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They sneered at Bishop Gilbert’s suggestion that gay marriage would lead to unions between one man and two women. Well, now it’s happened

In Brazil, the unthinkable has come to pass. Why not?

By on Friday, 31 August 2012

David Cameron: incomprehensible enthusiasm for revolutionary change (PA)

David Cameron: incomprehensible enthusiasm for revolutionary change (PA)

You may remember that earlier this month, I wrote about “controversial” remarks made by Bishop Hugh Gilbert of Aberdeen, who, when asked a question about the Scottish government’s plans to introduce gay “marriage”, replied that “The truth is that a government can pass any legislation it likes. Why is it all right for a man to marry another man, but not all right for him to marry two women? If we really want equality, why does that equality not extend to nieces who genuinely, truly love their uncles?”

Not unexpectedly, his remarks provoked scornful rejoinders from supporters of gay unions (marriage or not). One of them, underneath my piece, protested that “There is no political movement to make [polygamous] marriage legal. All attempts to claim that [polygamous marriage] is equivalent to same-sex marriage have failed. The claim that same-sex marriage will lead to [polygamous] marriage has been made by anti-gay campaigners for years, and has – in 11 countries so far – always been shown to be mere malicious scaremongering.”

Well, we now have polygamous civil unions (and don’t tell me that that’s not “marriage”: it’s the first step towards it, and was always intended to be so). Three people have been allowed to enter into a civil union in the Brazilian state of Sao Paulo, the Telegraph reported earlier this week. Claudia do Nascimento Domingues, a public notary, granted the request for a civil union of one man and two women, saying there is nothing in law that prevents such an arrangement. The union was estabished formally three months ago but only became public this week.

“We are only recognising what has always existed. We are not inventing anything,” said Ms Domingues. “For better or worse, it doesn’t matter, but what we considered a family before isn’t necessarily what we would consider a family today.”

You can say that again. Dr Patricia Morgan, the most important sociologist specialising in family policy today, told Simon Caldwell on this site’s homepage that she was not surprised by the ruling, and pointed out that similar attempts have been made in the Netherlands. She said that the proliferation of a range of relationships that will be legally considered equalvalent to marriage was inevitable once the institution had been redefined. And surely she is right: does anybody (anybody, that is, who isn’t trying for their own ends to underplay the disruptively revolutionary nature of what is now going on) seriously contest that this is one of the most inevitable slippery slopes we have seen for years?

“In the Netherlands,” continues Dr Morgan, “to be equal they opened up civil partnerships to heterosexuals as well as to gays but then found that there were these three-in-a-bed relationships that were seeking legal recognition; I think it is all part of the cause. Once you break away from one man and one woman, what do you expect? Once you allow two men [to marry], where are your boundaries?” Precisely: you haven’t just effected a minor readjustment: you have torn down the walls protecting the institution itself: anything goes. “People say this won’t happen,” she continues, “but where does it stop? You are going to get polygamy from Muslims, aren’t you? People are simply shutting their eyes if they think that this is not going to happen.”

Dr Morgan (who I have written about before in this column) is one of the few sensible sociologists around, and she is a specialist on the family, and particularly on the dire consequences for children of families which are not based on two married parents (of opposite sex): her classic study Marriage-Lite: The Rise of Cohabitation and its Consequences is available from Civitas as a free download.

And she has surely put her finger on the whole point. Marriage is not simply there for the good of those involved. “Part of the problem,” she says, “is the modern view of marriage as a [private relationship] based on subjective definitions of ‘love’. This is to the exclusion of its wider purpose as a public contract serving the common good by supporting the procreation and education of future generations.”

Precisely. Do you remember Theresa May’s declaration of support for “gay marriage” (the same slushy declaration that we hear on all sides): “I believe if two people care for each other, if they love each other, if they want to commit to each other and spend the rest of their lives together then they should be able to get married and that marriage should be for everyone.” And what if three people care for each other? Why not? Marriage should be for everyone. Back to Bishop Gilbert: “The truth is that a government can pass any legislation it likes. Why is it all right for a man to marry another man, but not all right for him to marry two women?”

As I write, the petition for the government to respect the immemorial understanding of marriage as being between one man and one woman (sign it now, if you haven’t already) has reached the stratospheric level of 597, 226 signatures. Oh, and for those who rejoin that that’s only a tiny proportion of the population as a whole, the reply is, of course, that most people don’t sign petitions. The point is that this is one of the highest figures ever (it may be the highest) for an online petition: and the equivalent pro gay-marriage petition (“I support the right of two people in love to get married, regardless of gender. It’s only fair”) has after some months edged up to a comparatively paltry 62, 695, and I wouldn’t be surprised if it doesn’t manage very much more: it certainly won’t get anywhere near half a million.

So the support in the population at large for marriage as traditionally understood is massive and preponderant. But will that be reflected in a falling away of Cameron’s incomprehensible enthusiasm for this revolutionary change? We shall see; but I have a nasty feeling about all this.

  • GulliverUK

    It isn’t legal for more than two people to be in a marriage in the UK, and unless you’ve seen government proposals for this, then it’s just speculation on your part.  There was an attempt to allow polygamy in the UK in 2000 with a case to be taken to the ECHR.  As we don’t have polygamy, I presume that failed, although I understand the tax system does, in some way, recognise polygamy – but who actually knows how or to what extent.  There are already polygamous marriages in the UK, just not recognised as such, this is mainly in the Muslim community, and the lack of legal recognition leads to all sorts of issues for women who may find their husbands taking 2nd and 3rd wives without their consent, and those subsequent wives may then also not have any inheritance rights.

    Polygamy was allowed in the Bible (Genesis 29:17-28; II Samuel 3:2-5) and
    divorce is outlawed in the Bible (Deuteronomy 22:19; Mark 10:9).   Since divorce rates are now topping 50% and climbing, and only half the number of people are getting married since the peak in the early 70s, I’d say your priorities lie elsewhere, rather than some hypothetical situation of polygamy in the UK.  If you believe it is not good for people to be alone then you should be encouraging the government to open-up Civil Partnerships to heterosexual couples, to see if that will encourage more couples to commit to faithful loving committed legally-protected relationships. 

    Most of the population support equal marriage rights, in poll after poll after poll, and these polls are being replicated around the planet, in New Zealand, Australia, even Taiwan and Venezuela are planning equal marriage rights – it’s a civil rights issue, everybody acknowledges that.  The polls always show a majority in support of equal marriage.  I haven’t seen any polls even ask about polygamy, but no doubt papers will be prepping the pollsters now.

    I really wish we could somehow build a bridge between our two sides.  Legal rights for equal marriage will come in the law, and churches that want to assert that in their own ceremonies that it is only between one man and one women will be free to carry on with that interpretation, and other churches that believe it is two people in love will be able to celebrate that also.  I don’t know if polygamy will even come – nobody seems to be asking for it, there are no lobby groups, nobody seems to have proposed anything.

  • RomanEnvoy

    Nobody was asking for homosexual ‘marriage’, but David Cameron announced it to a rapturous Tory Party conference. And the winds of relativism always blow full circle. Today Brazil, tomorrow Basingstoke…..

  • nytor

    “There are already polygamous marriages in the UK, just not recognised as such, this is mainly in the Muslim community”

    Indeed, and one of these days it will be recognised in the name of “equality and diversity”. In one sense the Mohammedans take advantage of the lack of recognition – the number of “single mothers” on benefits in that community beggar belief given their heathenism’s strict stance on these things, and the cold fact is that these “single mothers” are in fact second third and fourth “wives”, and that the state is paying for polygamy and for each “wife” to have her own household. Better by far to make it wholly illegal to enter into bigamous marriages even if they are not state recognised. It would certainly ease the burden on the benefits system of third world immigrants who behave like Saudi princes – but at our expense.

  • GulliverUK

    Thanks for that.  Millions of people who are gay want it, and more than that, their parents, brothers and sisters, aunts, uncles, friends — they all want them to have equal rights too, which is why it is no surprise that most people are in favour of it, because many people have someone in their family who is gay, or have a friend who is gay.

    If you can show evidence of countries which have introduced polygamy in the last 5 years I’d be grateful, otherwise, what they do in Brazil is of no concern to us in the UK, even if it is an interesting thing to debate for a few moments in time.  I don’t remember the last time we saw another country enact a law and said, my goodness, isn’t that good, let’s copy that.  You seem to think it’s commonplace so I would be more than happy to debate if you have examples.

  • nytor

    “The polls always show a majority in support of “”equal marriage””

    Not always they don’t.

  • GulliverUK

    The only ones that don’t here in the UK are the fixed ones, from you know who.  We know they’re fixed because a) the questions are set by the people requesting the poll and set in a biased way and b) the poll data is usually skewed to include more from an older age group who are against change.  These are provable facts.  When you ask the most simple questions, “Do you support equal marriage rights for same-sex couples?” you get a straight-forward answer.  I have about 10 polls all showing 61%-85% support in the UK, over a period of 5 years, and you can find that same support in other countries who are proposing it.

    Here’s a new one.  In Australia;

    53% among Christians (with 41% opposed)62% among members of other religions (with 30% opposed), and67% among people with no religion (with 24% opposed).
    http://www.australianmarriageequality.com/wp/a-majority-of-christians-support-marriage-equality/

    and in the Dawkins IPsosMORI poll that had 61% of Christians here, and we know it’s a majority of US Catholic followers.When will these pages reflect them and their views and not a more dogmatic narrowly-focused view, dictated by leaders who many believe are out-of-touch with the beliefs of their congregation. 

    I’m only reporting what I read in polls — it’s no use pretending they’re all wrong, or pretending that the majority of Catholics hold the wrong views.

    Lawrence O’Donnell – Majority Of U.S. Catholics Back Gay Rights In Survey

  • GulliverUK

    I can only point out that the church is a major recipient of gift aid due to its charitable status, which is questionable since it doesn’t benefit  the whole community.  It doesn’t benefit the Muslim population, nor Jewish, nor Buddhists.  

    Add to this the fact the churches are sitting on vast fortunes whilst asking Scottish Catholics to stump up another £100,000 to fight against equality, bringing the total to £150,000.   That is enough to provide 450,000 vaccinations in developing countries.  It makes me really sad to think 20,000+ children die every single day due to preventable diseases, contaminated water and malnutrition and the Scottish Catholic church is focused on an un-winnable war, is seen as a hate-monger, is damaging the reputation of Catholics as a whole — you know those news stories about Cardinal O’Brien reach right around the world, and paint Catholicism in a very bad light.  And I would want to stand up for that majority, those who support equality.

  • http://ecclesandbosco.blogspot.com/ ecclesiastes

    Homosexuals have equal rights. They can marry an adult human of the opposite sex, just the same as heterosexuals can. Any other legal contract is simply not “marriage”.

  • Jamesy

    So a majority want it? Ok then, let’s have a referendum. When Cardinal O’Brien called for one it was denied. The only reason the great and the good won’t support a referendum is because they know they can’t win. When the British people get in the privacy of a polling booth they will reject this monstrous imposition.

  • GulliverUK

    You don’t hold referendum on civil rights matters – those are matters for debate by governments.  Either the right stands on the evidence and reasoned argument or it falls to be considered at another time.  The government would also assess the legal argument, for itself, and in the case of most civil rights issues, legal opinion will have a determining influence.

    In the case of the freedom to marry, where the rights between Civil Partnerships and marriage are so similar, and no new rights would be given, then as the justices of the the U.S. Circuit
    Court of Appeals, talking about California’s controversial Proposition 8, said it was unconstitutional because the ban “served no purpose, and
    had no effect, other than to lessen the status and dignity of gays and
    lesbians.”

    The argument is over a word which indicates a status, and because of the actions of some, who have denigrated and demeaned gay couples in Civil Partnerships, they themselves have lessoned the status of Civil Partnerships, encouraging everyone to see them as of a lessor class, a lower status, 2nd-class, along with denomisation of the people in them as 2nd-class citizens.  Such things are inherently bad for society, for cohesion within society, they damage the economy, damage peoples abilities to go about their business leading happy and fulfilled lives, and cause anxiety, stress, frustration, isolation, depression and so on. You don’t hold minority rights back to appease the tyranny of the majority, or the tyranny of a powerful clandestine minority who can win by throwing whatever-it-takes financially, to get the result they want.  Moves such as the latter are reprehensible, dishonest and undemocratic, and where they happen, people see, and people remember who has done what.

  • GulliverUK

    Equal legal rights in most respects – there are anomalies which mean some pensions are lower than they would be, but the government say they are working to fix that.  Well, it’s only 7 years, and the wheels of government turn slowly. :(   As I pointed out elsewhere, the status is the term Civil Partnership is not the universally recognised one.  Now, this can particularly cause problems overseas, and it damages our competitiveness in the world.  Married gay couples from the US or elsewhere won’t want to come here if their relationship status is suddenly changed to Civil Partnered from Married !  We may fail to attract inward investment from companies because they want a level playing field, on an international scale, at least for countries in the same state of development.

    I think what you might be saying is that the argument goes that gay couples have Civil Partnerships and shouldn’t that be sufficient?

    Is that significantly different from saying that Rosa Parks should have been happy to sit at the back of the bus because it took her to the same place as the white people at the front?

    Would you be happy with Rosa Parks being forced to sit at the back of the bus?  If so what does that say about you?  

    How do you answer that last point – is it ok for Rosa Parks to be told she should sit at the back of the bus and be happy because she’s lucky she’s on the bus at all ?

    ps. Before replying, please try to remember the Gospels — unless you don’t believe in them !

  • nardialop

     No, it would be like saying that Rosa Parks is redefined as  white.

  • RomanEnvoy

    I’m not aware of any poll taken before Cameron’s 2011 announcement about gay ‘marriage’ that showed a majority of people were in favour of it. Naturally, I stand to be corrected, but I would have imagined that if there was one, it would have come out by now, if you’ll pardon the pun….

  • platykurtosis

    Number of countries in which  same sex marriage is legal: 11
    Number of countries in which polygamy is legal: 47
    Number of countries in which both polygamy and same sex marriage are legal: 0

    Conclusion: if you want to prevent polygamy, allow same sex marriage.

  • nytor

    It’s not a civil rights matter. There is no such recognised “right” anywhere in international law.

  • platykurtosis

    And just another thing. I’d like to put some humanity on the people the Catholic Church wants to hurt. Because I’m one of them.

    My name is Dan. I have a PhD in science and I work in research. I’m 30 years old. I’m in love with my boyfriend John, who is a 35 year old legal professional. We’ve been together for six years, some of it overseas from one another. We’ve put up with a lot of hardship to be together. We like going for long hikes and bike rides, dinner parties with our friends and looking after their kids, and quiet nights watching movies.

    My straight friends have mostly been married for ages. They didn’t get married because they wanted to procreate, they got married because they loved one another. And when I’ve gone to their weddings, it really does hurt that we can’t do the same thing. Even if it’s just about the name. It feels like discrimination at the most basic level.

    What’s so bad about me, about my life, my love for John? Could you say it to my face, “I think you should have less rights than me, because I’m a better person than you, because God disapproves of you. I want to prevent you from ever getting married.” Could you?

  • platykurtosis

    No, this isn’t equal. Men and women are being treated differently. A man can marry a woman, but not another man. The law is drawing a line between men and women and saying “all marriages must cross this line”. But any law that divides men and women is clearly sexist.

    The situation is unfair to both men and women, but it’s false to claim there’s equality.

  • Meena

    One man and two or more women goes back to Old Testament days and the God Yahweh, who approved of this (polygamy), and who is surely the Christian God before he was revealed (in Christian belief) in the person of Jesus Christ.
    Is this not so?

  • Meena

    “It [unable to marry (in Church?)]  feels like discrimination at the most basic level…..
    What’s so bad about me, about my life, my love for John?”
    The short answer is: nothing at all is wrong or bad about you.

    Some, mainly “religious” people (including those who are nominal Catholics and other nominal Christians) would see you as bad, and some of these would say so to your face.
    Catholics believe, wrongly, that they “own” marriage, as they believe they “own” other things, even the menstrual blood (punishment for the daughters of Eve) through their stigmata.  
    The reason for this is clear to those of us who are outside the hothouse of deep Catholic belief:  it is, for them, a precious vestige of the power they once possessed, in their heydays, maintained then by their cruelties and threats.  

    I am heterosexual and married with my own children, but I am grateful that our society is largely led by enlightened people who will sweep-away the evil discrimination that you presently suffer. 

  • awkwardcustomer

    Okay, here it is.  According to the Catechism of the Catholic Church, paragraph 1867:

    ‘…. there are sins that cry to heaven …’. 

    These include:  ‘…. the sin of the Sodomites….’.  

    By way of explanation:  ‘Sin is an utterance, a deed, or a desire contrary to the eternal law (St Augustine, Contra Faustum 22: PL 42, 418).  It is an offence against God.  It rises up against God in a disobedience contrary to the obedience of Christ.’  (CCC, para 1871)
     
    This is what polite and well-meaning Catholics here and elsewhere are trying to avoid saying.  That according to the teachings of the Catholic Church, sodomy is a sin that cries to heaven.

  • Jeannine

    No one is stopping you from loving your boyfriend. Go hiking together, live in the same house, have dinner parties together… I bet you’re a very good babysitter! Do you need a piece of paper to allow you to be with your partner? 

    Are there prejudices against persons with same-sex attraction? Yes & they will never be minimized until everyone realizes that same sex relationships have limitations. Same-sex couples can not biologically & naturally produce children: a function given to heteosexual couples.

    I keep thinking of the life of a blind person. I accept that person as an individual who just so happens to be blind. The blindness of this person does not limit or degrade his/her humanity but limits his/her functions related to sight compared to the seeing population. He/she is a loved, child of God, always. And so it is with persons with same sex attractions. They are also so loved by God & are given different gifts to enhance the goodness in societies. That said, those gifts do not include procreation.

    The problem is that most homosexuals & uncatechized Christians do not understand that marriage is for the procreation & mental well-being of children. Governments up until the late 20th century knew this too. Heteosexual marriage was always encouraged because the leaders knew it was ideally suited for a mentally sound, future population.  

    Finally, the Church views intercourse outside of marriage as sinful. This obviously applies not only to homosexuals but heteosexuals too. So you are not alone there.

  • GulliverUK

    I’m think you’re wrong.  The recent IFS report shows that children whose parents cohabit rather than being married do just as well as those of married parents.  And the only reason children are disadvantaged in single-parent families is primarily through income.  And around 20% of those in Civil Partnerships had been in a heterosexual marriage previously, many had children.  Marriage is NOT for procreation and never has been, in fact until just several hundred years ago commoners rarely got married at all, marriage was designed to shore up great houses, pass on wealth, and its primary purpose wasn’t love.  Marriage has been redefined, by us, by society, across a good part of the planet, and platykurtosis was absolutely right, getting a Civil Partnership, or getting Married, or cohabiting, is about love.  If you’re not getting together because of love — there is something fundamentally wrong with you.

    Multiple other reports show that children in same-sex households have the same outcomes to equivalent heterosexual households.  The research and studies are all there, on the Internet, free for anyone to read. 

    Nowhere in the Marriage Act does it say marriage is for pro-creation, if that were so older people past the age of conception, or those who were infertile, or those who didn’t want to have children would be excluded.  Or to put it in a Catholic term, where there is no possibility of creation there should be no marriage.  Marriage belong to the state, it’s a legal contractual agreement between parties and the state.  In your eyes it’s a contract between parties and God.  The difference is the ceremony has no legal status, and the legal contract has no status with your God – so render unto Caesar the things which are Caesar’s, and unto God the things that are God’s”.Collap

  • nardialop

    “Multiple other reports show that children in same-sex households have
    the same outcomes to equivalent heterosexual households. ”  Multiple reports and testimonies shows the opposite. They also show the many reports are not reliable because the small amount of data or because the author bias.

    However I agree in that “The research
    and studies are all there, on the Internet, free for anyone to read.”

  • GulliverUK

    Actually, it’s recognised Universally, it’s just that dictators and tyrants often aren’t too fussy about human rights.

    All are created equal — all meaning male, female, gay, straight, black, white, able and disabled.

    First line of the UN Universal Declaration of Human Rights….

    “Whereas recognition of the inherent dignity and of the equal and inalienable rights of all members of the human family is the foundation of freedom, justice and peace in the world,”

    Civil Rights are nation by nation, Human Rights are by the foundation of those signed up to the treaty.

    I might add that it was voted on and passed in 1948, even Iran voted for it.  So I don’t know if you believe Iran follows the rules and protects human rights … I don’t.  They’re almost as likely to chop off the head of a Christian for saying something unkind about the Koran as they are to hang someone who is gay, just for being gay.

    Which is why I think you lot are fighting the wrong people.  You’ve become confused about who the true enemy is, and it’s those who would deny life to both of us, and I don’t mean countries that follow Islam, I mean people who would violate human rights.

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Universal_Declaration_of_Human_Rights

  • GulliverUK

    Oh absolutely.  The Populus/Times polls in 2009 showed 61%.  When it was done again recently it was 65%.  Oh bother, you’ll want the links then;  (speak amongst yourselves for a moment …….)

    Here you go…

    Populus Gay Time Poll 2009
    http://www.populus.co.uk/uploads/download_pdf-100609-The-Times-The-Times-Gay-Britain-Poll.pdf

    and

    Populus Gay Time Poll 2012
    http://www.populus.co.uk/uploads/OmGay_Rights.pdf

    The question was very simple; “Gay couples should have an equal right to get married, not just to have civil partnerships

    The thing is RomanEnvoy how come you are totally against equal rights, so sure everybody else is, and yet haven’t done the more basic of research to find out what the poll data says.  I try to never make any statements publically (on the Internet) without having mountains of data to back me up.

    Sir, you stand corrected !  :)

  • GulliverUK

    Really ?  Never heard that one before.

    Rosa Parks was black, and she was discriminated against, with only White people being allowed to sit anywhere they liked, and Black people having to sit at the back of the bus.  It could just as well have been Men and Women, with Women being made to sit only at the back of the bus.  Either way, White Man and White Women, or White Man and Black Women, they were still unfairly treated as women, or as people of colour.

    At a time some people could see the discrimination, the harm it caused, the hurt and unfairness, but eventually their eyes were opened, and they truly did see for the first time.  Lots of Christians saw Civil Partnerships as creating the back-of-the-bus situation, and many more have since realised it does that, but there are always the ‘dogmatic’ types who need extra 1 to 1 sessions to make the grade.

    I’m free next Thursday for a few hours counselling if you’re ready !  :-p

  • nytor

    There is no right to “gay marriage” enshrined in the document you cite.

  • nardialop

    First is disrespectful to the African-American community to say that the homosexual movement is similar to their struggle, it is not. They were fighting to obtain a recognized right. The homosexual movement is fighting to obtain an un-recognized right. Second, my analogy is that you can not call an african-american whith by the power of the law. The same, you cannot call an homozexual union marige by the power of the law, they are different things.

  • nytor

    The Church does not “want to prevent” you from getting married. The Church believes that it is a theological impossibility that the sacrament of marriage could be validly conferred on two men.

  • GulliverUK

    No they don’t. The only report which has shown a negative outcome is the Regnerus one, and analysts have said that report is unscientific, biased, even Regnerus has admitted it has flaws.  He didn’t even compare what he said he compared, he didn’t compare lesbian same-sex households with partners in stable long-term relationships who had legal protections with heterosexual households in stable long-term relationships who were married.  He’s compared a plumb with a horse. Now only that there is a major investigation in to his conduct.  It’s quite possible he won’t be publishing any studies in the future.  The $800k for the study was paid for by the notoriously homophobic Witherspoon Institute, just to create biased non-scientific data for a hate campaign, unfortunately so many professional bodies have torn his report to shreds, claim-by-claim, that his position in academic circles may be over.  Power corrupts absolutely, but money corrupts even more !

    The reports that are there are sufficient for many professional organisation to back same-sex marriages, but not just in one place, in many countries.  We’ve had adoption by gay couples here for ages, and they have in parts of the US.  Even where it’s not legal for two gay parents to adopt, one has adopted.  Adoption is being added in New Zealand, it’s being done in France, they’ll have same-sex marriage in 2013.  New Zealand and Australia will have it also.

    It Catholics really cared about the children they’d welcome this because those children grow up in same-sex households now and it causes difficulty if families don’t have the proper set of legal protections they need.  Where the adherence to Catechism 2358 ?

  • nytor

    You think a question containing the loaded term “equal marriage” is not skewed, do you?

    As for American Catholics – they are in the main ill-catechised and heretical. Americanism, condemned by Leo XIII, appears to be resurgent.

  • nytor

    Again, that question is loaded. It refers to “equal rights” and “not just” partnerships. It’s actively inviting a response. I refuse to consider it neutral.

  • nardialop

    Analysts have not said that the report is unscientific, a LGBT activist and blog author Scott Rosensweig accused Regnerus of crafting a stud. That is a common practice of the homosexual community, to bully and discredit whoever dares to have a different opinion. After an investigation the University of Texas reached to the conclusion that no formal investigation is warranted. Many other researchers (28 I think) issued a letter supporting Regnerus research and methodology. There are other studies and testimonies that you can find in the internet.Most of this testimonies are made by sons and daughters of homosexual couples. 
    Regnerus does not admit any flaws, or at least in the sense you are using it. He just points out that the data is limited and more research is needed. However, his research is the most complete and extensive that has been published up to date. If he is publishing more papers only he knows. However, if I were him I would be careful because the homosexual movement will keep the pressure on him, and they can destroy his career.

  • RomanEnvoy

    Yes, that’s interesting. A similar YouGov poll in March 2012 had only a minority of 43% of people supporting gay ‘marriage’, so these surveys are, I’m sure you’ll agree, quite unreliable for divining the public mood.

    However, this minority figure of 43% was exactly replicated in a July 2011 poll conducted by Angus Reid Public Opinion, so, on the basis of these two corroborating polls, each carried out by different polling authorities, I’d feel safer betting that the real percentage of people supporting gay ‘marriage’ was less than the required 50% (as these polls show), and which might explain why the governments of various jurisdictions within the British Isles are so reluctant not just to put the matter before the people, but even to carry out a proper consultation on the matter.

  • Michael Petek

    What’s bad about it is this.

    Marriage is holy, while homosexual acts go against the natural moral law. Homosexual acts ‘close the sexual act to the gift of life. They do not proceed from a genuine affective and sexual complementarity. Under no circumstances can they be approved.
    Sacred Scripture condemns homosexual acts ‘as a serious depravity… (cf. Rom 1:24-27; 1 Cor 6:10; 1 Tim 1:10). This judgment of Scripture does not of course permit us to conclude that all those who suffer from this anomaly are personally responsible for it, but it does attest to the fact that homosexual acts are intrinsically disordered’. This same moral judgment is found in many Christian writers of the first centuries and is unanimously accepted by Catholic Tradition. (CDF – Considerations Regarding Proposals for Legal Recognition of Unions Between Homosexual Persons – 03-06-2003)

  • GulliverUK

    Those scriptural texts don’t refer to loving same-sex acts but Pagan fertility rituals practised at the time.  They refer to ‘temple shrine prostitutes’.  Some places may refer to pederasty (in the case of the Catholic church perhaps abuse stretches back further than we thought).

    The only single thing that would be “intrinsically disordered” is calling other people names, or saying they’re “intrinsically disordered”, and making up all sorts of lies to whip up hatred.  I personally would like to have the law changed to stop the preaching of hate like this.  Fine inside the walls of church (not broadcast on YouTube ofcourse), but not ok in the public space, where we all have to get along.

    Paul was talking about heterosexuals being encouraged to be bisexual in Roman culture – exchanging their natural sexual orientation for a false one.  Our ancestors were primitives compared to us, but far from stupid, they knew you shouldn’t coerce someone in to going against their innate sexual and romantic attractions.  For those that were bisexual it wouldn’t have been a problem, only those unwilling and coerced.

    Let’s put this plainly;

    “in a church which accepts the legitimacy of contraception, the absolute condemnation of same-sex relations of intimacy must rely either on an abstract fundamentalist deployment of a number of very ambiguous texts, or on a problematic and non-scriptural theory about natural complementarity, applied narrowly and crudely to physical differentiation without regard to psychological structures.”

    Rowan Williams said that in 1989.  He also said;

    “…by the end of the 80′s I had definitely come to the conclusion that scripture was not dealing with the predicament of persons whom we should recognise as homosexual by nature. And many of the arguments assumed by theologians in the Middle Ages and later increasingly seemed to beg questions or to rest on contested grounds. I concluded that an active sexual relationship between two people of the same sex might therefore reflect the love of God in a way comparable to marriage, if and only if it had about it the same character of absolute covenanted faithfulness.”

    Yes, yes, wrong church.  However, I believe what he says makes a lot of sense.  He’s a Biblical scholar of repute, and this was before he was neutered in what he could say.

  • GulliverUK

    The law has no interest in sacraments – they are meaningless in the law, although I understand you hold them in high regard.  Accept also that other faiths and cultures have no interest in your sacraments.  They’re unique and special to you.

    For the legal system, the primary concern is, in the UK’s case, is to create a society with fairness, social justice, equality, an equal chance for all to be happy and prosper, a society which works and plays together without destructive influences and division, to promote education and understanding, to grow our status as human beings, to be kind and compassionate, caring for those in need.  These are human qualities, although many are, in fact, qualities you’ll find in your pet dog or cat, or in squirrels, lions, elephants, monkeys and apes in particular.

    A society which works together harmoniously and has equality actually does better economically.  That has been studied and observed.

    We could draw some absurd conclusion that the financial crisis has been brought about by religions – causing unfairness, isolating groups in society, creating social division and discord, damaging the stakeholder status of many in society, and causing a greed culture where self-interest is put before all else.   But that would be absurd, right?

  • GulliverUK

    The study has many flaws and doesn’t compare compatible like situations, it’s conclusions are thus invalid, as is any use of the data.  It was designed incorrectly before it even started collecting data, unfortunately the people who designed the study have financial and career links to the Witherspoon Institute, NOM, and other such organisations.  They also peer reviewed the study, after some of them have been involved with the design of the study.  That is an incredible no-no.  It’s never done like that because it’s a serious conflict of interest.

    Lots of professional bodies have slated the study – not simple a gay activist. btw, because I debate I suppose I’m an activist too.  That makes you a religious activist.

    Regnerus will turn out to be a Paul Cameron and end up only being able to work for himself, running some sort of hate institute.  Mark my words — let’s have £5 on it ! :-p

    Just found this, have a read, you’ll see what I said was true;
    http://chronicle.com/blogs/percolator/controversial-gay-parenting-study-is-severely-flawed-journals-audit-finds/30255

    “Sherkat said that fact alone in the paper should have “disqualified it immediately” from being considered for publication.”

    and

    “Wright points out (as Regnerus himself wrote) that the paper could be read as supportive of gay marriage because it seems to indicate that more-stable households produce less-troubled children.”

    I think I might start citing it as an example of a survey which support marriage equality !!!!  :)

  • GulliverUK

    Article 16, (1)

    “Men and women of full age, without any limitation due to race, nationality or religion, have the right to marry and to found a family. They are entitled to equal rights as to marriage, during marriage and at its dissolution.”

    It doesn’t say they have to marry each other, it just gives the rights to both males and females.

    In many countries and US states men and men, and women and women, do marry or have civil unions – which are recognised in law.  In addition, many churches are affirming and even before they could carry out a marriage, they were blessing these unions.

    Please remember, the majority of Catholics are for equality.  You might not find them here, in this tiny space, and that’s because it’s Friday night and they’re indoors watching the TV, dog at their feet, young kids in bed (hopefully), and older ones moaning about why haven’t they got an X-box.  Or they might be watching the TV with their ….. same …. sex …. partner !! :-p

  • GulliverUK

    Comparing that to the Christian Institute (C4M) one, which is so loaded and convoluted it’s a wonder anyone even understood it, then this one is neutral and simple.

    I really don’t see what the problem is – it’s IS about having equal rights, so why try to disguise that.

  • GulliverUK

    No, it’s not in the slightest disrespectful at all, and the NACCP, which is fully behind equal marriage rights, would disagree strongly with you.  So let’s not have any of that rubbish.  The NACCP was the civil rights organisation for black rights in the US.   

    The head of the NACCP says it’s exactly the same sort of civil rights issue, and that is why they are 100% behind it.

    The law changes to catch up with the evolving diversity in society, and to recognise that diversity.  Is a mixed race child of African-American and White-British decent …. White …. or Black ?  Are they African-American or British ?  Should we have a colour chart like they do with teeth-whitening and then give a name to each range of skin colour, in case we need to define rights by the exact shade later on ?

  • GulliverUK

    Those polls are at odds with all the others, including other comparable countries.

    - 75% in a Telegraph poll

    - 61% of Christians in the UK (IPsosMORI, Dawkins)

    - 61% general public in Scotland 2011 (Scottish Social
    Attitudes)

    - 72% of those with “no religion” (Scottish Social
    Attitudes)

    - 61% general public in 2009 (Populus)

    - 65% General public in 2012 (Populus)

    - 262 MPs in favour, 75 against so far.

    - 85% supported it a poll of atheists- 
    - 53% among Christians (with 41% opposed) – Australia
    - 62% among members of other religions (with 30% opposed) – Australia
    - 67% among people with no religion (with 24% opposed) – Australia

  • maxmarley

    Colour of skin is as nature intended, sodomy isn’t.

  • nardialop

    Yes, this makes us activist or at least apologists.

    As, I said, a tactic to the homosexual movement is bully and intimidation. What, I see here is a high degree of pressure, hostility toward the author and the editor. ‘”Wright has suffered sleepless nights since the publication of Regnerus’s
    paper, and has received a steady stream of angry e-mails, from both
    colleagues and irate strangers. In his response, he writes that
    accusations that he was trying to foster gay-bashing are “hurtful and
    preposterous” .

    Many editors and researchers will think twice to deal with conclusions that are not approved by the homosexual community or will dedicate their efforts to other topics.

    What you did not mention is that the paper was supported unanimous by the 6 reviewers. Six reviewers, an unusual number. You did not mention that University of Texas did not find any ethic problem in the paper.

    I wonder if the papers that support the homosexual lifestyle have the same degree of scrutiny. I am sure they do not.

    This only proves my point. The homosexual activists cherry pick the studies that
    they like and discard and discredit the ones that they do not like.

     

  • nardialop

    Many african-americans feels that the comparison is disrespectful. NACCP opinion is politically motivated and there is not proof that they represent the feelings of the african-american community.

    It do not matter who you dress it, they are different things.

    But you are right, the law may change. But it must change when the society change. Ok then, let’s have a referendum.

  • gentlemind

    Quote: “Once you allow two men (to marry), where are your boundaries?” Answer: In our minds.
    If a swimming pool has four walls and we take one away, there is no swimming pool. The boundaries of marriage are dictated by the physical reality of parenthood – permanence, heterosexuality (both sexes) and exclusivity (only two people). Non-heterosexual marriage breaks the boundaries. So too would impermanence or inexclusivity. but opposition to them could not be met with an accusation equivalent to homophobia. Free from physical reality, marriage and parenting are nothing but states of mind, limited only by our imagination.

  • RomanEnvoy

    There’s a wonderful irony in you accusing Christians of quoting ‘fixed’ surveys, but then referencing Dawkins’ one above.

    Like I said, various poll results differ from one another so much that to divine truth from them is a redundant venture. If your only argument for gay ‘marriage’ is that SOME polls seem to portray a majority in favour of it, then that to me implies the rationale for such a proposal isn’t just flawed, but non-existent.

  • GulliverUK

    You have a stylised version of marriage with specifications to match what you currently believe today, but which is different from that in the Bible .. remember these;

    http://twitpic.com/9ost0c/full

    1. Polygamy. Genesis 29:17-28; II Samuel 3:2-5
    2. Concubines. II Samuel 5:13; I Kings 11:3; II Chronicles 11:21
    3. Non-virginal brides executed. Deuteronomy 22:13-21
    4. No mixed-faith marriages. Genesis 24:3; Numbers 25:1-9; Ezra 9:12; Nehemiah 10:30
    5. No divorce. Deuteronomy 22:19; Mark 10:9
    6. A man must marry his dead brother’s widow. Genesis 38:6-10; Deuteronomy 25:5-10

    Also your version of marriage, for your current beliefs, is different from Sharia law which allowed, albeit under restrictions (not just because you want to), for a man to marry up to four women.  Polygamy of that sort would never be allowed anyway, because it would have to be any combination – could be 4 women, 4 men, 2 women and 2 men, or all sort of combinations — if we’re going to be a society which values equality and fairness.

    The Catholic vision of priests as celibate (clearly they aren’t all celibate) is also not the vision of the Church of England, or most other religions.  And if we were to accept that it has no biblical validity, and is actually very bad for human beings (unless they are for some reason naturally inclined to celibacy), to be without a partner.

    You know I’m reminded that when I lived on my own I didn’t always do the dishes, and wasn’t fastidious about tidiness – I had nobody to please or any reason to do anything other than that which pleased me.  Having a partner gives you a sense of joint adventure, shared responsibilities, a desire to protect that relationship and make it grow, to maintain it.  So dishes get done when the same day, the place is tidier, there’s a reason to strive to achieve more, for us two, and we’re so much stronger each of us, knowing there is someone to catch you when you fall, or share the load, the burdens, and share the job of life.  I can only imagine the life of a Catholic priest is incredibly lonely — the very reason your God created Eve.  It is not good for man to be alone.  I recently found out that some Catholic priests have problems with alcohol and substance abuse, and although I didn’t know this until recently I wasn’t shocked like I should have been.  But then it was only about 5-6 years ago I found out doctors had high suicide rates and drug and alcohol problems — and you’d think they’d be able to a) recognise this and immediately take action b) plugged in to all the support and help groups going and c) be too rational of mind to succumb to this.

  • Alien King

    It hasn’t just happened though, as a result of gay marriage, has it?  It happened months ago, before gay marriage has even come in for most people.  You cannot equate this application for polygamy with gay marriage, they are totally separate.  Fight polygamy if you wish, but you don’t need to blame the possibility of it on gay marriage.  For goodness sake, there were plenty of polygamous Christian marriages in the past (ncluding in the Old Testament), and in some cultures polygamy is practised today. It’s hardly the fault of accepting gay marriage.

  • GulliverUK

    Language like that just makes you look like a homophobe.  Your pithy and sneering remarks indicates you to be a bully to others, and thus a danger to society and group cohesion.

    We’re talking about sexual orientation, which is innate from birth, just like handedness (which hand you prefer to use) is developed in the womb.   

    Sexuality is as innate as skin colour, just not overtly outwardly visible.

    However, if you reply to me, you may find only one letter visible per line, which is at least some consolation to me  :-p