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January 16, 2014

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This post is a perfect example of bad faith. This kind of insincerity is a black mark on evangelical Christianity. You're just twisting words around to squeeze out a few political points. Go ahead then - wiggle and squirm all you like. You're showing the world how corrupt the evangelical political efforts have become in the United States.

I agree with John Moore.

Moreover, the net result of a constitutional amendment is that same sex marriage is in fact banned.

Dodge the language all you want, the result for gay couples is the same.

You can't ban something that doesn't exist.

Defining a circle as round doesn't constitute a ban on square "circles."


Marriage amendments, such as the California Marriage Amendment, voted in as Proposition 8, and "defense of marriage" laws are often referred to in news articles, commentaries, and other media as "bans on gay marriage."

I frequently point out that this phraseology is inaccurate and misleading – and I don't like it when it is used by "marriage defenders" or the marriage neutering crowd.

I maintain that "same-sex marriage" is an oxymoron akin to "dry liquid".

Even granting that a man could marry a man, or a woman could marry a woman, the use of the phrase "ban on gay marriage" is still sloppy.

First, notice that there is a difference between "gay" and "same-sex". I don't know of anyone who is asking that the sexual orientation of the individuals obtaining a marriage license together be noted anywhere in the paperwork. It has never been part of the process. Consequently, a man of any sexual orientation and a woman of any sexual orientation have always been able to obtain a marriage license together, provided neither one was currently married to someone else, and provided they were not close relatives and were of age. A gay man could marry a lesbian or a straight woman. Likewise, a straight man could marry a lesbian. All of these combinations have happened more than once.

When and where neutered marriage licensing occurs, there is nothing preventing two straight men from obtaining such a license together, nor two straight women – provided they meet all of the requirements (marital status, age, non-relation). Thus the phrase "same sex" is more accurate than "gay".

The word "ban" is also wrong. Our marriage laws are no more a "ban" on same-sex marriage than they are a "ban" on polygamy.

Same-sex (and presumably homosexual) couples were having "marriage" ceremonies for years before any state in our country neutered their marriage laws. They have exchanged rings, have had a minister officiate, have lived together, have referred to each other with spousal designations, have changed names, have held receptions and gone on "honeymoom" vacations, so on and so forth. Employers and other organizations could recognize them as married if they so chose. Neither California's Marriage Amendment, nor any other similar law prohibits any of this. Thus, it is not a ban.

Incestuous marriages have been recognized in the past, though now they are actually banned as people are prosecuted in most places for sexual activity among consenting adults who are closely related. People go to jail for this activity – forget about being a denied a state-issued marriage license.

Some – not all - states in the USA had actual bans on "interracial" marriage in the past that were struck down by a SCOTUS decision. Marriage neutering activists frequently compare this to the situation with neutered marriage licensing, but the comparison is flimsy.

With the adoption of the California Marriage Amendment or any other such law in other states, no couples were forced to split up or forced to stop living together.

Affirming traditional marriage licensing is not a "gay marriage ban". Such language is used by media outlets who abandon objectivity and engage in advocacy and manipulation.

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