Thursday, August 18, 2011

The Definition of Marriage - in 1828

The following is a lengthy FaceBook thread from November 4, 2009 (there will be lengthier). They had just voted against allowing gay marriage in Maine and a friend posted her anger toward the decision. It’s edited to keep it more or less on topic. Sometimes these things go off on crazy tangents. Oddly, or not so oddly, cock-sucking became a side topic on this one – not that there’s anything wrong with that.

Also, I didn’t originally enter the fray for a while, but I will add a few interjections now. I wouldn’t have involved myself at all because things were going well, but people who base their lives on the close-minded, infinitely looping, re-translated and re-interpreted, double, triple, quadruple speak of millennia-old religious books really piss me off.

The names have been changed to protect the innocent and the guilty – and all the shady characters in between. I have also corrected spelling – because that drives me nuts.


Mary -
Are the people of Maine afraid they’ll get drunk and wake up gay married? Civil rights endure another punch to the nuts, thanks to voters. Equal rights for all is the future. It simply must be so.

Phyllis Steene -
Marriage by Webster’s 1828 dictionary: MAR'RIAGE, n. [L.mas, maris.] The act of uniting a man and woman for life; wedlock; the legal union of a man and woman for life.

Marriage is a contract both civil and religious, by which the parties engage to live together in mutual affection and fidelity, till death shall separate them. Marriage was instituted by God himself for the purpose of preventing the promiscuous intercourse of the sexes, for promoting domestic felicity, and for securing the maintenance and education of children.

need I say more...
oh yeah, and I'll be ducking those tomatoes that are coming my way. :)
RE: "Marriage was instituted by God himself for the purpose of preventing the promiscuous intercourse of the sexes"

REALLY?? I'm sorry, but do you KNOW how many "married" men and women (under their own civil AND religious views) are breaking the institutional laws with their promiscuous infidelities. Hypocrites...that's what I call them.

And what relation does education of children have on the sex of the person/people that are teaching it?

Oh, and I won't be throwing tomatoes at you... I totally agree with the fact that everyone does, can, and should have their own opinions and beliefs....

But reality is that times are changing (whether we want it to or not).... we can either waste all our energy fighting change or we can learn to accept and adapt.
WOMAN (Webster’s 1828 dictionary), n. plu. women. [a compound of womb and man.]
1. The female of the human race, grown to adult years. And the rib, which the Lord god had taken from the man, made he a woman. Genesis 2. Women are soft, mild, pitiful, and flexible. We see every day women perish with infamy, by having been too willing to set their beauty to show. I have observed among all nations that the women ornament themselves more than the men; that wherever found, they are the same kind, civil, obliging, humane, tender beings, inclined to be gay and cheerful, timorous and modest. 2. A female attendant or servant. WOMAN, v.t To make pliant.

Times have changed. I am a woman but I am certainly not mild as the above definition states. I'm not throwing tomatoes either, just pointing out that like Mary stated, times change.
I see it this way... I don't want the government in my bedroom or love life AT ALL. But if the government is going to officially sanction relationships, they have to do it equally and fairly. The current situation is straightforward discrimination.

Phyllis Steene-
I hear what you all are saying. To me "marriage" is a religious term. Since homosexuality is a sin in ALL religions, then why use the term "marriage". Civil Union, fine. Marriage-nope.

To me it's the terminology being used. I'm ok with civil union, but am not ok with marriage.

Times are changing, but nothing that happens now or in the future will be a shock to God. However, God's word according to scripture is the same today, as it was yesterday and forever will be. The times don't change God's word.

On the flip side of the coin, what about the right of a Christian? Why is it ok to push the gay agenda, but not be able to push God's laws. Where is the equality in that? :)

Phyllis - you gotta be kidding me. Do you really think that all people who get married are religious? Or even if they are, that their religion is based on the Bible? Civil marriage is a civil right, whether you are gay, straight, queer, black, white, purple, Christian, Jewish, Atheist or Satanist. It makes no difference. The government has no business making laws along the lines of ANY religious sect. It's discrimination.

I really don't see this as an issue we should be "voting" on in the first place. If a gay couple's life isn't directly effecting you, why should it matter if they're married or not. They're still going to live together as if they were. Why should anybody care but them. We have toooo much say in everybody else's life!!!!

No one is pushing the gay agenda on Christians if you don't want to marry someone of the same sex you don't have to! And if a church chooses not to marry people due to homosexuality fine, but there is supposed to be separation of church and state and for it to be illegal for gay people to be married is INSANE. Civil unions do not offer the same rights as marriage so it is discrimination. And if you are going to bring scripture into it, Jesus preached tolerance! As for it being instituted for fidelity that is the point. If gay people are in love and want to be committed to each other why shouldn't they be allowed by law to have the same rights as straight people?

Phyllis Steene-
Pre 1800's marriage was a religious ritual, the government was not involved at all. Until the late 1800's.

My husband and I are not religious at all, but we are married and enjoy the benefits of being legally bound. Even though God has nothing to do with my marriage I still have a marriage certificate, not a civil union certificate. Should I not be able to be married because I am not Christian?

Phyllis Steene-
Change the terms in the civil union. I'm ok with gay couples having the same "rights" as heterosexual couples. Just don't call it a marriage.
Read here about "separation of church and state. :)

Time out from the discussion for a moment, folks. I would love to talk about how full of bullshit that religious website is, but that is a topic that I will go into detail in a later post. Suffice it to say I love the double standard by religious clowns that government cannot interfere with religion, but religion is allowed to influence government.

Back to your scheduled program…

Phyllis Steene-
Shirley, did you get married in a church? Or justice of the peace?

We were married by a justice of the peace at our house. :).

Phyllis Steene-
I also was married by a justice of the peace, and If I remember correctly he said somewhere in the vows about God. I will have to research it now to find out! Get back to you on my thoughts! :)

Phyllis: when has "separate but equal" ever really been equal? Never, that's when. It's just a way to perpetuate the bigotry while being in denial about the bigotry.

Phyllis deleted her post at this point, so I’m not sure what it said, but you can infer her doubletalk by Elaine’s reply.

Phyllis - circular logic is circular. ;) you CHOSE a secular ceremony and secular life. Every citizen should have that same right to choose that you had. It also makes it rather odd that your first argument was Biblical. Methinks you're just grasping at straws to justify your base level of discomfort with the idea of same sex unions.

Mine definitely did not mention God. We changed our original plans to get married in a different state because the only person that could do it was a minister and we had to agree to "raise our children under the ordinance of God in the name of the father, son and holy spirit". Since we don't believe in God and don't want children we changed our plans. We made sure that the guy that did marry us kept it religion-free.

Phyllis Steene-
Elaine, for thousands of years marriage in all cultures has been between a man and a woman, why should we change that now?

It should change....just as slavery changed. If our President of the United States was born 100 years ago, he would have been a slave.

Women were also second-class citizens with few rights, but that changed!

Phyllis Steene-
My point is that marriage has always been a religious ceremony, until the 1800's when the gov't got involved, which now has skewed what marriage is. Not the act of marriage but WHO should be married.

I love when people ignore things they don’t agree with just to push the things they do. Marriage was certainly not always a religious ceremony. And it most often involved multiple women enslaved to one man.

It is almost 2010!!!! The 1800's were long time ago.

Phyllis Steene-
Mary, only if he was sold/raised in the South. The North fought to end slavery.

OH Shirley, don't even get me going on the women's lib movement.. heehee.. :)

Yeah! Those darn women wanting to be able to vote and earn equal pay for equal work.

WOW....32 comments...good going Mary and Great debate girls. This has been fun.

Phyllis - actually, not really true, at least not completely. Marriage is talked about and guidelines are given in the Bible, but if you want to get traditional about it, marriage has always been more of a sales transaction than anything else. Bartering a housekeeper/baby-maker in exchange for money, property, prestige, any number of things. Now that's not the kind of traditional values you're interested in, is it? ;)

It's the difference between technical usage and common usage. Same sex couples want the right to be able to refer to one another as husband/husband and wife/wife and to refer to their commitment ceremony as marriage, because in COMMON USAGE people understand that this means they are in a committed relationship that they intend to work on and stay within for the rest of their lives, forming a family of their own (with or without kids). And in legal terms, they want all of the same rights and privileges (visiting one another in the hospital, keeping the children when a partner dies, inheritance of property, etc.) as heterosexuals. If you start calling it something different, people start thinking of it as something different, treating it as something different, then we start legislating differently for it, and it just goes downhill from there. Just like "separate but equal" accommodations in the South after the LAST civil rights upheaval.

Do you live in the north or the south? How old are you? Anybody over about the age of 40 who has lived in the south has a very, very clear idea of just how "equal" the separate black accommodations were.

Phyllis deleted another post. It doesn’t matter. Elaine’s brilliant response is plenty to go on.

Phyllis - just because something has "always been so" in NO WAY makes it right. Torture has been acceptable for millennia. Infanticide before the age of 5? Common practice forever and ever. Rape has traditionally been a perfectly acceptable practice both within marriage and when someone's "god" directed them to conquer new lands and "civilize" the heathens there.

The real subtext of the "Its always been so, why change it now?" argument is nothing more than "I don't want to have to make an effort toward personal growth and overcome my discomfort with this new thing, let's just keep it easy and the same."

Why now? Because it's way past time. Homosexuality has existed as long as humans have existed, and it exists throughout the animal kingdom, not just in human beings. It is an inborn trait. People are MADE with hard-wired sexual preferences. It's time to stop pretending otherwise, get real, and deal with reality.

Phyllis deleted another post. Why are people afraid to stand behind their beliefs if they actually believe in them?

Phyllis - I don't blame you for believing that bit of spin, though - that's put out there by the churches, of course. Just as they float the myth that "Under God" has always been in the Pledge so that they can argue that the founding fathers were against separation of church and state. (which is an outright lie, easily researched if you see original copies of constitutional amendments. Back in the 50's they passed an amendment adding "Under God" to the Pledge and the church has been trying to forget about that little detail ever since, as it attempts to erode separations between church and state in order to gain more power and control.)

Phyllis Steene-
Elaine, I think the difference really lies in this, I approach life from a different stand point. (biblical) Instead of doing what feels right at the time. Worldly standards change daily and to me are a willy-nilly approach to life.

I disagree about homosexuality being an inborn trait to some respect, I do believe that some people are born that way, but there are others that are sexual addicts. Where their own selfish sexual desire consumes them.

There is no real "fact" to your point or mine, it's just our own life experience and beliefs that we are basing our opinions on.

Basically we agree to disagree here.

I would interject on the ignorant bullshit factor of ‘learned gay selfish consuming sexual desire,’ but that will also come up in a later post. I will point out that the only people I have ever heard use the “agree to disagree” defense are always the ones who can’t use facts to back their statements.

Phyllis-is there anyone at all that you care about or love that is gay? I do have loved ones and friends that are gay, and I put myself in their shoes.... and I always conclude that I want my friends and loved ones to have the same rights as I have. End of story.

Phyllis Steene-
I had an uncle that was gay and died of AIDS back in the 80's. To me he was born that way. He stayed with one partner for many years. They both died of AIDS.

Notice how she’s subtly using “AIDS” and “death” as another reason why being gay is bad without sounding like a fucking ass-hole by actually saying it? She probably thinks AIDS is only a gay disease.

Were you close to him though? My reason for questioning is that, I think you may look at some things differently if you loved someone and wanted the best for them, along with equality...heterosexual or homosexual.

Phyllis Steene-
But I'm not debating the equality of it, I'm truly debating the terminology of it.

Here comes some more awesome…

Phyllis, what a bunch of self-aggrandizing baloney. "Doing what feels right at the time" - some people call that THINKING with their BRAINS and being willing to change when new information becomes available. Willy-nilly? Absurd.

You can disagree all you want about whether homosexuality is inborn or not, the fact of the matter is that it is inborn, whether you like it or not. Just ask my daughter, who has known since before she was even in puberty what her inclinations were and had the courage to be honest about it. Sex addicts?!! Where on earth does that come from? What makes you think it is all about sex? Is YOUR marriage all about the sex? It's common for those with an innate bigotry toward homosexuality to be hyper-focused on the sexual part of it rather than the love that exists as with any relationship.

Agree to disagree? No. See, Phyllis, you are definitely entitled to your own opinions, but you are NOT entitled to make up your own FACTS. If you want to believe in a bunch of bull that makes you feel cozy inside and pretend that reality doesn't exist, that's your choice. But if you try to say it's anything other than what it really is, I'm gonna call you out.

There is nothing pious and ethical about willful ignorance.
If the tables were turned, and the society norm was to be gay, could YOU change your sexuality?

Think about it.

Phyllis Steene-
Elaine, you’re putting too much into what I'm saying since it's a personal thing for you. I'm sure you know that they have never proven medically that homosexuality is "inborn". Nor can they disprove it.

By sex addicts, I mean the folks who are gay one minute, straight the next. Does their "inborn" trait fluctuate? I'm not saying every and all, which is what YOU keep alluding too.

I'm certainly not ignorant about the topic. What you perceive as reality and what I perceive as reality are two different things.

Holy shit, every word of that was stupid.

Elaine- I applaud you for raising your daughter in a loving home so she felt comfortable telling you. Every homosexual person that I know says that they knew they were gay from a very young age.

Phyllis- I can appreciate your passion for your convictions, but I don't think it is true to state that if you don't have a biblical perspective that you live according to what feels right at the time. I am an atheist, but I have a strong set of convictions and morals. They may not be based in the bible, but who says the bible is the gold standard? It is for you, but there are millions and millions of non-Christians in the world too.

More awesome…

It was a personal thing for me long before I ever had children, simply because I am a member of a group called the Human Race that is all in this together.

Yes, as a matter of fact they Have proven that it is inborn. The Human Genome Project is an amazing thing.

Someone who is "gay one minute, straight the next" is not a "sex addict". A sex addict is a person who compulsively has sex, does not want to be constantly having sex, but cannot stop same as some with OCD cannot stop counting ceiling tiles or washing their hands over and over. In fact, the same medicines that help other forms of OCD often help sex addicts. Someone who is "gay one minute, straight the next" could be BISEXUAL (they are attracted to both sexes...because sexuality is really more of a continuum than an either/or thing anyway) or they are gay and trying very hard to fake being straight in the hopes that they can somehow make it work for them so they don't have to spend their lives struggling against this sort of ignorant garbage and can just get on with living their lives. There are other reasons why this can appear to the outside, casual, non-sympathetic observer to be the case, but I have my doubts that you really actually want to learn anything about it anyway. You just want to keep things simple and easy for yourself, regardless of whether that's reality or not.

Phyllis Steene-
Shirley, Convictions/Moral codes of conduct come from somewhere. While you are laying no claim to any religion, I'm sure some of your convictions can be traced back to a biblical reference. Ex. The Golden Rule, many people follow that, Christian and non-Christian alike. Someone growing up in a non-religious home may say..My grandma said that all time etc. but the golden rule is a religious reference.

That was the first one that popped in my head that many non-Christians have stated and had no idea it was from the bible. :)

Elaine, big into psychology?

I love facts…

Phyllis: good grief but you are knee-deep in dogma. I can't believe you just outright said that all morality comes from the Bible. LOL.

Tell that to all the ethical folks in the world who are Hindu or Buddhist or Muslim or Tao.

The "golden rule" existed before the Bible was written. Long before. It existed in Roman and Greek Law, and in ancient Egypt as well.

And Phyllis: I'm big into LEARNING. About everything. And comparing one source against another to look for inconsistencies. It's a hobby.

I agree that the bible has good stuff in it, and since we live in a predominantly Christian society I am sure that it has rubbed off on me. :). I just don't think it is fair to say that if you aren't viewing the world from a biblical perspective you are only doing what feels good right now. I am not religious, but I am a good person.

Phyllis Steene-
emphasized that the findings of his study should not be interpreted as 'medicalizing' homosexuality. Sexual preference should be viewed, he insisted, as a behavioral variable, and the studies he and others have reported as studies of the genetic influence.

Taken from the Human Genome Project.

Oh Phyllis. Of course he added that. He has conservative monetary sponsorship to consider.

Regardless of what any heterosexual says about what makes a person gay, every gay person says they were born that way. Are they all lying just to cover up some sinister ulterior gay motive?

Actually, conservative Republican homosexuals say it’s a learned behavior and take classes to pray the gay away. I also will broach the bullshit that goes with trying to fit into an intolerant, religious, conservative organization in a later post.

Go Mary! From the Dykes down South. ;-)

PS- my 80 year old Christian grandmother is totally cool with gay marriage. Go Nanny!

Bill Mancuso-
1828? We're basing information on the "up-to-date" knowledge of 1828? OK, then... let's do this. Nothing any of you women say matters because you're just property. And you can't vote. Blacks (African-Americans for you PC impaired) are also property (and only considered 3/5 of a person) and can't vote. And then there's Christianity. In order to not be a hypocrite by outright proclaiming all organized religions to be mental slavery, I’ve done a bit of research on many of them. Here are some highlights from the Bible. Keep in mind most of the tenets are stolen from other religions from the preceding few thousand years - which then morphed into the next group of religions of the next couple thousand years. The Bible was written when they thought the world was flat. Masturbation is a sin because you can't waste the limited amount of baby batter in the balls. Can't eat fish on Fri because it spoiled from when you bought it at the market on Mon - I wonder if they’ll ever invent something to prevent the spoilage? Circular logic of an eye for an eye/turn the other cheek. Leviticus 1:9 - God apparently loves the smell of a good barbeque. Exodus 21 - a whole chapter on selling people into slavery - too bad I don’t have a daughter, I could get some primo bucks if I sold her to a neighboring nation. Exodus 35:2 - gee, I hope nobody finds out I’ve worked on a Sunday, God’s day (or is it Saturday – I don’t know, they still debate over it), because “whosoever doeth work therein shall be put to death.” Leviticus 11:10 - Any lobster lovers out there? Shellfish, apparently, are an abomination. Leviticus 19:27 - I hope no men cut their hair short or trim their beards. Why? I don’t know. Just don’t. Maybe just to prove you’re not a lowly woman but a manly man. Leviticus 11:1-8 - Things you can eat: cows, bulls. Things you can’t eat: coneys (?), rabbits, pigs. Welcome to Chez Lord. Leviticus 19:19 - whatever you do, do not plant different vegetables in the same garden or wear clothes made of a blend of materials. Leviticus 24:14 - technically, when I say “God Damnit” everyone that hears me is obligated to stone me to death. Genesis 19:32 - if there aren’t any good men around, it is seemingly OK to get your father wasted and bang him. And I learned this from Mike Huckabee, the ex Governor of Arkansas (R) - the reason gays can’t get married is because being gay is a CHOICE and they are CHOOSING to live in sin - it isn’t naturally occurring. And if we let them get married, that opens the door to letting people marry goats. Uh, right. And for your information, God didn’t institute marriage between a man and a woman to prevent promiscuity. 200 years ago (seriously, you had to go back 200 years to find a definition that fits your bigotry), Webster changed the lexicography from previous definitions to fit the status quo. Now, most dictionaries have made the definition gender-neutral to fit the status quo. 200 years from now, they’re going to change it again to fit the status quo. And so on. God didn’t institute anything. Man says it’s what God said because it’s what Man wants to happen. Fear of a Vengeful God and all that. Which boils down to fear of the unknown. By the way, Gay Agenda? It’s hilarious when Christians make things up to further their own agenda. Like “partial-birth abortion.” It’s not a term found in any medical tome. They invented it to make it sound sinister. Stop trying to impede progress and get everyone to do what YOU want. Mind your own business. Do unto others - you know the rest. Peace, out!

Bill!!! How are you? Well said!

Bill, #1-where the HELL were you three hours ago? and #2-I think I just fell in love with you

Bill - OMG I LOVE YOU. :)

Shirley- my 70-ish Christian in-laws love their granddaughter and fully support her right to marry whoever she chooses. :)

Mary - thanks for being an open forum today. :)

You guys should rent "Religulous" if you haven't seen it yet.

Bill Mancuso-
I was typing 3 hrs ago. I forgot to mention that people who profess marriage to be a union between a man and a woman always conveniently forget polygyny, polyandry, fraternal polyandry, concubines, and paramours. All defined forms of marriage - If we're just going by definitions.

Religulous is brilliant AND not done in a condescending way.

Phyllis Steene-
Bill, you bring up a good point. Let's allow polygyny, and polyandry. Why should they be discriminated against?

Bill Mancuso-
Phyllis- Of all the hypocrisy and double-speak I pointed out about organized religion, (and outdated, centuries-old ideals) the one thing you got out of it is that you think I'm an advocate for multiple marriages? I'll be crystal, here - hopefully you see past the blinders you're wearing - You said the definition of marriage is that of one between a man and a woman. I was pointing out that there are several accepted definitions of marriage and you chose the one that fits your idea of what it should be - or at least what you were told by your religion of what it should be. Which happens to be different from what other religions say it should be. All hypocrites - living so high up on their morally superior soapboxes that they can't see what's really going on about them down below the clouds.

Phyllis Steene-
Ps..I truly hope I did not come off condescending to anyone here. I was simply stating my views, which b/c I have a Christian view were viewed as ignorant, refusing to accept reality, self-aggrandizing and more.

The debate wasn't about homosexuality, which it seems like it kept coming back too.

Yes. Yes, it was.

Mary, am I the ONLY conservative friend you have?? LOL.

I wouldn't portray yourself as a victim. I think you did a pretty good job of stereotyping homosexuals and non-Christians. As far as I can tell you think that I am a heathen that runs around only worrying about what feels good now. :)

I'm not normally a jerk, I am crabby about another situation and this discussion got under my skin, and it bothers me when my personal convictions are attacked.

Wow, I read the whole string. I'm glad that there are some sensible straight people in this country. If I were in a position to vote on your rights and decide whether I knew better than you do about your "lifestyle," you could count on me to do the right thing. Now, if you'll excuse me, I have to go back to having sex with the first man or woman I see, because I'm a sex addict, and then maybe I'll do to some children whatever it is that I do to children. I'll have to look that one up. Wow, this really feels good right now!

Jeff- you are a sinner!

In excellent company, apparently!

Holy (pun intended) Moly! Great string of posts! Bill, you really nailed it...nice job! It took me a while to get through all the posts, but it was very entertaining. It is amazing how some religions brainwash people to discriminate against people without them realizing it or even acknowledging it. Thanks Mary for starting all this shit!

I'm with you about Bill nailing it! I bow down to him :)

It's not always easy being a liberal, non-believer vegetarian living in TX. I get tired of being stomped on by the religious right, and that combined with dealing with my stupid mortgage company today made me a bit feisty!

Shirley- you're an amazing person...and I would still feel the same about you if you were conservative, or gay, or purple or anything else than what you are. I also believe your standards and your morals are much higher than many, MANY Christians in the world :)

Phyllis- No matter how different our beliefs are, you are my friend, and I will always love you! I will never agree with you, but I also know that your heart is in the right place and you'd give me, or anyone for that matter, the shirt off your back if needed. You are kind and you are sweet, and you would never hurt a fly. xo

And Elaine....thank you for all your input. I always love your views and your knowledge.

Now can ya'll get off my freaking page!?!? haha-KIDDING!

Bill Mancuso-
Shirley- Hi! Yeah, I know what it's like to be surrounded and outnumbered. I could throw one baseball and break windows on 5 different churches. However, I don't follow any political party just as I don't follow any religion. I'm more of what you would call a Freethinker. Google it. And you don't have to apologize for standing up against ignorance.

Bob, Mary - Thanks, I try.

This has been fun. What'll we tackle next?

In closing...

"The word God is for me nothing more than the expression and product of human weaknesses, the Bible a collection of honorable but still primitive legends which are nevertheless pretty childish."

-Albert Einstein

PS- Getting back to Mary's original post, here's also part of what happened in Maine (as it does everywhere else): Every 4 years, the big presidential vote happens, and that's when the most people vote, so new things happen. Then, 2 years later, the little local mid-term votey things happen and only the senior citizens come out to vote - because when they were young, it was a patriotic duty to vote and they ALWAYS vote. And since their brains are still living in the segregated water fountains era, they undo all the progress that happened two years ago and the cycle continues. And will continue until 1 of 2 things happen: 1) more people vote more often or 2) the senior citizens die off. OR - the Mayans are right and everything starts over on 12/21/12. Hey, of all the millions of prophesies that came and went, ONE of them has to at least ACCIDENTALLY be correct. Does everyone have their Y2K+12+355 survival kits ready?


Philistine by Webster’s New World Dictionary 1983: PHIL*IS*TINE (fil’is tēn’, -stīn) n. 1. Any of a non-Semitic people of SW Palestine in Biblical times 2. [often p-] an anti-intellectual: smugly conventional, narrow-minded and ignorant and indifferent or hostile to artistic and cultural values; lacking culture, etc.

No comments:

Post a Comment