cannot do anything about a same-sex couple living together, nor anything about their sexual activities, but when it comes to issues like marraige and adoption, these have lasting ramifications. To have a piece of legislature thrown in their religion's face is to ignore what many have voiced as quite important to their current, evolved belief system.

TerriO wrote: View Post
davidant32 wrote: View Post
the Dagman wrote: View Post
These two men getting married HURTS NO ONE.
It hurts a lot of people by stepping on their conservative value system and how they believe a country founded on Christian morals and ideals should not, to be blunt, legalize sin.
I beg to differ. How is not being allowed to walk all over the civil rights of a minority group hurting someone's belief system? It's not telling anyone what they can or can't believe. As a matter of fact, I'd argue that it actually would reinforce their Christian morals, by holding up the "do unto others as you would have them do unto you" principle.
True Christians are probably the most tolerant people you can find these days, IMO. That is what it means to be Christian. But there is a difference between "tolerance" and "acceptance." Many Christians today will tolerate just about any other view out there, but when it comes to accepting it legally, that's where they get their beef and they have a right to be heard.

TerriO wrote: View Post
davidant32 wrote: View Post
Now before anyone mentions No State Religion, let me say this: that phrase was intended so that the government, or monarchy, would not be officially alligned with the Catholic (or any other) Church, preventing the oppression of other religions. It was not meant to say that religion must be ignored altogether when deciding laws.
Okay, if we're going to take religion into account when deciding laws, we need to also take into account Judaism, Islam, Paganism, Scientology, Shinto, Zoroastrians, and I'm sure I'm forgetting a few here. Oh, and let's not forget the Agnostics and the Atheists. Should they be ignored when deciding laws?
There is a key difference here though, and that is recognizing both the dominant religion in the nation as well as the religion on which the nation was arguably founded. All the other religions are protected, but they should only be considered when deciding laws if a large enough body wishes they be considered. What if I were to make up my own religion and be the only one to practice it? I surely could not expect national laws to reflect my own beliefs. But when a vast majority of Christians want their views to be considered, they should be. Would you be in favor of telling an Islamic nation that they need to start legalizing a certain action, even if the Islamic religion does not condone it nor does the majority of the people?

KevinK wrote: View Post
davidant32 wrote: View Post
the Dagman wrote: View Post
These two men getting married HURTS NO ONE.
It hurts a lot of people by stepping on their conservative value system and how they believe a country founded on Christian morals and ideals should not, to be blunt, legalize sin.
In 1987 the pastor of Grace Baptist Church (http://www.gracenc.org/) not only refused to let me enroll our daughter in their "Christian" school, he counseled me to consider whether or not I was actually married in the eyes of God. If I take your position as you seem to have stated it, the fact that my wife and I stepped on the conservative value system of these people and were engaged in the sin of race mixing means that I must repent, disown my children and abandon my wife. Because, if I understand you correctly, the lack of regard I showed for their conservative beliefs is of far greater importance than any oath I swore before God or my commitment to my partner in life.
I will not pretend to be as emotionally attached to this issue as you are, as you have personal experience, and by this I mean no disrespect. I do feel that you are equating the view I presented to a racist view, and this is certainly not the case here. True Christians are not racist; how could they be? From the Book of Genesis, all people are descended from Adam and Eve, so how could interracial relations be forbidden? And they aren't, according to the Bible, so any Christian that does not approve based on religious beliefs is not a true Christian. The Bible does, however, make specific reference to same-sex relations, and that is where the difference lies. I would also like to point out that, as I thought I had made clear, the views I'm presenting are not necessarily my own, rather I am just echoing the concerns of many US citizens. And judging from the number of responses I have received in opposition to my last post, I would say that this view is underrepresented in this forum.

KevinK wrote: View Post
davidant32 wrote: View Post
KevinK wrote: View Post
All people must have equal rights under the law -- that equality is the fundamental principle on which our country was founded, it is the source from which all of our laws must flow.
We must also remember that our country, again, was founded under a Christian mindset by Christian forefathers.
The founding fathers were deists, not Christians. Read their writings. They believed God created the universe and ordained an order to the world (with white men in charge) then sat back to see what we would do with it.
While it is true that there has been debate and speculation over the founding fathers' religious views (most of which seem to be led by those with an agenda to erase all remaining Christian influences from the public sector) when one "reads between the lines," I tend to base my opinion on their beliefs directly from their own words. Below are a few quotes from Presidents Washington and Jefferson, obtained from initial Google search results:

“It is impossible to rightly govern a nation without God and the Bible.”

“The propitious smiles of Heaven can never be expected on a nation that disregards the eternal rules of order and right which Heaven itself has ordained”

"It is the duty of all Nations to acknowledge the providence of Almighty God, to obey his will, to be grateful for his benefits, and humbly to implore his protection and favors."

~President Washington

“Of all the systems of morality, ancient or modern which have come under my observation, none appears to me so pure as that of Jesus.”

"I am a real Christian, that is to say, a disciple of the doctrines of Jesus."

~President Jefferson

TerriO wrote: View Post
davidant32 wrote: View Post
After all, that is why we live in a democracy. I'm as tolerant as the next person, but I just think that multiple sides of this issue need to be viewed, and not just the bashing of the gay-bashers.
I'm not bashing the gay-bashers. I'm trying to get them to think about what they're doing and how easily it could be turned on them.
Good.
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Old October 2 2008, 01:48 AM   #65
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Re: Takei And Altman Wed

davidant32 wrote: View Post
I would argue that just as societies and cultures evolve, so do their morals and value systems.
You're absolutely right. And the growing acceptance of gay marriage is part of that evolution.

Incidentally, you use the term "true Christian" a lot. I knew a really nice guy at work who considered himself a Christian, and he'd often say Christians believe this, Christians believe that, and when I said I knew Christians who would disagree with him, he'd say that those people could not really be Christians. He had so many extreme positions that "true Christians" had to agree with him on to really be Christians that there probably aren't more than five or six "true Christians" on the continent of North America.
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Old October 2 2008, 02:08 AM   #66
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Re: Takei And Altman Wed

Here's an interesting editorial from the local university paper on the proposed ban on gay marriage in Florida (Amendment 2), which includes some remarks on the similar initiative in California (Proposition 8). It provides some good food for thought.

Amendment 2 will violate civil rights

What do you get when you cross a turkey, a chicken and a duck? Turducken, maybe. What do you get when you cross a man and another man, or a woman and another woman?

According to the Orlando-based group Florida4Marriage, you get an inferior family who doesn't deserve the same rights and protections that are afforded to a "traditional" family of a man and a woman.

In the interest of full disclosure, Florida4Marriage is actually a coalition of organizations such as the Florida Catholic Conference and the Florida Baptist Convention, and receives most of its funding from the Florida Republican Party.

With that said, Amendment 2, which has been so cleverly dubbed the "Florida Marriage Protection Amendment," is attempting to set the state's gay marriage ban in stone by making it a constitutional amendment.

We unequivocally cannot allow this initiative to pass because not only would the amendment bring about an entirely new civil-rights movement against a blatant injustice, but also would, in effect, dissolve all civil unions in the state of Florida. Even heterosexual couples would lose their common-law marriage status, and subsequently forfeit any benefits that are shared with a significant other.

The state of Michigan passed a similar referendum in 2004, and the Michigan Supreme Court ruled that public institutions could no longer offer health insurance and other benefits to domestic partners. This means that divorced, widowed or just unmarried couples would lose all shared benefits, including health insurance coverage that is essential to the overwhelming majority of seniors in Florida.

Even the Orlando Sentinel editorial board had a rare moment of clarity and stated, "This amendment does more than just target homosexual unions. It puts all manner of domestic partnerships at a possible disadvantage … state law already restricts marriage to a man and a woman, and Florida doesn't recognize gay unions performed in other states. This measure seems more like a cynical attempt to bring out the conservative base in a presidential election year."

Don't worry though; it won't affect the UCF community because, unlike many public and private institutions in Florida, there are no domestic partner benefits for UCF faculty and staff in the first place. This has been a point of contention between groups like GLBSU and UCF administration for years, but it doesn't look like President John Hitt is willing to back down from his ultra-conservative foothold. Case in point: up until last semester, there were no provisions in the student non-discrimination policy for gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender students on campus. So if you're harassed for being homosexual, UCF doesn't (officially) care.

But if Amendment 2 passes, people like Rep. Sally Kern (R-Okla.) who think gays are the "biggest threat our nation has, even more so than terrorism or Islam" will start coming out of the woodwork here in Florida, and our state will begin to look like the peak of the bible belt.

California is currently in a position similar to ours. Proposition 8 was placed on their ballot this summer following the ruling in May to overturn the state's gay marriage ban by the California Supreme Court. Anti-abortion groups immediately went out and began gathering the signatures that they needed to get a constitutional amendment initiative on the ballot.

These "marriage protection" amendments are nothing more than political ploys to get faith-based constituents who don't normally partake in politics to go to the polls and vote for something they feel strongly about. Since they will be there already, why not vote for other conservative candidates and initiatives?

Sentinel columnist Scott Maxwell said it best in a recent article, "[We hear] more and more from people who tend to downplay the bulk of the Bible - which tells us to love and care for one another - [and] instead focus on the handful of passages they believe give them a license to discriminate." He also said that it's this continued negativity from the church that has caused the significant loss of faith in this country over the last several decades.

We couldn't agree more. If Christian morals and American values are at the core of this argument, then why isn't adultery on the constitutional-ban agenda? It was clearly important enough to put it in stone and declare it one of the Ten Commandments, yet we find religious groups trying to ban something that wasn't even on that list.

When you go to the polls in November, think about the widespread repercussions that this initiative would have on civil rights and senior rights. Don't vote for an amendment that would send our state back into the social dark ages.
Personally, I think the biggest threat to the American family and traditional marriage is DIVORCE. Let's get a constitutional ban on divorce. I mean really, if you're going to swear to God "until death do us part", shouldn't the government help you keep your oath, so you can get into Heaven?
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Old October 2 2008, 03:31 PM   #67
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Re: Takei And Altman Wed

davidant32, I was not equating your views to racism, I was addressing your statement that gay marriages should not be allowed because they offended the conservative values of some Americans. Conservative values are not Christian values. (To prevent this thread from being moved to TNZ, I deleted my list of examples. If you're interested, PM me.)

(BTW: The Pastor at Grace Baptist did cite Scripture that condemned race mixing as a sin. Genesis 8:19 -- about every creature on the ark keeping after its own kind -- and, in my all-time favorite misuse of Scripture, 2 Corinthians 6:14 "what fellowship can light have with darkness?")

I can not speak to George Washington's faith, but Thomas Jefferson is one of my personal heroes, so him I know a bit about. You'll note every pro-Christian statement he makes classifies Jesus as a moral teacher and philosopher. Jefferson identifies himself as a "real Christian" -- one whose appreciation for Christ's teachings is not clouded by superstitious beliefs in his godhead. The fact that Jefferson saw no connection between religions that emphasized faith and salvation with what he called "real Christianity" is summed up in his condemnation of the efforts by organized churches to impose their "delusions" on the "good sense" of the American people: "I have sworn upon the altar of God eternal hostility against every form of tyranny over the mind of man."

(Quick Google found several supporting documents. This one is fairly concise:
http://wiki.answers.com/Q/Thomas_Jef...t_does_it_mean)
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Old October 2 2008, 04:42 PM   #68
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Re: Takei And Altman Wed

Steve Roby wrote: View Post
Incidentally, you use the term "true Christian" a lot. I knew a really nice guy at work who considered himself a Christian, and he'd often say Christians believe this, Christians believe that, and when I said I knew Christians who would disagree with him, he'd say that those people could not really be Christians. He had so many extreme positions that "true Christians" had to agree with him on to really be Christians that there probably aren't more than five or six "true Christians" on the continent of North America.
Steve, wars have been fought over that very issue.

As some folks here know, I am an associate pastor of the Soul Saving Station here in Wilmington. For label-philes SSS is a fusion of radical discipleship, Pentecostalism, and street service (soup kitchens, prison ministries, etc.). We have about 60 congregations in the eastern USofA, a half dozen or so in France, Germany, Ghana, and Haiti. We also have a boys' orphanage in Haiti. There is a lot of variation between the congregations, because faith is an individual relationship.

Going out on a limb here by trying to offer a nutshell definition of Christianity:
All it takes to be a "true Christian" is found in Romans 10:9: Believe in your heart and declare with hour mouth that Jesus Christ is who Scripture says he is and that God did what Scripture says he did.

The life of a Christian is governed by two commandments: "Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind." and "Love your neighbor as yourself." (Matt. 22:37-40). Everything else proceeds from that.
(I'm particularly fond of the letter James, younger brother -- okay, half brother -- of Jesus, wrote to explain how a believer should conduct him or herself.)
Sounds pretty straightforward, but Christianity is "the service of perfect freedom" -- every Christian has a free will, the ability to choose how they act and must take full responsibility for their actions.
It would be a lot easier if we had strict rules -- which is why some churches adopt (or create) legalistic doctrines -- but nothing about this was meant to be easy.
One artifact of this freedom is the apparently infinite number of definitions applied to the term "true Christian."
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Old October 2 2008, 04:48 PM   #69
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Re: Takei And Altman Wed

davidant32 wrote: View Post
True Christians are probably the most tolerant people you can find these days, IMO. That is what it means to be Christian. But there is a difference between "tolerance" and "acceptance." Many Christians today will tolerate just about any other view out there, but when it comes to accepting it legally, that's where they get their beef and they have a right to be heard.
I have to ask. Which sect? There are so many sects of Christianity that how can any one claim to be "true Christians"?

There is a key difference here though, and that is recognizing both the dominant religion in the nation as well as the religion on which the nation was arguably founded. All the other religions are protected, but they should only be considered when deciding laws if a large enough body wishes they be considered. What if I were to make up my own religion and be the only one to practice it? I surely could not expect national laws to reflect my own beliefs. But when a vast majority of Christians want their views to be considered, they should be. Would you be in favor of telling an Islamic nation that they need to start legalizing a certain action, even if the Islamic religion does not condone it nor does the majority of the people?
Every nation is entitled to their sovereign rights. I wouldn't dream of telling an Islamic nation that they should do anything. We're only talking about America here.

I don't intend any disrespect to the Christians reading, but, truth be told, isn't "Christian" more of an umbrella term these days? How many sects of Christianity are there? Of course it could be alleged this is a Christian nation. There are enough branches of the Christian church to fill an encyclopedia.

If we're already considering that many different variants on the Christian faith, isn't it just lazy to rule out considering the rest of this country's population when making laws, too?

Also, how would you address the Agnostics and the Atheists? Those are just as legitimate belief structures as Christianity. Would you tell them they aren't relevant to lawmaking because they aren't a dominant societal group?

While it is true that there has been debate and speculation over the founding fathers' religious views (most of which seem to be led by those with an agenda to erase all remaining Christian influences from the public sector) when one "reads between the lines," I tend to base my opinion on their beliefs directly from their own words. Below are a few quotes from Presidents Washington and Jefferson, obtained from initial Google search results:

“It is impossible to rightly govern a nation without God and the Bible.”

“The propitious smiles of Heaven can never be expected on a nation that disregards the eternal rules of order and right which Heaven itself has ordained”

"It is the duty of all Nations to acknowledge the providence of Almighty God, to obey his will, to be grateful for his benefits, and humbly to implore his protection and favors."

~President Washington

“Of all the systems of morality, ancient or modern which have come under my observation, none appears to me so pure as that of Jesus.”

"I am a real Christian, that is to say, a disciple of the doctrines of Jesus."

~President Jefferson
And these are all personal opinions from the speakers. Just like anything any one of us would say here. Jefferson's quote even says, "appears to me". That's a major qualifier for personal opinion there.

Didn't Jesus say "Judge not, lest ye be judged"? How does someone purporting to be following the doctrines of Jesus still consider themselves a true Christian if they're judging others according to the very Scripture they're violating the word of?

TerriO wrote: View Post
davidant32 wrote: View Post
After all, that is why we live in a democracy. I'm as tolerant as the next person, but I just think that multiple sides of this issue need to be viewed, and not just the bashing of the gay-bashers.
I'm not bashing the gay-bashers. I'm trying to get them to think about what they're doing and how easily it could be turned on them.
Good.
Considering that 300 years ago, people calling themselves Christian were burning my kind at the stake; growing up I had a grandfather who went to church EVERY SUNDAY, yet would have made Archie Bunker look like a bastion of liberal tolerance; and I've been on the receiving end of religious persecution from my own blood relatives; even been told I couldn't do certain things that girls can do now because I was a girl, I've seen some of the ugly crap people can do to each other first-hand. And I'm a heterosexual white female, one of the least-likely demographics to know that kind of thing. But sexism, racism, homophobia, religious discrimination? They're all alive and well in the United States. We might like to believe they're not, but they are. We condemn China for denying their people basic human rights, but then we do it to our own people, too. How does denying someone who has not been sentenced to jail their basic human rights become acceptable?

While I'm heterosexual, I have family and friends who are homosexual. I stand up for their rights just as much as I would stand up for the rights of any oppressed group within this country. We're supposed to be a nation where no national religion can legally be established; where all men are created equal; where we fought a war to allow ourselves the rights to "life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness." The Founding Fathers saw to that. This is a democracy, not a theocracy. We are a melting pot of religions, beliefs and cultures. We are supposed to be a nation of inclusion, not exclusion. Why should our laws not reflect that?
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Old October 3 2008, 08:59 PM   #70
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Re: Takei And Altman Wed

Last night, both Sarah Palin and Joe Biden said their ticket would not support gay marraige.
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Old October 3 2008, 09:06 PM   #71
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Re: Takei And Altman Wed

I knew that from when Obama went on that LGBT panel discussion during the primaries, where most of the Democrats but none of the GOP candidates deigned to appear. He supports civil unions, allowing churches to make their own minds up. As a gay man in an eleven year relationship, I tend to agree. I don't want their doctrine forced on me, so my union shouldn't be forced on them. If they don't want to call it marriage, fine. But my union should have all the legal benefits and ramifications of any other "marriage" and be recognized across the country, not evaporate when I cross state lines.
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Old October 3 2008, 10:27 PM   #72
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Re: Takei And Altman Wed

brains! wrote: View Post
I knew that from when Obama went on that LGBT panel discussion during the primaries, where most of the Democrats but none of the GOP candidates deigned to appear. He supports civil unions, allowing churches to make their own minds up. As a gay man in an eleven year relationship, I tend to agree. I don't want their doctrine forced on me, so my union shouldn't be forced on them. If they don't want to call it marriage, fine. But my union should have all the legal benefits and ramifications of any other "marriage" and be recognized across the country, not evaporate when I cross state lines.
That's all fine and good, but "separate but equal" still leaves a bad taste in my mouth, just as it should everyone else's.
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Old October 3 2008, 10:54 PM   #73
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Re: Takei And Altman Wed

davidant32 wrote: View Post
Last night, both Sarah Palin and Joe Biden said their ticket would not support gay marraige.
Yeah that struck a nerve with me ...
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Old October 3 2008, 10:55 PM   #74
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Re: Takei And Altman Wed

I think that marriage should not be a government issue at all. The legal, contractual etc aspects should be handled under a purely governmental title like civil unions, for everyone. Marriage should be reserved for churches.
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Old October 4 2008, 12:10 AM   #75
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Re: Takei And Altman Wed

Guartho wrote: View Post
I think that marriage should not be a government issue at all. The legal, contractual etc aspects should be handled under a purely governmental title like civil unions, for everyone. Marriage should be reserved for churches.
No thanks. My wife and I are married, thank you very much, and no church had anything to do with it.
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