The conservative case for same sex marriage

August 26th, 2012 at 12:00 pm by David Farrar

Some people think that only liberals support , and all conservatives are against it. I believe there is a strong argument that allowing is a conservative thing to do. I’ll cite a couple of conservative leaders in this argument. The first is Theodore Olsen writing at the Daily Beast. Olsen was the United States Solictor-General under George W Bush and Assistant Attorney-General for Ronald Reagan. Incidentially Olson was also Bush’s (private) lawyer for Bush v Gore in the Supreme Court and his wife was on one of the 9/11 hijacked flights. Also he is a founding member of the Federalist Society. Olsen writes:

Many of my fellow conservatives have an almost knee-jerk hostility toward gay marriage. This does not make sense, because same-sex unions promote the values conservatives prize. Marriage is one of the basic building blocks of our neighborhoods and our nation. At its best, it is a stable bond between two individuals who work to create a loving household and a social and economic partnership. We encourage couples to marry because the commitments they make to one another provide benefits not only to themselves but also to their families and communities. Marriage requires thinking beyond one’s own needs. It transforms two individuals into a union based on shared aspirations, and in doing so establishes a formal investment in the well-being of society. The fact that individuals who happen to be gay want to share in this vital social institution is evidence that conservative ideals enjoy widespread acceptance. Conservatives should celebrate this, rather than lament it.

So well said. And on the choice issue:

I understand, but reject, certain religious teachings that denounce homosexuality as morally wrong, illegitimate, or unnatural; and I take strong exception to those who argue that same-sex relationships should be discouraged by society and law. Science has taught us, even if history has not, that gays and lesbians do not choose to be homosexual any more than the rest of us choose to be heterosexual. To a very large extent, these characteristics are immutable, like being left-handed. And, while our Constitution guarantees the freedom to exercise our individual religious convictions, it equally prohibits us from forcing our beliefs on others. I do not believe that our society can ever live up to the promise of equality, and the fundamental rights to life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness, until we stop invidious discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation.

Olsen also deals with history:

It seems inconceivable today that only 40 years ago there were places in this country where a black woman could not legally marry a white man. And it was only 50 years ago that 17 states mandated segregated public education—until the Supreme Court unanimously struck down that practice in Brown v. Board of Education. Most Americans are proud of these decisions and the fact that the discriminatory state laws that spawned them have been discredited. I am convinced that Americans will be equally proud when we no longer discriminate against gays and lesbians and welcome them into our society.

And the same applies here in NZ. Does anyone think the 1986 Homosexual Law Reform was wrong? Is anyone saying NZ is worse off because we allowed civil unions? To the contrary those who fought against civil unions are now citing them as so successful, they claim there is no need for same sex marriage.

Then in the UK, we have Conservative Party Leader and PM David Cameron:

But for me, leadership on families also means speaking out on marriage. Marriage is not just a piece of paper. It pulls couples together through the ebb and flow of life. It gives children stability. And it says powerful things about what we should value. So yes, we will recognise marriage in the tax system.

But we’re also doing something else. I once stood before a Conservative conference and said it shouldn’t matter whether commitment was between a man and a woman, a woman and a woman, or a man and another man. You applauded me for that. Five years on, we’re consulting on legalising gay marriage.

And to anyone who has reservations, I say: Yes, it’s about equality, but it’s also about something else: commitment. Conservatives believe in the ties that bind us; that society is stronger when we make vows to each other and support each other. So I don’t support gay marriage despite being a Conservative. I support gay marriage because I’m a Conservative.

Also London Conservative Mayor Boris Johnson has said:

One of the amazing things about London is that it’s not only got a declining crime rate, declining murder rate, more theatres than New York, less rainfall than Rome but it’s also one of the few places in the country where the rate of marriage is actually increasing and I see absolutely no reason why that happy state should be denied to anybody in our country. And that’s why I’m supporting the Out4Marriage campaign.

Back in the US prominent Republicans who support same sex marriage include Dick Cheney, Laura Bush and Cindy McCain.

In Australia we also have the former Leader of the Australian Liberal Party, Malcolm Turnbull who has said:

Families are the foundation of our society and I am firmly of the view that that we would be a stronger society if more people were married – and by that I mean formally, legally married – and fewer were divorced. …

And I have to say that I am utterly unpersuaded by the proposition that my marriage to Lucy, or indeed any marriage, is undermined by two gay men or two lesbians setting up house down the road – whether it is called a marriage or not.

Regrettably, this aspect of the debate is dripping with the worst sort of hypocrisy, and the deepest pools are all too often found among the most sanctimonious.

Let us be honest with each other. The threat to marriage is not the gays. It is a lack of loving commitment – whether it is found in the form of neglect, indifference, cruelty or adultery, to name just a few manifestations of the loveless desert in which too many marriages come to grief.

And Turnbull concludes:

If the threat to marriage today is lack of commitment, then surely other couples making and maintaining that commitment sets a good rather than a bad example.

Are not the gays who seek the right to marry, to formalise their commitment to each other, holding up a mirror to the heterosexuals who are marrying less frequently and divorcing more often?

There is a strong public interest in people living together and supporting and helping each other.

If, for just a moment, I can pretend to be an economist and know the price of everything and the value of nothing, there will plainly be less demand for social services, medical expenses, hospital care if people, especially older people, like Michael and Johan [the former Justice Kirby and his partner, Johan van Vloten], live together as opposed to being in lonely isolation consoled only by their respective cats.

Study after study has demonstrated that people are better off financially, healthier, happier if they are married, and indeed, I repeat, if they are formally married as opposed to simply living together.

Personally I’m very happy to be in the same camp as Dick Cheney, Boris Johnson, Theodore Olsen, David Cameron, Laura Bush, Malcolm Turnbull and John Key. The views above I think make clear that if you put aside the religious argument, then allowing same sex couples to marry is what conservative MPs should vote for.

Tomorrow I am going to blog on the religious issue, and my ideal situation where marriage is purely a religious ceremony, not a state institution. However while it is a state institution, it should not discriminate between types of couples.

Then on Tuesday I’m going to blog on the politics of the same sex marriage issue both in NZ and around the world.

On Wednesday the vote on the first reading is expected, and I imagine you’ll hear a lot less on the issue for six months or so.

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125 Responses to “The conservative case for same sex marriage”

  1. kowtow (8,485 comments) says:

    The conservative case for so called same sex marriage……….

    there isn’t one.

    Conservatives sek to conserve the constitution,God ,King and Country.

    If you’re not for that you’re not a conserver,therefore not a conservative.

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  2. Pauleastbay (5,035 comments) says:

    kowtow

    We don’t have a constitution, we don’t have a king and we are totally lacking in any proof there is a god.

    Please don’t give conservatives a bad name by lumping all in to a group that believe in things that don’t exist.

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  3. tom hunter (4,848 comments) says:

    Right! Well, that’s the end of discussion about Neil Armstrong, the deaths of our soldiers in Afghanistan, the callous stupidity of Sumner-Burstyn, the bullshit surrounding the left-wing claims about Burger King and other nasty far-left memes – and the larger meanings surrounding all these things.

    Not to mention zero discussion about the economy, unemployment, the numbers departing to Australia and so forth or any of the ten billion other things more important than this endless, endless, endless fucking subject!

    In short, the day is now stuffed, re Kiwiblog!

    [DPF: Tom you are normally more rational than this. How does having a thread on one issue, stop people debating other issues in other threads? That is exactly why we have separate threads. Arguably by having a separate post on a topic, it also means less likely that topic dominates general debate]

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  4. Hamnida (905 comments) says:

    This should be a simple debate for the Right and Left.

    It’s the 21st Century.

    If people want to marry, gay or not, let them marry.

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  5. Andrei (2,656 comments) says:

    If people want to marry, gay or not, let them marry.

    Indeed yes let them marry within the constraints of the institution (ie one male and one female) and for the purpose for which marriage was ordained, that is for the procreation of the species.

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  6. Shunda barunda (2,983 comments) says:

    DPF, the problem as I see it is that by redefining marriage the ideals will change.

    Marriage to me is about a life long commitment, sexual monogamy, providing a stable foundation for my children (economically and emotionally) and a commitment to my partners personal development (and she mine).

    My concern is that these ideals will simply be replaced or at the very least eroded.

    Surely a tradition can’t stay a tradition if it is redefined, heterosexual relationships will always be the majority ‘breeding’ relationship so what is wrong with recognising this fact (as essential to our biology and beneficial to our nation) while giving minority relationships the same legal rights and status under NZ law with civil unions?

    What would happen to loving gay couples if they couldn’t have access to traditional marriage? what would stop them following their own ideals with exactly the same legal recognition with civil unions? We can resolve the adoption issue simply by developing a universal criteria for all citizens regardless of gender or orientation.

    I just see a relationship between a man and a woman as unique enough to warrant an exclusive tradition, there are totally different dynamics and challenges to overcome. Heterosexual marriage ideals represent the biological ideal to reproduce our species, I think this in itself is significant enough for the government to have a strong interest in the institution remaining exclusively heterosexual.

    And that is why as a conservative I don’t believe the law should change.

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  7. Chuck Bird (4,884 comments) says:

    “then allowing same sex couples to marry is what conservative MPs should vote for.”

    How many Conservative MPs are there – maybe 20 or 30? John Key certainly is not one of them.

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  8. Lucia Maria (2,428 comments) says:

    Shunda barunda at 12:41 pm,

    Well said!

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  9. Tautaioleua (305 comments) says:

    Zzz.

    DPF, your extensive one-sided coverage of this issue is a real eye sore. Conservatives conserve tradition, your social politics align a little more to the centre if you ask me.

    [DPF: I am not reporting fair and balanced on this issue. I am advocating for my point of view. That is you know what a blog is about. I don't claim to be a conservative myself. I was just making the case that both liberals and conservatives can support same sex marriage]

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  10. Reid (16,467 comments) says:

    Personally I’m very happy to be in the same camp as Dick Cheney, Boris Johnson, Theodore Olsen, David Cameron, Laura Bush, Malcolm Turnbull and John Key.

    John Key is a poll driven fruitcake as evidenced by the story behind his reversal of the teacher ratios which arose because DPF did a poll on it, showed it to Key who was in London at the time, Key had a conference call with Parata and lo, the next day the backdown was announced. Presumably there was no discussion as to whether or not it was the right thing to do or if there was, it was overruled by the exigency of being popular. On the gay issue DPF mentioned awhile ago polls show quite a majority in favour so it’s hardly a stretch to conclude once again, regardless of right or wrong, Key is once again taking the popular, as opposed to correct, approach on this issue.

    Of course Key argues disingenuously that he weally weally cares about gay people but I bet you 55 million dollars that if the polls showed the majority of people were not in favour of gay marriage Key would not be taking this approach. Tactically this is an undercutting of the traditional leftists by having Key support an issue like this which would typically be supported by the left. But the reason for the support of this policy is because the population, as usual, is confused about what it represents. The population support it is because (a) they don’t understand what a big deal it is because they don’t understand how social engineering works and (b) they do think it’s discrimination because that’s what people and in particular, the media, claim. And notice what’s happened since day one is typical leftist propaganda tactics which they do all the time on issues like AGW and fracking and peak oil and this is just another one. And that is they present the lie (that it is discriminatory) as if it was a prima facie obvious fact, there was no doubt, of course it is and how could it not be. That’s what the media and the lefties do all the time, think back for example to the anti-smacking law and how the media talked about that, from day one. It’s happened again here, the difference with this is, many conservatives are doing the same thing. DPF presents the “of course its discrimination” all the time in the way he words things on this blog. Disappointing, I have to say, to see him undertake those tactics.

    See it’s only a human wights issue if you can demonstrate there is discrimination and in this case there is none since civil union grants every single legal right available. And if you claim adoption is the difference well then, that’s an adoption debate isn’t it, and what does gay marriage have to do with gay adoption? Nothing, that’s what. But that inconvenient truth is never mentioned by the proponents of this debate. Never. See how insidious the propaganda is?

    So it’s not discriminatory but the population doesn’t think that simple thing through because their average IQ is slightly above that of amoebas, when it comes to political issues and they get their opinion on that from the media and guess what, the media isn’t going to tell the truth on that.

    The second thing is: what’s the big deal about letting gays get married? The big deal is that as a social construct, people equate marriage with family. Those two things are inextricably linked in people’s minds. Family means children and more importantly it means the unit which people can count on as the strongest possible support unit throughout their entire lives. Friends may come and go and romantic partners may come and go but the one thing that people can count on, if they can count on anything, is their family. (Note: don’t get confused about whether all families are like this, that isn’t relevant. A social construct is what most people experience and what most people hold as a general concept. When you’re talking social construct, individual cases of particular family units are not relevant and neither are examples on the margin such as childless couples.) Having gays being able to marry moves marriage as a social construct away from that inextricable link to family and toward a marriage equates to sex social construct. This is because a man and woman marriage, in the social construct world, = children. A man-man or woman-woman marriage, in the social construct world, = sex. In social engineering terms, this is prime objective for the gay marriage movement and this is precisely why it’s global. Has it ever occurred to any of the proponents to ask yourself: how come every single western country is having this same debate at this moment? Does that mean anything to you? Of course not, it’s just a great big coincidence, there is nothing designed about it, it just happened that way for no particular reason.

    To understand the ramifications of what I just said you need to truly understand social engineering and how it works on a daily basis. Most people here don’t, from what I’ve observed in their comments. And if most people here don’t, then joe sixpack has absolutely no chance of grasping it. That’s the sad thing. That people today are giving away the priceless gift of their grandchildren’s wellbeing, and they don’t even know it.

    People like Key should know it, so should people like DPF, since both of those spend their lives in politics unlike the rest of us who do it on the side because we have day jobs. But I frankly doubt that either or them do, since to know it, and still go ahead with it, puts one into a special class of evil, and I don’t for a minute think either are like that. But sadly that only leaves one conclusion. That Key, DPF, Whale and all of you commenters who support this, are in fact, on this issue, in that class which Stalin termed, the useful idiots. In 40 years – two generations – when the social engineering has taken hold, you’ll see your folly and I hope then you remember reading this because even if its too late to change it, at least you can say, you were warned.

    [DPF: I don't know what story you are referring to about alleged polls on education. As for this being "folly", well people claimed exactly the same thing in 1986 over homosexual law reform and in 2004 over civil unions. Is there not a limit to how often you can cry wolf?]

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  11. krazykiwi (9,186 comments) says:

    Shunda +1

    DPF’s instructions appear to be to wear down those who support the definition of marriage remaining the same.

    It’s working.

    [DPF: Oh a conspiracy theory. I like these. Who do these instructions come from? Is it John Key? Is it Louisa Wall? Is it the global homosexual alliance to destroy civilisation? Please let me know where to send the invoices :-)]

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  12. iMP (2,385 comments) says:

    I’m progressive and because I live in the 21st C. want to change the definition of “Homosexual” to include “one man and one woman,” so there is equality and no more discrimination.

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  13. Shunda barunda (2,983 comments) says:

    Well said Reid, but unfortunately, I feel the tide has really turned on this one and there is little we can do about it.
    The fact that society has become so disengaged with any issue beyond a superficial ‘feel good’ 12 year old level is bloody disturbing if you ask me.

    Politics is like a reality TV show to most people, and if you dare show evidence of deeper thought you are usually identified as a bigot and promptly shouted down regardless of any real evidence of bigotry.

    “you know stuff, you’re dangerous”

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  14. Urban Redneck (234 comments) says:

    Why would homosexual males in particular want to get “married” when their relationships are diametrically opposed to what a traditional man/woman marriage is supposed to be?

    Male homosexuals are notoriously promiscuous. A 1984 study by two homosexual doctors David McWhirter and Andrew Mattison (themselves a couple) interviewed 156 male homosexual couples about monogamy. They found that “fidelity is defined not in terms of sexual behaviour but by emotional commitment to one another”. In other words, unlike heterosexuals, male homosexuals did not define sleeping around as unfaithfulness, unless one of those liaisons blossomed into something more that became a threat to the core relationship. Also, a study in Advocate (a leading gay publication) in 1994 found that 52% of respondents claimed to be monogamous, yet 85% of those same respondents reported that the biggest problem in their relationships was fights caused when partners cheated and an emotional attachment to the new partner developed – do the math on that one !

    Some of my fellow conservatives mistakenly believe that by extending marriage “rights” to homosexuals, it will help to temper the sheer unadulterated licentiousness of homosexual men. It won’t.

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  15. XavierG (34 comments) says:

    Andrei’s conflation of the religious sanctity of marriage (as “ordained”) with its supposed biological role (and implicitly evolutionary – the imperative of continuation of the species) is exquisite. Deliciously juxtaposed.

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  16. kowtow (8,485 comments) says:

    Paul east bay

    You’re not doing yourself any favours being so literalist,even fundamentalist.

    Do some reading. We have a constitution,a monarchy and God is a long traditional concept to conservatives.

    The term “conservative” comes from the Tory tradition in Britain. Conservatives like I said,seek to conserve tradition etc not these new fangled fashions which will destroy the west.

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  17. Fletch (6,390 comments) says:

    Some people think that only liberals support same sex marriage, and all conservatives are against it. I believe there is a strong argument that allowing same sex marriage is a conservative thing to do.

    Not all liberals are for it either. There are just as many gays against it.

    eg, this from Christchurch –

    Gay and lesbian marriage may be a hot topic in Parliament, but “the average gay guy couldn’t give a toss about it”, a stalwart of Christchurch’s gay community says.

    Aprivate member’s bill to allow same-sex couples to marry was today drawn from a ballot and will be debated by Parliament, potentially as early as next month.

    The bill, led by Labour MP Louisa Wall, is likely to be subject to a conscience vote but will have the support of Labour leader David Shearer and all Green Party MPs.

    Bruce Williamson, who has run gay nightclubs in Christchurch since the early 1980s, was “not even remotely interested in the issue”.

    “The average gay guy couldn’t care less about anything that resembles the institution of conventional heterosexual marriage,” he said.

    “It has no relevance to their lives. The majority couldn’t give a toss about it and I have no idea why people are obsessing over it.”

    The drawing of the bill was a “non-event” for Williamson, and he said many people in the gay and lesbian community were asking “why we are discussing it” via online blogs and forums.

    He believed the controversial issue was “being driven by only a few people who enjoy a good bandwagon to climb on”, but the issue of same-sex marriages was not a “common topic of conversation” in Christchurch’s gay community.

    “I don’t need validity of any relationship I am in, and in my experience others feel the same way. People couldn’t care less about it,” he said.

    http://www.stuff.co.nz/the-press/news/7356494/Marriage-Gay-guys-not-interested

    I have posted this before and some have said, well this is just one gay guys opinion, but notice he is a ‘stalwart’ of the gay community and has run gay nightclubs in Christchurch since the 1980s; in other words, he should know what the community is saying, both via word of mouth and (as he says) via internet chat rooms and forums. The thing is being pushed by the liberal elite, not by gays.

    Also, this from a gay blogger, reprinted in the Irish Daily Mail –

    Actually, gay people should defend the traditional understanding of marriage as strongly as everyone else. Given that it is being undermined in the name of gay people, with consequences for future generations, it is all the more important that gay people who are opposed to gay marriage speak up.

    This is why the demand for gay marriage goes doubly wrong. It is not a demand for marriage to be extended to gay people – it is a demand for marriage to be redefined. The understanding of marriage as an institution that exists and is supported for the sake of strong families changes to an understanding of marriage as merely the end-point of romance. If gay couples are considered equally eligible for marriage, even though gay relationships do not tend towards child-raising and cannot by definition give a child a mother and a father, the crucial understanding of what marriage is actually mainly for has been discarded.

    The support and status that marriage entails is not a societal bonus for falling in love and agreeing to make a relationship lasting. That is not, of course, to say that love and romance are not an important part of marriage. But they are not the reason it has special status. If romance were the reason for supporting marriage, there would be no grounds for differentiating which relationships should be included and which should not. But that is not and never has been the nature of marriage.

    Marriage is vital as a framework within which children can be brought up by a man and woman. Not all marriages, of course, involve child-raising. And there are also, for that matter, same-sex couples already raising children. But the reality is that marriages tend towards child-raising and same-sex partnerships do not.

    What that amounts to is the kind of marriage that puts adults before children. That, in my opinion, is ultimately selfish, and far too high a price to pay simply for the token gesture of treating opposite-sex relationships and same-sex relationships identically. And it is a token gesture. Isn’t it common sense, after all, to treat different situations differently? To put it personally, I do not feel in the least bit discriminated against by the fact that I cannot marry someone of the same-sex. I understand and accept that there are good reasons for this.

    https://richardtwaghorne.wordpress.com/2011/04/05/gay-marriage/

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  18. thedavincimode (6,759 comments) says:

    Aaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaahhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhh ….

    … sob … sob … :(

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  19. Reid (16,467 comments) says:

    [DPF: I don't know what story you are referring to about alleged polls on education. As for this being "folly", well people claimed exactly the same thing in 1986 over homosexual law reform and in 2004 over civil unions. Is there not a limit to how often you can cry wolf?]

    The polls on education story comes straight from Matthew Hooten on National Radio Monday politics the week after the backdown was announced.

    Some national party politicians in 1986, notably Norm Jones, were claiming that Homosexual Law Reform would make lots a red-blooded Kiwi want to rush around bumming each other. I never thought that would happen and besides I thought it was ridiculous and cruel to have it illegal and so I supported that law reform. So I was correct back then DPF – red blooded males didn’t all of a sudden start bumming each other. And who knows, maybe I’m right again, with this one. We’ll know in 40 years, in 20 we’ll be able to see lead indicators begin to emerge.

    The fact that society has become so disengaged with any issue beyond a superficial ‘feel good’ 12 year old level is bloody disturbing if you ask me.

    Well said to you at 12:41 as well Shunda. Used half the words I did. Lots of societal attributes disturb me these days but at a macro level this whole dumbed down phenomena is very disturbing isn’t it. It’s not only that people are dumber than they used to be since our education system is definitely lower grade with each passing generation, it’s also that people spend most time on trivial self-obsessed entertainment.

    It does matter, not only on long term subtle things like this issue but when people were sucked into the whole war on terror with Iraq WMDs, that’s when people’s dumbness really becomes an urgent issue. It’ll happen again soon, when the west/Israel bombs Iran and starts WWIII. You watch the western propaganda start flying then, all the useful idiots will be in full flight, any objectivity will go right out the window and any objectors will be utterly excoriated. You watch.

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  20. Chuck Bird (4,884 comments) says:

    Reid, sorry to disagree with you about the polls. It is very doubtful that the majority would vote for homosexual marriage any more than the majority supported parental authority being undermined by the State. If libertarian and homosexual lobbies thought they would win at a referendum they would go for it.

    I tried to explain this to AG a law professor but gave up but I am sure you will understand. About 86% voted against the smacking but Key would not change it. People thought he was either stupid or had high principles. Both were wrong.

    A number of years ago I did a lot of phone polling for ACT when they were polling about 7%. We would first ask people which party they would vote for. Then we would ask a second choice or one they might consider. If they said Labour, Greens we would just say thanks for you time. If they said National, ACT we would try to get them to do an in depth interview and find the issues that could make them change there vote.

    In the case of smacking Key found out most people voted with their wallets and would not go against him as he was the same as Labour. However, if he went the other way he stood to lose a lot of female voters.

    Bloggers like DPF, Slater and Odgers are obsessed with this issue because of their ideology. Key is much of pragmatist although he is quite liberal. I will be making a submission for a binding referendum. It will be interesting to see what support I get.

    It seems to me that libertarians are very much like some fundamentalist Christians. Look in the US some would like abortion banned with no exceptions. If there were a poll done in NZ I would think less than 5% would support such a law. However, a small group of conservatives would support such a law and oppose a referendum if they could get their way.

    The libertarians are much the same. They are so convinced of there greatly superior intellect that they will use any means to get their way even against a majority that they will lie, cheat and bully.

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  21. bhudson (4,740 comments) says:

    See it’s only a human wights issue if you can demonstrate there is discrimination and in this case there is none since civil union grants every single legal right available.

    Reid, there is discrimination and not every single legal right is made available under civil unions.

    People in a Sate-sanctioned same sex union are discriminated against as their union is not permitted the status of ‘marriage’ that State-sanctioned heterosexual unions are afforded.

    Furthermore, equating marriage with children is a specious argument as marriage is not a requirement to have, or to raise, children. Neither are people in marriages required to have children to validate their marriage.

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  22. Fletch (6,390 comments) says:

    bhudson, of course there is discrimination by the State, and the State has every right to do so. There is also discrimination agasint those wanting to marry multiple partners, or a minor, or a family member, or an animal; those same groups will STILL be “discriminated” against even if gay marriage becomes law.

    I might feel “discriminated” against for driving 70 km per hour in a 50 K zone, but there are good reasons for it, just as there are good reasons against gay marriage.

    The State discriminates, and has every right to do so.
    Everybody just can’t have what they want because they want it.

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  23. bhudson (4,740 comments) says:

    Fletch,

    According to Reid, 1:05pm, there is no discrimination against same sex unions; they have the same legal rights (adoption notwithstanding.) Therefore, according to him, it cannot be a question of human rights.

    I pointed out that he is incorrect. There is discrimination – marriage holds a legal status and same sex unions are denied that status; they are denied that right that heterosexual unions are afforded.

    According to Reid’s criteria, therefore, the case for same sex marriage can be argued on the grounds of human rights.

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  24. Shunda barunda (2,983 comments) says:

    Furthermore, equating marriage with children is a specious argument as marriage is not a requirement to have, or to raise, children. Neither are people in marriages required to have children to validate their marriage.

    That is a ridiculous (though infuriatingly common) argument. Seldom does anything in life exist in perfect adherence to the ideal situation, that in no way reduces the importance of those ideals or diminishes them because minority groups exist.

    If we weren’t so mind numbingly adverse to using generalizations in the correct context this stupid argument wouldn’t hold up beyond discussion among twelve year old kids.

    The reality is very simple, in general married couples have children, lots of em, and marriage remains the ideal social and societal institution to provide the best outcomes for the next generation.

    And guess what? even among those that choose not to marry, the most successful aspects of their relationship will almost always be directly comparable to marriage ideals any way.

    Marriage is a tradition with high ideals, lets keep it that way.

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  25. Reid (16,467 comments) says:

    Chuck thanks for that thoughtful comment. I’m getting my polling assumption from a comment DPF made a few weeks ago to that effect: that polls indicated the majority of people do support it. I hope you’re right and DPF is wrong, it would be great if the public did not support it but the politicians seem to. This things is going to happen, I’m afraid.

    People in a Sate-sanctioned same sex union are discriminated against as their union is not permitted the status of ‘marriage’ that State-sanctioned heterosexual unions are afforded.

    Thanks too bhudson for your thoughtful comment. However can you be more specific here, what material legal right is not granted by a civil union that is granted to a married couple? i.e. what do you mean by “the status of marriage” in a material sense.

    Equating marriage with children is not specious in the social construct world. That is what it is. A social construct is a collective mental model held by all people in a given society which in this case, is the western world, not just a given country. It is of necessity composed of a generalised “average” of whatever the concept is most generally composed of. That’s why I said things like childless marriages are irrelevent because even if instances of those number in the millions, which they do, by comparison to the generalised “typical” model, they aren’t relevant. That’s what I was saying. Note too (and I’m not saying you were doing this I’m only mentioning it because I’nm anticipating one or more lefties coming on and getting confused about this) that you cannot attach a value judgement to a social construct. It’s a thing that exists. It’s an object, in the world. It’s not a physical object, it’s a thought object, but it is an object. And therefore its pointless to imagine that a nice fluffy warm social construct would be much better than a cold heartless cruel social construct because that’s totally irrelevant. Just as any object just “is,” so too is a social construct. And attaching moral value judgements to it is as pointless as attaching those things to any other object.

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  26. Sofia (857 comments) says:

    The Human Rights Commission says religious ministers will be able to refuse to marry same-sex couples.

    Chief Commissioner David Rutherford says because religious marriage is a core part of some religions, they’re free to refuse ceremonies which don’t fit in with their beliefs.

    “There is really only one person in the country that must marry someone, and that’s the register of marriages, and the appropriate forms being filled out. All other marriage celebrants have the discretion to marry or not marry anyone.”

    And …
    “Marriage is a contract between two people. We believe it’s good when it’s blessed in a religious context, but religion doesn’t make marriage.” – Reverend Robert Forsyth, Anglican Diocese of Sydney

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  27. Fletch (6,390 comments) says:

    bhudson, perhaps I should say then, that the State makes a distinction between married and non-married, or married and other forms of, well, relationship.

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  28. Don the Kiwi (1,757 comments) says:

    [DPF: I don't know what story you are referring to about alleged polls on education. As for this being "folly", well people claimed exactly the same thing in 1986 over homosexual law reform and in 2004 over civil unions. Is there not a limit to how often you can cry wolf?]

    This remark is typical of progressive liberals so entrenched in their own limited view.

    Modern Extreme Islamic Fundamentalism didn’t start with 911. It had its inception back in the 1930’s. To suggest that a law change has an immediate detrimental efect on society is shallow thinking – much like the Russian cosmonaught in 1962 saying, “I didn’t see God up in space, therfore he doesn’t exist.” – is hardly a convincing argument for or against the existence of God.

    It is certain that, over time – maybe a couple of generations – if the meaning of Marriage is changed in law, it will have a detrimental effect on society, as well as a whole new raft of social crimes will be invented.

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  29. bhudson (4,740 comments) says:

    The reality is very simple, in general married couples have children, lots of em, and marriage remains the ideal social and societal institution to provide the best outcomes for the next generation.

    Shunda, nothing I wrote disagrees with that. It remains fact, however, that marriage is an institution that does not require children, nor is it a requirement in order to have children.

    You can argue your ideal for what it should be all you like. Your ideal (vis-a-vis children) is not borne out in the legislation around marriage.

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  30. Andrei (2,656 comments) says:

    Why does the State have to sanction a same sex union?

    You need the Governments permission before you engage in sodomy in the 21st century?

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  31. RRM (9,924 comments) says:

    Why does the state have to sanction a heterosexual couple’s marriage then Andrei?

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  32. Ryan Sproull (7,153 comments) says:

    Abolish the Marriage Act, make all marriages legal civil unions with the same rights currently afforded to legal marriages, and let people call their legal unions whatever they like.

    Next problem?

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  33. bhudson (4,740 comments) says:

    Reid,

    The material legal right is ‘to be married’. Marriage is defined legally and holds a legal status. Members of a civil union are not permitted that status.

    As a defined term, marriage can be, and is, used in other legislation. This can require very explicit amendment to refine Parliament’s will in the legislation – e.g. the Property (Relationships) Act which has had to be explicitly amended to afford shared property rights to same sex couples.

    Each such reference and additional redefinition or clarification reinforces the discrimination against the civil union couple; the absence of their right to hold the status of marriage.

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  34. Andrei (2,656 comments) says:

    Why does the state have to sanction a heterosexual couple’s marriage then Andrei?

    The reason why marriage is a universal institution in functional societies, my friend, is because it assigns responsibility of any children born of the female partner of the union, known as the wife to male partner of that union known as the husband.

    This is also why sexual exclusivity between the two is important and adultery a very serious offence.

    When marriage breaks down so will society within a generation or two.

    It leads to social catastrophe

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  35. Reid (16,467 comments) says:

    But bhudson you still haven’t given me a specific instance of a case where legal rights are granted to one but not the other. The act you cite is one which was amended to grant those rights.

    So I still don’t understand your point. You seem to be saying the inability to use the label of “marriage” is discrimination in and off itself and I don’t understand this argument since we are talking about a word. I don’t understand how a word can be discriminatory, when it’s a mere noun, it’s not pejorative, it’s just a word. So what if legislation needs to be amended, that happens all the time.

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  36. Hamnida (905 comments) says:

    It is simply amazing that this is still an issue 2012.

    I think the percentage of MPs who will vote for same sex marriage will be very high.

    If you don’t want to attend a gay wedding, you wont have to. If you get invited and don’t want to attend, simply inform the bride/bride, groom/bride, groom/groom you will not or can not attend.

    I think its says something when Cameron, Key, L Bush, C McCain, B Johnson et al all support gay rights.

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  37. Reid (16,467 comments) says:

    Hamnida no-one cares whether you support it or not. This thread is all about why you either support it or not. It’s about your reasoning behind your decision. So why do you support it?

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  38. Hamnida (905 comments) says:

    Reid – because I think all people should have the same rights, whether gay or straight.

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  39. Reid (16,467 comments) says:

    Yes that was predictable Hamnida, but why do you think gays don’t have the same rights under civil union – refer to my discussions with bhudson above on that. What precise rights don’t they have apart from adoption and if they want adoption then it’s not a gay marriage debate, it’s an adoption debate.

    If you disagree with that reasoning then pray explain where it’s wrong using logic and facts.

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  40. bhudson (4,740 comments) says:

    But bhudson you still haven’t given me a specific instance of a case where legal rights are granted to one but not the other. The act you cite is one which was amended to grant those rights.

    But I did Reid. I gave you the material example of the Property (Relationsihps) Act. It was due to the discrimination resulting from the legal rights of the status of marriage being denied to same sex couples that the Act had to be amended. That fact that an amendment has since been made does not detact from the absence of the legal rights afforded the status at the time.

    And the discrimination of legal rights afforded to same sex couples remains. By all means, trawl through the legislation on http://www.legislation.govt.nz to find more. I have met your condition of finding a material example – it is not over to me to find any more for you.

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  41. Hamnida (905 comments) says:

    I said, I think gay and straight people should have equal rights.

    So by that I mean, gay and straight people can have a civil union or get married.

    My reason – I want to live in a society where people have equal rights.

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  42. chiz (1,144 comments) says:

    Fletch:I have posted this before and some have said, well this is just one gay guys opinion, but notice he is a ‘stalwart’ of the gay community and has run gay nightclubs in Christchurch since the 1980s; in other words, he should know what the community is saying, both via word of mouth and (as he says) via internet chat rooms and forums

    The question, however, is whether the views he is being exposed to are representative. Gays who go to nightclubs are likely to be more outgoing, and possibly more promiscuous, than gays who don’t. And the blogs that he reads may not be representative either. Imagine, as an example, a union activist who only reads The Standard and Red Alert, who then says – “well, I talk to people and read blogs so I know what most people think”.

    The first time you posted that link I responded with this which you have apparently forgotten about:

    The pair said they knew of other gay and lesbian couples in Christchurch who would choose to marry if the option was made available.

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  43. Reid (16,467 comments) says:

    That fact that an amendment has since been made does not detact from the absence of the legal rights afforded the status at the time.

    But bhudson the very fact the amendment was made removes the discrimination and like I said, this is the standard legal practice. There’s nothing unusual about it. It happens all the time.

    Once again, you’re back to arguing it’s about the use of a noun. One group can’t use a noun, and you claim that’s discrimination. Well with respect mate, that’s a ridiculous argument. Legally, the remedy is there. Amend the legislation. So that’s the remedy, and it’s well used in all sorts of arenas. If that remedy wasn’t there, THEN you might have a point, but it is, so you don’t.

    I said, I think gay and straight people should have equal rights. So by that I mean, gay and straight people can have a civil union or get married. My reason – I want to live in a society where people have equal rights.

    Hamnida, are you really thick or are you just pretending. Yes, we know you think that. But WHY do you think they are being discriminated against? i.e. Why do you think civil unions discriminate against gays?

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  44. Sofia (857 comments) says:

    Reid – It is because they simply want to say “We are married” – normal and accepted, the same as any conventionally married couple.
    Not “We are civilly united” – fucking weird and different

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  45. chiz (1,144 comments) says:

    chuck bird:It is very doubtful that the majority would vote for homosexual marriage any more than the majority supported parental authority being undermined by the State.

    What makes you think the majority wouldn’t vote for gay marriage? Two separate polls show otherwise.

    If libertarian and homosexual lobbies thought they would win at a referendum they would go for it.

    Would voting be optional or compulsory in this referendum? Do you understand that self-selecting samples aren’t statistically valid?

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  46. bhudson (4,740 comments) says:

    Reid,

    I’m not going to chase around after your semantics. The fact that legislation was amended rather than removing the discrimination in status (i.e. the discrimination in status exists in every legislative reference where that specific Act has not need amended) means that the discrimination of legal rights remains.

    In any case…

    Amend the legislation.

    They will – they’ll amend the definition of marriage to include same sex unions

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  47. Hamnida (905 comments) says:

    Sofia – Thank you.

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  48. The Scorned (719 comments) says:

    “Let the hate flow through you…..” ^

    The Emperor
    …Star Wars…

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  49. Manolo (13,775 comments) says:

    DPF’s fixation with the topic continues. Will it ever stop?

    [DPF: Not fixated. There is a vote on Wednesday, and it is no surprise that I will be posting on this topic up until then, as I hope it might help persuade some MPs to vote for the bill]

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  50. bhudson (4,740 comments) says:

    Manolo,

    Once it goes into Select Committee I expect. Until it nears the end of the period for hearing submissions…

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  51. Hamnida (905 comments) says:

    Human Rights are important as we aim towards becoming a more civilised society.

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  52. wat dabney (3,761 comments) says:

    DPF’s fixation with the topic continues. Will it ever stop?

    Civil rights, you mean?

    Individial liberty is the defining issue for the right, so I doubt it’s going to stop any time soon.

    Perhaps you’d be happier on the Labour/Green party blogs? You get to act as a mob and censor, ban and coerce until you cum.

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  53. bhudson (4,740 comments) says:

    Edit for above: should have been “where that specific Act has not been amended”

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  54. Reid (16,467 comments) says:

    Not “We are civilly united” – fucking weird and different

    But I can’t call my self Maori. Does that mean I’m discriminated against? Of course not. And if I alleged I felt discriminated against, what pray tell would the rest of society tell me to do? Get over it, is what they’d say. So how come this issue is different.

    I’m not going to chase around after your semantics.

    But that’s my point bhudson. That your entire discrimination allegation rests entirely on semantics. And isn’t that weird. In that it’s not material discrimination, it’s semantic discrimination. Have you ever heard of anything quite so ridiculous? Yet that’s what this is, when you boil it down.

    And when you recognise that as a fact, which it is, then surely any thinking person should pause to think: hang on, why the fuck are gay activists getting so worked up about what is in essence, a word? And the answer is social engineering bhudson, as I laid out in my 1:05. And uninformed people can call it a conspiracy “theory” if they like but that’s only because those people don’t know how social engineering works. And those uninformed people might like to ask themselves, if it is only a word, which we’ve established that’s precisely what it is, that and nothing more, then as I said, why o why are global gay activists organising this global movement, if not for social engineering? If you disagree, then pray give a better explanation for all this global effort that’s going into this, at the present time. And don’t tell me “because it’s discriminatory” because as just explained, it’s a word. A single word.

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  55. bringbackdemocracy (427 comments) says:

    When they brought in civil unions, the promoters said that if we brought it in, then marriage would be preserved as a relationship between a man and a woman.
    We need a referendum on this issue. The people of New Zealand should have a say on such an important issue.

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  56. wat dabney (3,761 comments) says:

    We need a refferendum on this issue. The people of New Zealand should have a say on such an important issue.

    Because mob rule trumps individual rights?

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  57. Reid (16,467 comments) says:

    Because mob rule trumps individual rights?

    It’s a word wat. It’s not discrimination. If you think it is, then be the first to logically contradict the arguments above that say it’s not. So far, no-one has.

    When they brought in civil unions, the promoters said that if we brought it in, then marriage would be preserved as a relationship between a man and a woman.

    If you recall, Hulun at the time tried to make it marriage but that was a bridge too far, at that time. It’s wedge politics, just like everything in the gay/feminist agenda. They’ll never stop. It’s just like Maori politics. They’ll never stop, either.

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  58. Chuck Bird (4,884 comments) says:

    “What makes you think the majority wouldn’t vote for gay marriage? Two separate polls show otherwise.”

    The wording can make a big difference. If there was a referendum the wording would be clear and unambiguous if the bill passe the final reading.

    Do you support that marriage means the union of 2 people, regardless of their sex, sexual orientation, or gender identity contained in the Marriage (Definition of Marriage) Amendment Act 2014? in the affirmative

    The voting would be optional like any other vote, national or local. If the referendum occurred at the same time as a general election it would have the added benefit of encouraging more voter participation. Voter apathy is understandable when the two main parties made a deal on the smacking issue and treat the majority of voters with arrogant contempt. Of course i realise self selecting samples do not carry much weight as we seen with one of the pollsters before the last election.

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  59. bhudson (4,740 comments) says:

    In that it’s not material discrimination, it’s semantic discrimination.

    Reid, the discrimination is material – same sex couples do not have the legal right of the status of marriage.

    I gave you an example where the absence of that right had very real and material difference in property rights for same sex couples. While that particular instance was addressed through an amendment to the specific Act, the discrimination vis-a-vis the status of marriage exists everywhere other than where it has been specifically amended.

    Not that it will matter as the real, and potential, material discrimination will be removed when the definition of marriage is amended.

    [Incidentally, it is far less efficient and more fraught with risk to amend multiple pieces of legislation individually, where the effect of each amendment can be made with a single amendment within a single Act - as is the case with same sex marriage.]

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  60. Chuck Bird (4,884 comments) says:

    BTW, chiz would you be happy to accept the results of a binding referendum and if not why not if you think you have majority support?

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  61. bhudson (4,740 comments) says:

    @Chuck,

    Your wording is not unambiguous. It can be interpreted as “what is the status of marriage as it exists today” as opposed to testing support to amend the definition of marriage to include same sex couples.

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  62. chiz (1,144 comments) says:

    Two separate polls in the last year show majority support for same-sex marriage.

    I’m sceptical of binding referendums if the voting is optional because they typically won’t give representative results due to their self-selecting nature. The two sides in the debate usually don’t share equal amounts of passion about the subject and don’t vote with equal likelihood.

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  63. wat dabney (3,761 comments) says:

    It’s not discrimination.

    Apart from gays not being able to marry, you mean?

    You have been flogging your “explain to me what rights they don’t have” argument for weeks now. You seem to imagine it is a clever, lawyerly position. It’s not. It was a rubbish strawman then and it’s a rubbish strawman now. A child of five can point out the flaw in your “argument.” Time to give it a decent funeral my friend.

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  64. Reid (16,467 comments) says:

    Reid, the discrimination is material – same sex couples do not have the legal right of the status of marriage.

    No hang on bhudson. A legal right grants something material to a group. By amending wording in particular legislation to recognise civil unions as well as marriage, grants that right to that group. Therefore there is no discrimination. Given that all relevant law apart from the adoption law does that, there is no discrimination. Period.

    The “status of marriage” is not per se a legal right, it’s a semantic vehicle to grant legal rights, and straight couples have that and gay couples have the “status of civil union.” It’s a semantic vehicle, nothing more.

    You have been flogging your “explain to me what rights they don’t have” argument for weeks now… A child of five can point out the flaw in your “argument.”

    So go ahead then wat. Point out the flaw. Because you haven’t yet. And no-one else has, either.

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  65. Fletch (6,390 comments) says:

    I said, I think gay and straight people should have equal rights. So by that I mean, gay and straight people can have a civil union or get married. My reason – I want to live in a society where people have equal rights.

    Well, why should gay people have marrying rights, and not those who want to marry multiple partners, for instance?
    Aren’t they being discriminated against, too?

    In reality, you (and other pro- gay-marriage supporters) have no criteria with which to administer “equal rights” other than your own arbitrary idea of who should and shouldn’t get married. “Equal rights” is a non argument unless everyone can claim those rights equally, including those who want to marry multiple partners, relatives, minors, etc.

    As it is, even if gay-marriage laws are passed, there are some who STILL will not have “equal rights” and are being discriminated against.

    So, the equal rights argument falls flat.

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  66. bhudson (4,740 comments) says:

    The “status of marriage” is not per se a legal right

    No Reid, it (marriage) is a definition that confers legal rights within legislation – the Marriage Act and others.

    Given that all relevant law apart from the adoption law does that, there is no discrimination

    Have you checked them all Reid?

    In any case, for so long as same sex unions are not included within marriage, the discrimination in status remains. How material it is at any given point in time depends on how other legislation is drafted, any amendments which have (or have not) been made to it, and how any future legislation might be drafted.

    The status of marriage, Reid, is a very real mechanism for conferring legal rights. I have given you one example – one, I suggest, that you had not considered previously. You are aware of another. There are many, many pieces of legislation you can trawl through to determine if there are more still.

    While you’re at it you will have to check all forms of regulation too – if any of those confer rights based on the definition of marriage then they are discriminating also.

    It may keep you busy for a while, but I don’t think they’ll be holding up progress of the Bill while you’re researching

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  67. BlairM (2,339 comments) says:

    Well all I can say is thank God I am not a conservative. The idea that government should be “encouraging” moral behaviour disgusts me.

    That is why I oppose the government redefining marriage by issuing marriage certificates to gay couples.

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  68. bhudson (4,740 comments) says:

    Well, why should gay people have marrying rights, and not those who want to marry multiple partners, for instance?
    Aren’t they being discriminated against, too?

    Fletch, those advocating for, and those supporting, the inclusion of same sex couples within the definition of marriage are not advocating for other changes. They have absolutely zero responsibility to comment or justify any other conditions or restrictions on marriage.

    If you are keen on the ability to marry multiple partners then I suggest you start lobbying for it.

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  69. wat dabney (3,761 comments) says:

    Reid,

    The flaw, or course, is that gays are currently not allowed to marry.

    Hence your “show me the discrimination” argument is perhaps the feeblest one ever to seriously be put forward in this blog on any issue.

    Fletch,

    In reality, you (and other pro- gay-marriage supporters) have no criteria with which to administer “equal rights” other than your own arbitrary idea of who should and shouldn’t get married.

    Where have you been for the last few weeks?

    It has been stated on multiple ocassions that the state should have nothing to do with marriage. People can have whatever private marriage ceremonies they wish and invoke the blessings of the Tooth Fairy or whatever. They can marry one person or a hundred.

    But if the state does get involved it must not discriminate by selecting which ones are valid and which are not.

    And did you seriously wish to argue that this logically leads to marrying children? I mean, seriously?

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  70. Chuck Bird (4,884 comments) says:

    @bhudson the wording comes right from the bill that should be clear to anyone. I have run it past a lawyer with a good knowledge of constitutional law. The public votes just like the MPs. A yes vote and it is law and a no vote and it is rejected.

    @chiz “I’m sceptical of binding referendums if the voting is optional because they typically won’t give representative results due to their self-selecting nature.”

    We have self selecting binding referendum every three years. We had a self selecting binding referendum on the voting system. Should those result not be considered valid as some people do not have the same passion?

    I have much more confidence of a democratic result based on everyone who is eligible and chooses to exercise their democratic right to a secret vote than legislation determined by opinion polls.

    If this bill and the one on euthanasia if drawn get passed by conscience votes I can see the Conservative Party and NZF in the next Parliament.

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  71. iMP (2,385 comments) says:

    …”gays and straights should have the same rights.” Well then
    Vegans and pizza-lovers should have the same rights.

    They are HUMAN rights, not sexuality-based rights (or whether you like pizza). Gays can marry like anyone else, just not to people of the same sex. It’s no more discriminatory than heteros being denied their “rights” to marry people of the same sex, or a 1st cousin.

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  72. wat dabney (3,761 comments) says:

    Gays can marry like anyone else, just not to people of the same sex

    And black people can get married, just not to white people.

    No discrimination there, surely.

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  73. bhudson (4,740 comments) says:

    I have run it past a lawyer with a good knowledge of constitutional law.

    Chuck, perhaps you might run it past them again. Or have them declare their personal position.

    Irrespective of whether or not the words are lifted out of the Bill, the wording as it stands risks the result being deemed contaminated by an unknown number of respondents voting on the basis of the actual definition of marriage as it exists today, as opposed to voting on their acceptance of an amendment of include same sex couples within the definition of marriage.

    And I’m sure you wouldn’t want any possible misinterpretation to lead to that sort of voting, would you?

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  74. MH (757 comments) says:

    Where do they want to get gayried? In a Gay church, so they will still be labelled different…..what is the point? Degrees of matrimony will still exist,as in …oh they got gayried in that Church,you know the one,where all the gays priests are….. Our gay Catholic Attorney-General Finlayson will be tormented again.

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  75. bhudson (4,740 comments) says:

    Degrees of matrimony will still exist

    Not in law MH

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  76. Pauleastbay (5,035 comments) says:

    Chuck me old mate, all the homosexual population has to do is tell Winston they will vote en masse for him and he’s theirs – the mans a whore, Colin Craig is just stupid, so your thesis is rooted.

    The majority of NZers don’t give a fuck about this subject, they just want to be able to pay their bills, people do not care, I don’t particuarly either, I just loathe the hypocrisy of the so called christians and enjoy teasing them, sadly not one of them has a remotely decent argument or even a modecum of humour so its a bit like shooting fish in a barrel.

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  77. XavierG (34 comments) says:

    Andrei said:

    “When marriage breaks down so will society within a generation or two.

    It leads to social catastrophe”

    Well, given our already declining marriage rates, and skyrocketing divorce rates among heterosexuals, wouldn’t you agree that the the real problem with marriage is that, to put it bluntly, straight people absolutely suck at it? Marriage is breaking down, and it’s not because gay people want to get married. It’s breaking down because straight people have ruined the institution of marriage for themselves? Shouldn’t you be directing your holier than thou attitude and your “SKY IS FALLING!!!” hysteria at your straight mates, telling them not to fuck around on their spouses, or beat their wives, or get on and have children because we all know marriage exists for producing spawn? Your priorities are fucked, mate.

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  78. Chuck Bird (4,884 comments) says:

    @bhudson I heard the same story with the anti smacking law.

    In any case the wording is a side issue. If the Select Committee accepted that it go to a referendum I am sure they could choose appropriate wording that the vast majority would understand and that is good enough. There are still some people who cannot fill in their voting papers correctly.

    Would you accept the results of a referendum knowing is the claims by your lot are correct the opposition would cease?

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  79. Reid (16,467 comments) says:

    Have you checked them all Reid?

    No bhudson but normally if someone alleges discrimination it’s customary for them to point to it, not rely on others to prove there isn’t any.

    And so far none has been found. Your property right example is not discrimination because as I explained, the amendment to grant that right to people in a civil union obviates that discrepancy, as the same amendment does to all other examples in any other legislation.

    Like I said, the only discrimination that any proponent has pointed to – the only discrimination – is the right to adopt. And like I said, if that’s the case, then let’s have a gay adoption debate. It’s simply doublespeak to pretend that if that’s the discrimination at the heart of the allegation – which it is – then let’s have a gay marriage debate. That simply doesn’t compute bhudson. Does it.

    The flaw, or course, is that gays are currently not allowed to marry.

    But wat, like I keep saying and I’m getting sick of repeating myself because it’s not rocket science, that’s a semantic argument and therefore meaningless in the real world because in the real world discrimination is something material, not merely semantic. This is like saying I’m discriminated against because I’m not allowed to say I’m in a civil union or that I’m discriminated against because I’m not allowed to call myself Maori. I’m not allowed to do the former because I haven’t gone through the legal ceremony and I’m not allowed to do the latter because I don’t have a drop of Maori blood in me. I hope you can see how ridiculous both allegations would be were I to make them and I hope you can see this is exactly precisely what you and other proponents are trying to say, in your allegations.

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  80. BlairM (2,339 comments) says:

    It’s so stupid. There are countries on this planet where going up the Khyber with another man will get you a spell in jail and/or your head chopped off. And Western homosexuals are worried about whether a bunch of bureaucrats can give them a bit of paper with a special word on it? Forgive me if I don’t give a flying fuck.

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  81. XavierG (34 comments) says:

    BlairM: So we should just be happy with what we’ve got because, hey, at least we’re not going to get stoned to death, right?

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  82. Viking2 (11,471 comments) says:

    Talking about happy families there is a new family photo out today of the family no.1. in London.

    http://screencast.com/t/RiEUfptxa7uO

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  83. BlairM (2,339 comments) says:

    Actually Xavier, yes you should.

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  84. bhudson (4,740 comments) says:

    And so far none has been found.

    No so Reid, but you continue to weave around your semantics of what constitutes discrimination and when it can and cannot be counted.

    I am not trying to convince you to change you position. Even if I could, I am not remotely interested in doing so. That doesn’t mean I have accept the persistence or weak or specious argument to the counter position – and I won’t. You placed your challenge re: material discrimination and I answered it. As far as I am concerned I met your challenge and proved you to be incorrect.

    You can continue to duck and weave on it, secure in your mind that you are correct. Those that choose to can agree with you. Those that do not may well agree with me that your argument was countered. I somehow doubt that it will have changed any positions (as I doubt that any of the points across the various related threads the past few weeks and months will have.)

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  85. XavierG (34 comments) says:

    Perhaps we should all just change our names to Uncle Tom, just to make it a little clearer about what you’re saying.

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  86. my 2 cents (1,091 comments) says:

    As I posted before, the core issue isn’t babies or sex but gender and there isn’t a liberal or conservative position on same gender marriage as DPF would have us believe. :-)

    Marriage is made between a man and a woman, because that is what a marriage is, A man and a woman bringing their two lives together and sharing it to the exclusion to all others. If they don’t have children then the marriage is incomplete in that sense, of not having children, but they still have a marriage. If they do it in relationship to/with their God(s) then it is a relationship with Him/her as well and honouring Him/her whomever they be.

    Anything else however well intentioned, is a parody or worse still a deliberate distortion of marriage to dilute the brand and nullify it’s exclusiveness and purpose for children and the renergising of society generationaly.
    Two separate genders make a marriage, In short, same gender marriage is an oxymoron.

    Now the overarching purpose of marriage is for a safe environment to bring forth children and nuture and grow them by example and education into men and women in their own right and ultimately fathers and mothers.
    For this to properly occur one needs a man and a woman, not a man & man or woman & woman.

    Because they are different from each other, the man brings all the masculine things seen and unseen to the environment the children are brought up in and the woman brings all that she as a woman in her psychology/emotions and femininity which are different from the man. That way the children have a balence and an anchoring of their own sexuality and gender outworking.

    So it has been for generations and in all societies, homosexuality though present has not been treated as the norm and a replacement for heterosexual marriage because it isn’t.
    A homosexual man cannot show and bring forth all that a heterosexual man does to his sons and daughters towards the opposite gender and the same applies for a homosexual woman, that a heterosexual woman does for her children.

    A man and a woman are different in their dynamic than two of the same gender.
    Even if one allows for the good graces of two very well intentioned people of the same gender.
    They just don’t cut the mustard and never will, they weren’t designed to do so, they are in fact acting against their design or biology.

    This is so basic I really don’t understand why people don’t get this instead of getting hung up on sex and human rights, it’s got nothing to do with that but the very best environment for children to be brought forth and led into society as fully functioning beings as their parents were.

    Also basic is that hundreds of scientists worldwide have been trying for longer than I’ve been alive, to find “proof” homosexuality is hardwired in the genes, they have failed except those who crooked the books or methodology.
    Sadly the biology is against you and is glaring right in your faces every morning when you take a pee!
    It shows what the norm is, though so many here close their eyes to this, a man is made /designed for a woman and visa versa.
    There is no getting round that.

    At http://www.narth.org there are a number of studies on this and some background to the battle about the suborning of the American Psychiatric Association (APA) in the 70-80′s which was a milestone for the homosexual agender allowing them to circumvent what was the position that I have stated above.

    Ok I’ve got my flamesuit on so lets have reasoned debate on the points.

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  87. Manolo (13,775 comments) says:

    Good on you, bhudson. From your well reasoned comments I can only surmise you are a fellow libertarian cleverly disguised as Labour lite stalwart.

    It’s time you ditch the timid appeasers, Key worshippers and compromisers and join the forces of liberty. :D

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  88. Reid (16,467 comments) says:

    No so Reid, but you continue to weave around your semantics of what constitutes discrimination and when it can and cannot be counted.

    Ok bhudson so where is it? You accuse me of weaving around? Crikey.

    my2cents, that point has already been covered. See my 1:05 and Shunda’s post slightly before that. Debate’s moved on, but keeps circling (because the proponents have been outmanouvered and they don’t know where to go…)

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  89. bhudson (4,740 comments) says:

    @Chuck,

    1. I am not in any position to accept such a referendum (only a position to cast a single vote)
    2. Given the example words you laid out, your strong belief that they were unambiguous, your check of them with a lawyer, and my reading of them showing what I believe to be a gaping hole, I am not at all confident that a referendum could be adequately worded to satisfy everybody and give a robust result
    3. I am not confident that enough people are interested to vote on a referendum on the subject
    4. The matter is in front of the House already and that is sufficient – it is where any such matter ends up anyway. A referendum in this instance would only create a ‘double-handling’ within the House
    5. The Select Committee process offer sufficient opportunity for both those in favour and those opposed to have their views heard
    6. I would expect MPs to consult with their electorates (as Electorate MPs or the electorate assigned to cover as a List MP). It is in their best interests to do so, given there is an election probably only a year or so out from when this Bill might be expected to have its final reading (if it makes it that far) [Admittedly I guess it could all happen a lot sooner, but as a Private Member's Bill I imagine the Committee of the House stage to take quite some time.]

    So Ican’t really help you on the substance of our question – you’ll have to seek answers from the MPs on that

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  90. XavierG (34 comments) says:

    My 2 Cents, by definition you can’t have a reasoned debate if you’re citing NARTH: an organisation that has been debunked by every real psychological, psychiatric and medical association, both in the United States and over the world.

    For what it’s worth. No biologist is actually advocating that homosexuality is hardwired in the genes, because every biologist understands that no behaviour is ‘hardwired’ in the genes.

    Even if we all did decide to be gay or straight (which I certainly didn’t, by the way. The very thought of having sex with any woman makes me shudder and I’ve never chosen to be gay – I just chose to accept it rather than live my life miserably and at the behest of someone else’s moral expectations) it’s actually entirely irrelevant. People choose their religious beliefs, but we certainly don’t discriminate about who can get married based on their religious affiliation. People don’t choose their political beliefs, but we don’t discriminate about who can get married based on who they vote for. If sexual orientation were a strict choice, there would STILL be no reason to prevent the extension of marriage rights to gay people, because in a secular state, where marriage is legally a civil institution, there is no justification for withholding those rights. You don’t have to like it. You just have to live with it.

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  91. bhudson (4,740 comments) says:

    Manolo,

    I am 100% certain that I am with the right party.

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  92. wat dabney (3,761 comments) says:

    m2c,

    Marriage is made between a man and a woman, because that is what a marriage is

    Except all those cultures where a man can have multiple wives, you mean? Because “that is what marriage is” as well, clearly.

    And your post went downhill from there I’m afraid.

    People might choose to get married for any number of reasons besides having children. You may choose to label their marriages “parodies”, but frankly that says more about you than it does about them. And what is says about you is deeply unpleasant.

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  93. XavierG (34 comments) says:

    *People do choose their political beliefs

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  94. Monique Watson (1,062 comments) says:

    @M2C
    Say someone in their marriage was a “little bit gay”. Does that mean they’d be slightly more shit in their parenting compared to someone who was completely straight, man or woman? Where does the line get drawn?

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  95. chiz (1,144 comments) says:

    chuck:I have much more confidence of a democratic result based on everyone who is eligible and chooses to exercise their democratic right to a secret vote than legislation determined by opinion polls.

    As an example, consider the debate over genetic engineering. When the Royal Commission was set up the greens organised a write in campaign, and as a result almost all of the letters that were received were in opposition to genetic engineering. The greens touted this as ‘proof’ that most people were opposed to genetic engineering and by a large margin. Professionally done polls at the time showed a different picture, however. One poll showed that most people didn’t give a stuff about the issue, and, on a list of issues that were important when it came to the election it ranked near last. It turns out that you had a small number of people who were very passionately opposed to genetic engineering, who dominated the writein, and a much larger number of people who weren’t very passionate, thereby skewing the results.

    This is the concern that I have over referendums. As far as I can see there are quite a few people, dominated by the religious, who are opposed and quite passionate about this, and a larger number of people who aren’t opposed but who also probably aren’t that passionate about, see it as right and even, perhaps, inevitable, but probably won’t vote in anywhere near the same extant.

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  96. chiz (1,144 comments) says:

    my 2 cents:Also basic is that hundreds of scientists worldwide have been trying for longer than I’ve been alive, to find “proof” homosexuality is hardwired in the genes, they have failed

    They have succeeded in finding evidence that there is a biological component to sexual orientation, and that there is some genetics involved. They may not have found the ultimate cause yet, but, by comparison, they haven’t found the cause for left-handedness yes either despite all the research.

    except those who crooked the books or methodology.

    So, basically any evidence that you personally don’t like was due to cooking the books? Meanwhile, it is a demonstrable fact that NARTH aren’t reliable.

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  97. wat dabney (3,761 comments) says:

    have much more confidence of a democratic result based on everyone who is eligible and chooses to exercise their democratic right to a secret vote than legislation determined by opinion polls.

    Unless you are advocating mob rule this argument is simply confused.

    We favour democracy only because it is the system most likely to deliver human rights. The objective at all times is human rights rather than simply “a democratic result.”

    Slavery, for example, is perfectly compatible with democracy. Indeed, it was so in the United States.

    A binding referendum is the very last thing we want, on all but the most trivial issues.

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  98. David Garrett (7,281 comments) says:

    This is a bit like Shakespeare’s plays…every possible thing that can be said about them has been said already…long ago…

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  99. Reid (16,467 comments) says:

    A binding referendum is the very last thing we want, on all but the most trivial issues.

    Surprisingly wat I concur with you over this, if only because the real agenda behind gay marriage (see my 1:05) is too complicated to detail for the average voter amoeba unless we did a Shortland Street special with Kylie Minogue as the special guest star and given Kylie’s record on gay rights, I don’t think that would ever happen.

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  100. boredboy (250 comments) says:

    “The real agenda behind gay marriage.”

    I don’t know whether to laugh or cry.

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  101. krazykiwi (9,186 comments) says:

    I like to hear someone who supports a changed definition of marriage put up a compelling case as to why this change shouldn’t allow polygamy, polyandry, and marriage to animals. Surely blocking these is ‘discriminatory’, as is the current practice of preveniting me marrying my sister, or mother?

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  102. Andrei (2,656 comments) says:

    There is one more thing to say about it David Garret.

    That this is even raised as a possibility let alone taken as a serious proposition is a sign that we are living in a decayed culture with a political leadership below mediocre and where political discourse make Oprah Winfrey and Jerry Springer is positively intellectual in comparison.

    It is in short bonkers!

    And it shows how pitiful Western Political Leadership in the early 21st century is. Little men whose vision extends only one election cycle, way out of their depth when it comes to dealing with the real life, real world problems we are facing searching for gushing media coverage to hide their hopeless inadequacies.

    Little men and wimmin our leaders really are. People about with as much substance of a jellyfish.

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  103. Fletch (6,390 comments) says:

    kk, exactly.

    The proponents of same-sex marriage have no solid base on which to stake their case – it is illusory.
    For them, it basically comes down to – people should be allowed to do what they want.
    Why? Based on what?

    They have no moral or logical foundation.
    Logically, you can see how men and women are complimentary, both sexually and emotionally. You only have to look at the sexual organs of both. A man and a man, or a woman and a woman can’t have sexual intercourse – it’s a fact.
    The union of male and female is the basis of marriage, and together with their offspring, the basis of the family unit.

    Simple.

    Even 50 years ago, the idea of same sex marriage would have been as funny as Milton Berle in a dress; people would have found it preposterous, and silly, and laughed.

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  104. XavierG (34 comments) says:

    Andrei, why the need for the “wimmin” comment? All that does is simply invalidate anything reasonable you may have said, and relegate you into the “angry/bitter misogynist” category. Choose your words more wisely if you want to be taken seriously.

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  105. Pauleastbay (5,035 comments) says:

    KK

    What is wrong with polygamy? If you can afford it and not asking me to pay and would want more than one partner and no one was getting hurt in the relationships where’s the problem?

    If a woman wanted more than one husbands see above.

    All marriages except those which are enforced and arranged depend on consent, I love my dogs but I think I would have trouble getting consent from them.

    If you want to marry your sister feel free.

    It affects me in the same way as ” if a tree falls in the forest and I’m not there does it make a sound?”

    Which brings to another point for all you ‘marriage is the be all and end all.’

    Please tell me are those arranged marriages ,where a 6 year old is bethrothed to a 25 year, are these marriages legitimate?

    because if you follow the logic of the the religous sad sacks here they have to be even though there is no consent and are really nothing more than the sale of a child.

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  106. Reid (16,467 comments) says:

    I don’t know whether to laugh or cry.

    So given we’ve established it’s not about discrimination boredboy, what pray tell do you think it is about?

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  107. krazykiwi (9,186 comments) says:

    PEB –

    What is wrong with polygamy?

    Good question. So why aren’t you campaigning for legitimised polygamy and polyandry as part of the proposal to change the definition of marriage? Apologies if you have been consistently campaigning on this. I must have missed it.

    So much of the gay case (or rather the liberal case advanced on behalf of mostly disinterested gays) is founded on ending so-called ‘discrimination’. Why is discrimination against polygamists and polyandrists still acceptable?

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  108. Pauleastbay (5,035 comments) says:

    KK

    I’m not campaigning for anything, as I stated above, I don’t really care, I just loathe the hypocrisy of the some of the religious here.

    But I’d be interested to hear comment regarding arranged marriages . Most of the anti gay marriage speak here ( cunningly disguised as anti homo speak) burbles on regards marriage for the propagation of the species and is between one man and one woman. But how can an arranged marriage be legitimate? And if they are, how would they differ between a same sex marriage.

    The one huge difference I see is a same sex marraige would be a consentual union rather than the sale of a human even though the sexes would match your ideal

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  109. bhudson (4,740 comments) says:

    Why is discrimination against polygamists and polyandrists still acceptable?

    kk, that would be for the polygamists and polyandrists to campaign against, not the proponents or supporters of same sex marriage. (Unless they also support polygamy/polyandry, which the silence indicates they don’t)

    Those campaigning for same sex marriage are under absolutely no obligation to justify elements of marriage which they are not campaigning to change.

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  110. Johnboy (16,554 comments) says:

    If I wasn’t so attached to my sheep I would propose marriage to a wonderful man like you Pauleastbay! :)

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  111. krazykiwi (9,186 comments) says:

    bhudson- So many of the proponents of changing the definition of marriage
    (a) aren’t gay themselves
    (b) promote that the issue is one of discrimination against gays
    (c) don’t seem to want to be consistent and support the cause of polygamisys and polyandrists

    I’m just curious to understand why the inconsistency. That’s all.

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  112. nasska (11,510 comments) says:

    krazykiwi

    How many mothers in law do you reckon you could handle? :)

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  113. bhudson (4,740 comments) says:

    kk,

    No inconsistency at all. There is absolutely no reason at all why those proposing marriage be redefined to include same sex unions would have any view whatsoever on polygamy. They are not supporting a change in that area.

    I do not know if many, or any, of the proponents of same sex marriage are not gay themselves. Definitely there are non gays among the supporters [the distinction being one of driving the change and the other supportive, but not actively leading a campaign.]

    Clearly the present situation discriminates against same sex couples – they are not permitted to be married and their union does not afford the same status in law as marriage.

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  114. Pauleastbay (5,035 comments) says:

    KK

    Arranaged marriages? hello- any reply or just an inconvenient question?

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  115. Johnboy (16,554 comments) says:

    It’s a bit inconvenient at the moment what with lambing coming up but If you want to arrange it I will consider it big boy! :)

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  116. MH (757 comments) says:

    and finally all the best songs point to mixed gender marriages being the only lawful way,and that is why we have gathered hair today,bringing in the sheaves.

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  117. vejay (1 comment) says:

    @my 2 cents you said:
    “A man and a woman are different in their dynamic than two of the same gender.”

    Are you sure? I wonder how you know? Or are you just assuming that it must be so?

    I’ve been married to a man and civilly united to a woman and, in my experience, a relationship is a relationship is a relationship. The similarities are more than the differences. Yes, other people treat the relationships differently, but inside the relationship, the dynamic is much the same. It’s another person, and you get along with them as best you can.

    VJ

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  118. Mark (1,488 comments) says:

    Whether a homosexual couple marry or not has absolutely no impact on me or anyone else. I do not support homosexual adoption as adoption is about the rights of children not about gay rights. But marriage has no impact on anyone else. I struggle to see what the argument is about.

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  119. Chuck Bird (4,884 comments) says:

    Mark, I will do my best to explain how I think it impacts on others. For a start this affects adoption. I know that single homosexuals can adopt now but this still affects adoption more. The more important issue for is the State further put is its stamp of approval on the homosexual lifestyle along with what they are taught in school YOU’RE TEACHING MY CHILD WHAT?

    I do not accept that homosexuality is hardwired or determined in the womb and I beleive some of those pushing this accept that bisexuality may be a choice.

    I hope you check the link and understand my point of view even if you do not agree with it.

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  120. Ryan Sproull (7,153 comments) says:

    How do you choose to whom you’re attracted? Attraction is something that happens to you, not something you do. I could no more choose to be sexually attracted to another man than I could choose to be sexually attracted to a woman I find unattractive.

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  121. Chuck Bird (4,884 comments) says:

    “I could no more choose to be sexually attracted to another man than I could choose to be sexually attracted to a woman I find unattractive.”

    Maybe you should direct your question to some of the victims of James Parker. I read on feels guilty about getting him in trouble.

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  122. Ryan Sproull (7,153 comments) says:

    Maybe you should direct your question to some of the victims of James Parker. I read on feels guilty about getting him in trouble.

    Not sure what the relevance is…

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  123. Scott (1,800 comments) says:

    Very interesting post DPF. I have probably missed the bus on this but I tend to worship God and fellowship with other people on Sundays rather than spend time in cyberspace on the Internet.

    As you yourself say, you are not a Conservative. I would argue that Ted Olson is not being Conservative on this issue at all. And David Cameron says that he is a Conservative, but like many others seems to govern like a liberal.

    A Conservative believes in transcendent values. That is some things are right and some things are wrong and they transcend our individual preferences. Conservatives believe in the little platoon, those small clubs and organisations and church groups that make up community. They believe in variety. Conservatives believe in the permanence of things. Believing in long-standing tradition as opposed to the latest fads and latest politically correct thinking. Conservatives are wary of big government and sweeping changes.

    So when Ted Olson argues he argues more as a liberal. Liberals tend to like big principles such as “equality”. They want to use government to impose these principles. They are not particularly concerned about the outcomes but they do want change. They will sacrifice the permanent for some perceived utopian goal.

    Gay marriage is a perfect example of modern liberalism in action. Ted Olson casts aside any transcendent values. Cast aside religious objections. Wants to impose “equality”. Casts aside that marriage is an institution that has been throughout human history between a man and a woman. He seeks the government to impose equality and give the privilege of marriage to a group that has never had it before.

    So those are liberal arguments. Conservatives would look at the likely outcome of these changes. It cannot be foreseen but the institution of gay marriage is a radical act. So although the changes cannot be foreseen there will be many and they will be wide ranging. Maybe we will end up like ancient Greece where the elite of the day got married to a woman who had their children and on the side they had a male lover, a boy who was the true object of their affection.

    What can be predicted is that marriage may be fashionable amongst gays and Liberals but most of them won’t get married. Those people who are neither gay nor part of the liberal elite may still want to get married but marriage will be tarnished as a brand, as an ideal. We will be treated to the sight of two men getting married and kissing on the altar. That will be “marriage” for the new generation. Perhaps it will become something that only gays do?

    But I am not sure that Liberals really care. They generally don’t have much time for marriage anyway. Generally Liberals will live together for a long time and have serial monogamy. Maybe they will get married eventually and maybe they will have one or two designer children. But often not. It is amazing that the ones pushing for this are generally not married and often seemingly have no intention of getting married. The person who owns this blog is probably a good example of this.

    But the sacrifice of an institution that transcends government and has been around a lot longer than liberalism or gay rights is a profoundly radical and un-Conservative act.

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  124. Liberal Minded Kiwi (1,571 comments) says:

    I’ll put my hand up as this is simply hilarious. Fletch said the following (keeping in mind he is heavily religious)

    tagThe proponents of same-sex marriage have no solid base on which to stake their case – it is illusory.tag

    As illusory as believing in fairies and arks?

    tagThey have no moral or logical foundation.tag

    Logic isn’t something you’d associate with fundys like Fletch.

    tagLogically, you can see how men and women are complimentary, both sexually and emotionally. You only have to look at the sexual organs of both. A man and a man, or a woman and a woman can’t have sexual intercourse – it’s a fact.
    The union of male and female is the basis of marriage, and together with their offspring, the basis of the family unit.tag

    And this is equated to the marriage side of things? How do celebate couples fit into this? Is it all about sex with you lot?

    tagEven 50 years ago, the idea of same sex marriage would have been as funny as Milton Berle in a dress; people would have found it preposterous, and silly, and laughed.tag

    They also laughed about giving the women the vote, allowing blacks to go to white schools, interracial couples marrying and not throwing gay couples into prison. So, what’s your point?

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  125. Liberal Minded Kiwi (1,571 comments) says:

    Damn my html tags…

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