Why ban gay "marriage"?

I understand why we, as Catholics, do not agree with gay “marriage.” I put marriage in quotes because I do not believe a marriage, in the sacramental sense, can exist outside of a heterosexual couple. I understand why the Church will not recognize these “marriages.”

But why ban them in the legal/civil sense? I don’t see how a same sex couple is hurting anyone but themselves and, while I would love for these folks to not commit the implied sinful acts, I don’t see how we can justify forcing anyone who does not share our beliefs to follow the behaviors associated with them.

Does this make sense? Tell me where/if I’m wrong on this topic. It’s one that’s been bothersome for me, as I have gay friends from my pre-Catholic life, and it’s really the only issue where I feel like I’m not 100% in line with the Church.

Hi Abrigham, that’s an important question.

I think there are lots of responses on why same-sex marriage should not be allowed in society, the most significant being that there is no such thing (it’s made up), and so never a good idea to legislate a lie or fantasy.

I would, however, argue on two points why we should not allow same-sex marriage.

Firstly, it harms children. If the nature of marriage does not of itself contain the potential of procreation, as indeed it would not if same-sex marriage is recognised as legitimate, then we cannot say that children naturally belong to marriage, or more precisely, that children are bound to their parents and parents to their children through marriage. In fact, at the moment the only Western institution that binds children to their parents and families is marriage. If we throw that out too, we are essentially saying that children are “accessories” and not integral to the relationship between man and woman; moreover, that they themselves are not significant socially since we do not recognise any institution that inherently binds them to those who are supposed to care for them on a natural, social or legal level. This is a huge problem, by far the worst where I’m concerned.

Secondly, allowing same-sex marriage legitimates homosexual actions and relationships: they become normal and morally okay (you don’t legalise something that isn’t). Therefore, it would further change the mindset of people that homosexual actions and relationships are good things, and concomitantly make the Church’s stance (which is to draw people to God and stop their damnation) even more difficult to publicly maintain and preach. It will imperil souls and harm the Church.

I hope you can consider these points, Abrigham.

God bless.

In addition, state recognition of same sex marriage will necessarily make it the default position of the state. The beliefs of Catholics and others who object to same sex marriage will automatically be relegated to second class status. Worse than second class status, speaking our own beliefs will be called hate speech and may be outlawed and subject to fines.

Public schools will teach that families may consist of two moms, two dads, or other varieties. Already there are homosexual oriented books for elementary school children: “Heather Has Two Mommies.” “King and King,” which normalize same sex marriage for children. Parents will be out of the loop as their children are indoctrinated.

Catholic businesses will be forced to recognize same sex marriage, even though it violates their conscience. Already there have been lawsuits against bakers, photographers, and others who refuse to participate in same sex wedding preparations. There will be no conscience waiver. We will be forced to cooperate with what we view as gravely immoral.

Just a note…the above responses are why we don’t want the state (GOV) to “promote” same-sex civil unions as being equal to Marriage. That is different that wanting to “ban”. We aren’t “banning” anyting…because it isn’t recognized as Marriage…yet.

A really good question to ask is: Why does the state promote Marriage in the first place? Very quickly you will find out that this has nothing, absolutely NOTHING to do with equal rights. (Same sex “couples” already have the legal right and protection to live as they wish, with whom they wish, etc…they just don’t get the tax breaks and familial status that Married couples receive. So it boils down to WHY Married couples receive those benefits…and the answer is one that is exclusive to couples who are able to procreate and provide the best potential environment for children. Not that same sex “couples” can’t provide a loving home…but they can’t provide the “best” home…according to studies that show that the “best” in one with a mother and father. The whole topic It has everything to do with the meaning of Marriage and why the state bothers to promote it with all the benefits that it does. It is not about equal rights.

Well said ahs. :thumbsup:

And ditto the comments about incorrectly referring to it as a “ban”

“gay marriage” is an oxymoron.

And the folk who think you can change the definition of words so dramatically as that should think about these dilemmas.

  • Bible skeptics fiercely challenge the biblical use of the word “bat” in the same category as “birds”. Is a bat a bird?

  • Does a man dressed as a woman with breast implants and a Dolly Parton wig have the universal “civil right” to be called a woman?

  • Can we change the definition of the word atheism so that it is regarded as a religion?

  • If I see a person wearing a ring does that “mean” anything?

Archbishop Cordileone states case against "gay marriage"

Q: What is the greatest threat posed by allowing gays and lesbians to marry?

A:The better question is: What is the great good in protecting the public understanding that to make a marriage you need a husband and a wife?

I can illustrate my point with a personal example. When I was Bishop of Oakland, I lived at a residence at the Cathedral, overlooking Lake Merritt. It’s very beautiful. But across the lake, as the streets go from 1st Avenue to the city limits at 100th Avenue, those 100 blocks consist entirely of inner city neighborhoods plagued by fatherlessness and all the suffering it produces: youth violence, poverty, drugs, crime, gangs, school dropouts, and incredibly high murder rates. Walk those blocks and you can see with your own eyes: A society that is careless about getting fathers and mothers together to raise their children in one loving family is causing enormous heartache.

To legalize marriage between two people of the same sex would enshrine in the law the principle that mothers and fathers are interchangeable or irrelevant, and that marriage is essentially an institution about adults, not children; marriage would mean nothing more than giving adults recognition and benefits in their most significant relationship.

How can we do this to our children?

Q: How would the allegation that opponents are bigoted lead to their rights being abridged?

A: Notice the first right being taken away: the right of 7 million Californians who devoted time and treasure to the democratic process, to vote for our shared vision of marriage. Taking away people’s right to vote on marriage is not in itself a small thing.

But the larger picture that’s becoming increasingly clear is that this is not just a debate about what two people do in their private life, it’s a debate about a new public norm: Either you support redefining marriage to include two people of the same sex or you stand accused by law and culture of bigotry and discrimination.

If you want to know what this new public legal and social norm stigmatizing traditional believers will mean for real people, ask David and Tanya Parker, who objected to their kindergarten son being taught about same sex marriage after the Massachusetts Supreme Court legalized it in that state and wanted to pull him out of class for that lesson. He was arrested and handcuffed for trying to protect his son’s education, and they were told they had no right to do so.

Ask the good people of Ocean Grove Methodist camp in New Jersey that had part of its tax-exempt status rescinded because they don’t allow same-sex civil union ceremonies on their grounds. Ask Tammy Schulz of Illinois, who adopted four children (including a sibling group) through Evangelical Child Family Services — which was shut down because it refuses to place children with same-sex couples. (The same thing has happened in Illinois, Boston and Washington, D.C., to Catholic Charities adoption services). … Ask the doctor in San Diego County who did not want to personally create a fatherless child through artificial insemination, and was punished by the courts… Ask Amy Rudnicki who testified in the Colorado Legislature recently that if Catholic Charities is shut out of the adoption business by new legislation, her family will lose the child they expected to adopt this year. … Nobody is better off if religious adoption agencies are excluded from helping find good homes for abused and neglected children, but governments are doing this because the principle of “anti-discrimination” is trumping liberty and compassion. …

When people say that opposition to gay marriage is discriminatory, like opposition to interracial marriage, they cannot also say their views won’t hurt anybody else. They seek to create and enforce a new moral and legal norm that stigmatizes those who view marriage as the union of husband and wife. … It’s not kind, and it doesn’t seem to lead to a “live and let live” pluralism.


“Gay, bisexual, and other men who have sex with men (MSM) represent approximately 2% of the US population, yet are the population most severely affected by HIV. In 2010, MSM accounted for 63% of all new HIV infections” – CDC

“Disparities in HIV infection also exist between gay and bisexual men and heterosexual populations. Recently, the CDC announced that gay and bisexual men in the United States are 44 to 86 times more likely to become infected with HIV than heterosexual men, and 40 to 77 times more likely to become infected than women.” – Obama

“In research with 942 nonclinical adult participants, gay men and lesbian women reported a significantly higher rate of childhood molestation than did heterosexual men and women. Forty-six percent of the homosexual men in contrast to 7% of the heterosexual men reported homosexual molestation. Twenty-two percent of lesbian women in contrast to 1% of heterosexual women reported homosexual molestation. This research is apparently the first survey that has reported substantial homosexual molestation of girls. Suggestions for future research were offered.” - California School of Professional Psychology

Centers for Disease Control and Prevention
President Obama’s National HIV/AIDS Strategy for the the the United States 2010 White House Report
California School of Professional Psychology

Speaking as a long time student of the English language, I don’t want to ban gay marriage. I think all marriages should be happy. I do sort of dislike it though, when perfectly good words are misappropriated.

The Bishop of San Francisco recently said that legalizing gay marriage is like legalizing male breastfeeding.

BMC Public Health. 2006 May 8;6:127.

The health of people classified as lesbian, gay and bisexual attending family practitioners in London: a controlled study.

King M, Nazareth I.

Department of Primary Care and Population Sciences, Royal Free and University College Medical School, University College London (UCL), Rowland Hill Street, London NW3 2PF, UK.

BACKGROUND: The morbidity of gay, lesbian or bisexual people attending family practice has not been previously assessed. We compared health measures of family practice attendees classified as lesbian, gay and bisexual.

METHODS: We conducted a cross-sectional, controlled study conducted in 13 London family practices and compared the responses of 26 lesbian and 85 bisexual classified women, with that of 934 heterosexual classified women and 38 gay and 23 bisexual classified men with that of 373 heterosexual classified men. Our outcomes of interest were: General health questionnaire; CAGE questionnaire; short form12; smoking status; sexual experiences during childhood; number of sexual partners and sexual function and satisfaction.

RESULTS: In comparison to people classified as heterosexuals: men classified as gay reported higher levels of psychological symptoms (OR 2.48, CI 1.05-5.90); women classified as bisexual were more likely to misuse alcohol (OR 2.73, 1.70-4.40); women classified as bisexual (OR 2.53, 1.60-4.00) and lesbian (OR 3.13, 1.41-6.97) and men classified as bisexual (OR 2.48, 1,04, 5.86) were more likely to be smokers and women classified as bisexual (OR 3.27, 1.97-5.43) and men classified as gay (OR 4.86, 2.28-10.34) were much more likely to report childhood sexual experiences in childhood. Psychological distress was associated with reporting sexual experiences in childhood in men classified as gay and bisexual and women classified as heterosexual. Men classified as bisexual (OR 5.00, 1.73-14.51) and women classified as bisexual (OR 2.88, 1.24- 6.56) were more likely than heterosexuals to report more than one sexual partner in the preceding four weeks. Lesbian, gay and bisexual classified people encountered no more sexual function problems than heterosexuals but men classified as bisexual (OR 2.74, 1.12-6.70) were more dissatisfied with their sex lives.

CONCLUSION: Bisexual and lesbian classified people attending London general practices were more likely to be smokers and gay classified men were at increased risk of psychological distress in comparison to heterosexual classified people. Increased awareness of the sexuality of people seen in primary care can provide opportunities for health promotion.

The health of people classified as lesbian, gay and bisexual attending family practitioners in London: a controlled study

BMC Psychiatry. 2008 Aug 18;8:70.

A systematic review of mental disorder, suicide, and deliberate self harm in lesbian, gay and bisexual people.

King M, Semlyen J, Tai SS, Killaspy H, Osborn D, Popelyuk D, Nazareth I.

Department of Mental Health Sciences, Royal Free and University College Medical School, Hampstead Campus, University College London, London, NW3 2PF, UK.

BACKGROUND: Lesbian, gay and bisexual (LGB) people may be at higher risk of mental disorders than heterosexual people.

METHOD: We conducted a systematic review and meta-analysis of the prevalence of mental disorder, substance misuse, suicide, suicidal ideation and deliberate self harm in LGB people. We searched Medline, Embase, PsycInfo, Cinahl, the Cochrane Library Database, the Web of Knowledge, the Applied Social Sciences Index and Abstracts, the International Bibliography of the Social Sciences, Sociological Abstracts, the Campbell Collaboration and grey literature databases for articles published January 1966 to April 2005. We also used Google and Google Scholar and contacted authors where necessary. We searched all terms related to homosexual, lesbian and bisexual people and all terms related to mental disorders, suicide, and deliberate self harm. We included papers on population based studies which contained concurrent heterosexual comparison groups and valid definition of sexual orientation and mental health outcomes.

RESULTS: Of 13706 papers identified, 476 were initially selected and 28 (25 studies) met inclusion criteria. Only one study met all our four quality criteria and seven met three of these criteria. Data was extracted on 214,344 heterosexual and 11,971 non heterosexual people. Meta-analyses revealed a two fold excess in suicide attempts in lesbian, gay and bisexual people [pooled risk ratio for lifetime risk 2.47 (CI 1.87, 3.28)]. The risk for depression and anxiety disorders (over a period of 12 months or a lifetime) on meta-analyses were at least 1.5 times higher in lesbian, gay and bisexual people (RR range 1.54-2.58) and alcohol and other substance dependence over 12 months was also 1.5 times higher (RR range 1.51-4.00). Results were similar in both sexes but meta analyses revealed that lesbian and bisexual women were particularly at risk of substance dependence (alcohol 12 months: RR 4.00, CI 2.85, 5.61; drug dependence: RR 3.50, CI 1.87, 6.53; any substance use disorder RR 3.42, CI 1.97-5.92), while lifetime prevalence of suicide attempt was especially high in gay and bisexual men (RR 4.28, CI 2.32, 7.88).

CONCLUSION: LGB people are at higher risk of mental disorder, suicidal ideation, substance misuse, and deliberate self harm than heterosexual people.

Department of Mental Health Sciences, Royal Free and University College Medical School

This is why I tell people that government should get it’s nose out of marriage (but they look at me like I’m crazy)…the only reason why it is involved is so that it can sell a license for it (a way of taxing it). It’s quite sickening that we allow that to happen, and keep looking to the government to define marriage for us, when marriage is defined already in nature by God.

I agree with the OP that we shouldn’t force our beliefs on others, but I like how you explained here the very thing that frustrates me when talking to people about this topic, and trying to explain to them that it is all about taxes not equal rights.

Thank you all. You’ve given me a lot to think about.

And sorry for using the wrong language to ask my question. Seems to be a hot button to use the word ban and marriage. I’m admittedly not very well-versed, seeing as I’m a straight married woman and I’ve never really looked into this much before because it was never an issue for me. Now that I’m Catholic and have a well-known set of beliefs associated with being Catholic people like to debate me on my personal views and I’m not the best debater. :confused:

Sexual relations between a man and a woman are naturally and necessarily different from sexual relations between same-sex partners. This truth is part of the common sense of the human race. It was true before the existence of either Church or State, and it will continue to be true when there is no State of Illinois and no United States of America. A proposal to change this truth about marriage in civil law is less a threat to religion than it is an affront to human reason and the common good of society. It means we are all to pretend to accept something we know is physically impossible. The Legislature might just as well repeal the law of gravity.

What is, then, at stake in this proposed legislation? What is certainly at stake is the natural relationship between parents and children. Children, even if they are loved and raised by those who are not their biological parents, want to know who their parents are, who are their natural family. The fascination with genealogical tables and the opening of adoption records are evidence of this desire to find oneself in a biological succession of generations. No honest “study” has disproved what we all know. Stable marriage between a husband and wife has safeguarded their children, surrounding them with familial love and creating the secure foundation for human flourishing. This natural desire, already weakened in a seemingly more and more promiscuous society, will no longer be privileged in civil law. It will be no more “normal” than any other “family” arrangement. If the nature of marriage is destroyed in civil law, the natural family goes with it.

As well, those who know the difference between marriage and same-sex arrangements will be regarded as bigots. This is where the religious question does come into play. Including “religious freedom” in the title of the proposed law recognizes that religious teaching based on natural truths will now be considered evidence of illegal discrimination and will be punishable by law. The title of the law is ironic if not disingenuous. Those who know that marriage is a union between a man and a woman for the sake of family will carry a social opprobrium that will make them unwelcome on most university faculties and on the editorial boards of major newspapers. They will be excluded from the entertainment industry. Their children and grandchildren will be taught in the government schools that their parents are unenlightened, the equivalent of misguided racists. Laws teach; they express accepted social values and most people go along with societal trends, even when majority opinion espouses immoral causes.

The legalization of abortion is a good example of how an immoral procedure that kills babies in their mother’s womb is first permitted legally in limited circumstances as a necessary evil and then moves in forty years to become a condition of human freedom, necessary to be preserved at all costs, an essential part of “reproductive health care.” We are on the same trajectory with marriage. Model laws creating same-sex unions as civil marriage have been part of legal education for decades. The media have engaged in a campaign on this issue for almost as long a time, desensitizing people to accept as normal something that had previously been recognized as problematic. We are at the end of a tremendous propaganda effort by those secure in their conviction that they are at the cutting edge of human development. But what we’re seeing is not particularly new. Two thousand years ago, the Church was born in a society with the values now being advanced as necessary for a fair society today. Source

“There is often resistance to truth in our fallen world. This does not mean that the church should ever cease proposing or proclaiming the truth. The world and its values are changing rapidly. One can either be swept along with the tide or be rooted firmly in the Lord. The point I want to make is this: Catholics, not just the bishops, have a collective responsibility to promote and defend marriage.” - Source

Have you read the Catechism cover to cover?

When people confront you about this face-to-face it’s usually not a fare fight because you will be ganged up on by a lot of emotional loud talkers. Or they could be doing it to try to get a rise out of you so they can report you to someone like if it’s on the job. So, the best thing to tell them is, “I accept what is taught about marriage in the Catechism of the Catholic Church.” And leave it at that. If it’s in a place where you could get in trouble for discussing religion and they press you more you can then tell them “no comment”.

In addition to the excellent points raised, I would like to highlight one in particular:

People who support real marriage are not ‘forcing’ anything on homosexual people. Marriage has always been recognized as between men and women. It is actually homosexual people who are trying to force their beliefs on other people by making everyone *redefine * marriage.

And it is far from just a legal push, but a cultural one.

Case in point, every once in awhile you’ll see some story trying to push the idea that some famous and well-loved historical figure, like Abraham Lincoln, was possibly gay (despite no supporting evidence). This is to try to make people think, “Huh, well if a guy like Lincoln was gay, then I guess it’s ok.”

They also have TV shows such as Ellen and GLEE that were created for the single purpose of brainwashing the public into thinking that marriage should be redefined. And it seems like it’s now mandatory that every Hollywood show have at least one “gay” cast member. With only 2% of the population being homosexual any of them that goes to Hollywood is probably guaranteed a job acting.

Dont blame yourself. People probably just wanted to help steer you away from the danger of letting others frame the terms of the debate. It’s a common tactic used by our opponents to try and make the dialectic all about “…*you intolerant catholics just want to discriminate and ban gays…” * in order to put us on the defensive.

The folk who want gay “marriage” dont make a big deal about the churches position on adultery or lying or stealing. These are entrenched moral positions and nobody accuses the church of being intolerant or bigoted in these matters.

Monogamous, heterosexual, marriage is the status quo and NOT SOMETHING WE SHOULD BE ASHAMED OF ASSERTING AS OUR WELL-DEFINED VIEW OF MARRIAGE!!!
…and we shouldnt start off on the “back foot” as if ours was the minority worldview. We do not HAVE to justify our intolerance. We have a democratic voice and secret ballot voting.

Besides, tolerance is EARNED and tolerance is contingent on what exactly the majority is being asked to tolerate! The verb, “to tolerate” by definition applies to things we dislike or disapprove. Asking our tolerance means asking us for PERMISSION.

Whats to debate? LOL
Just kidding. Dont let ppl goad you into thinking you HAVE to debate. It’s better NOT to debate than to do so before you are ready.

The reason SSM proponents have to ask permission from the majority is that THEY are the ones seeking a radical - revolutionary - change to the status quo. Why now? What’s changed?

Achieving an orgasm through homosexual activity has probably been around since The Fall and gay “marriage” has always been an anathema. In fact, the “straight” institution of “marriage” is one that gay activists used to revile as a symbol of right wing puritanism. (No sex before marriage? Until death us do part? To the exclusion of all others?)

Why would a group that espouses complete sexual freedom and optional multiple-partner promiscuity NOW want to sign up for an “old-fashioned” notion like marriage which has out-dated Judeo-Christian biblical connotations?

It’s not a case of why would they want to get married.?

It’s a case of why would they want to get married?

Homosexual activist says gay ‘marriage’ isn’t about equality, it’s about destroying marriage

I don’t think we should promote it, and if we are asked our opinion on it or to give our voice to it (like during elections) we (Catholics, Orthodox, all Christians) should certainly oppose it. But I believe now, more than ever, that there is only so much we can do. And that we should focus more on increasing the spiritual lives of people in our respective Churches. That is, despite the legality of abortion and same sex marriage, we ensure that at least those who belong to our Churches would not get an abortion or would ask for two people of the same gender to be married. It was that way in the Roman Empire. Many sinful acts were socially acceptable, but that didn’t stop Christians from being Christians. We shouldn’t act like our faith will crumble down to the ground if other people commit sin in front of us legally.

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