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Gay unions accepted as routine in cultures for centuries
Salt Lake City Tribune ^ | Feb 29, 2004 | Will Bagley

Posted on 03/01/2004 12:46:27 PM PST by george wythe

Marriage, says BYU law professor Richard G. Wilkins, "has always been about one sexual relationship -- the union of a man and a woman." Of course, this would be news to Brigham Young, who said "I do" to some 56 women.

    Consider the furor and outrage Mormon polygamy evoked in the 19th century.

    The laws sanctifying the one-man, one-woman model of marriage had forced millions upon millions of women "to become a prey to man's lust and a consuming sacrifice upon the altar of illicit passion," the Deseret Evening News thundered in December 1885.

    "One man to one woman only," the newspaper proclaimed, was "the exception in Christendom as well as heathendom" and was "one impracticable standard."

    The News argued that polygamous marriage "prevails all over the world, and those who pretend to the contrary are very simple or very untruthful." That's a debatable point, even though it appeared in the pages of what The Salt Lake Tribune used to call "the font of truth," but marriage has been a flexible institution throughout history.

    Much of the current debate over same-sex marriage reflects a relatively new tradition of fear and hatred of homosexuals in American culture. The concept of homosexuality only appeared in European medical literature in the late 1860s and reached the United States by 1892, but it was the sodomy trial of British poet Oscar Wilde in 1895 that introduced the concept to popular culture.

The "queer eye" was nothing new, however, even in Utah.

    When Wilde (popularly known as the "Sunflower Apostle") visited Salt Lake City in 1882, he complimented LDS Church President John Taylor for his fine aesthetic judgment, and the Deseret News reported that young men adorned with enormous sunflowers filled the front row of his crowded lecture on interior decorating. (None of this was a stereotype in 1882.)

    The Victorians turned it into an identity, but same-sex sex has been going on since time immemorial and was considered entirely natural in ancient Greece and Rome.

    First Lord of the Admiralty Winston Churchill didn't actually say "the only traditions of the Royal Navy are rum, sodomy and the lash," but he may have wished he had.

    Rather than treat gay people as social outcasts, many cultures integrated men and women with transsexual natures into their societies. When French Jesuit missionaries found men among the Iroquois who dressed and acted as women, they called them berdache, incorrectly equating them with male prostitutes.

    Many scholars now prefer the term "two-spirit." American Indian languages had a variety of terms -- winkte (Lakota), nadleeh (Navajo), hemanah (Cheyenne), kwid-(Tewa), tainna wa'ippe (Shoshone), dubuds (Paiute) and lhamana (Zuni) to identify "a person who has both male and female spirits within," notes Lakota scholar Beatrice Medicine.

    Anthropologists such as Elsie Parsons long ago observed that two-spirited men often married other men. Even earlier, William Clark told the first editor of the Lewis and Clark journals that Hidatsa boys who showed "girlish inclinations" were raised as women and married men.

    Somehow, male-female marriage managed to survive in these cultures. Marriage even survived polygamy, which had extended the "blessings of matrimony and of home instead of discarding or destroying them," the Deseret News argued. "It surrounds the domestic relations with safeguards and a sacredness that are stronger and more enduring than any others."

    Restricting such a good thing seems selfish.

Historian Will Bagley is happily married.


TOPICS: Editorial; US: Utah
KEYWORDS: anthropology; byu; civilunion; homosexualagenda; marriage; polygamy; samesexmarriage; subversives
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1 posted on 03/01/2004 12:46:27 PM PST by george wythe
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To: george wythe
The Victorians turned it into an identity, but same-sex sex has been going on since time immemorial and was considered entirely natural in ancient Greece and Rome.

Yes, and where are those cultures now? Can anyone say "decline?"

2 posted on 03/01/2004 12:50:08 PM PST by StarCMC (God protect the 969th in Iraq and their Captain, my brother...God protect them all!)
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To: george wythe
"Many cultures"? And they all seem to be Amerindians. Which is to say, stone age peoples.

Yeah, we should be like that.

3 posted on 03/01/2004 12:54:04 PM PST by ClearCase_guy (You can see it coming like a train on a track.)
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To: george wythe
This guy is deliberately misreading Richard Wilkins. Even polygamous marriages are about the sexual union of man and woman.
4 posted on 03/01/2004 12:54:17 PM PST by lady lawyer
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To: george wythe
The Greco-Roman culture viewed same-sex relations much the same way that we today do heavy drinking - something to laugh at from abroad, but hardly something to actively promote. It never once occurred to them to marry a man to a man or a woman to a woman because it was understood that marriage was an institution designed for heterosexuals.

I also very much doubt that many ancient cultures that tolerated homosexuality had anything resembling that the rather peculiar subculture that has grown up in the last 100 years or so that we today refer to as "gay." Even in Greco-Roman times it was understood that those who engaged in such relations would eventually go on into heterosexual relationship and marriages.
5 posted on 03/01/2004 12:54:19 PM PST by Angelus Errare
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To: george wythe

We're mainstream!
Really!


6 posted on 03/01/2004 12:56:14 PM PST by billorites (freepo ergo sum)
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To: george wythe
American Indian languages had a variety of terms -- winkte (Lakota)

Winkte?

I don't think one needs to be a Lakota Sioux to understand that that term sounds pretty gay.

7 posted on 03/01/2004 12:57:42 PM PST by Michael.SF. ('After all, Jesus was born to a homeless couple' - Hillary Clinton (paraphrased))
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To: StarCMC
Yes, and where are those cultures now? Can anyone say "decline?"

Unfortunately for the "homosexuality caused the decline" of these cultures theory, the greatest popularity of homosexuality coincided quite nicely with the greatest period for each. Their decline actually concided with a return to more "traditional" morality.

Personally, I can find lots of other, entirely historical reasons for being opposed to these practices.

8 posted on 03/01/2004 12:57:43 PM PST by Restorer
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Since it's been a while since I took any anthropology class, I googled the term "berdache" and found this picture:

It comes from this article:

Over 130 different Native American tribes had a special category of men who wore women's clothing, spent their time doing "women's work" such as basket weaving and pottery, and held a sacred, spiritual role in the tribe. Berdaches had sex with other men, and marriages between a berdache and another man were common. Sometimes in a polygamous marriage, a berdache became a secondary "wife" to a male who was already married to one or more women.
American Heritage Dictionary defines berdache:
Among certain Native American peoples, a person, usually a male, who assumes the gender identity and is granted the social status of the opposite sex.

9 posted on 03/01/2004 12:58:12 PM PST by george wythe
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To: george wythe
You mean after all this time we now know it wasn't the white man's fault! The Indians screwed themselves?
10 posted on 03/01/2004 1:01:52 PM PST by whereasandsoforth (tagged for migratory purposes only)
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To: Angelus Errare
Even in Greco-Roman times it was understood that those who engaged in such relations would eventually go on into heterosexual relationship and marriages

Just like the Arabs?

I've read many reports from Westerners about homosexual sex being common in Arab countries, but men always end up getting married in order to continue the family name.

11 posted on 03/01/2004 1:02:12 PM PST by george wythe
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To: Restorer
Sorry - don't buy it. It takes a while for those things to affect the standing of the country. Doesn't happen overnight.
12 posted on 03/01/2004 1:02:26 PM PST by StarCMC (God protect the 969th in Iraq and their Captain, my brother...God protect them all!)
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To: george wythe
First Lord of the Admiralty Winston Churchill didn't actually say "the only traditions of the Royal Navy are rum, sodomy and the lash," but he may have wished he had. What is that doing in the middle of this poorly-written piece? Bizarre. This author wrote this late at night after 3 glasses of merlot.
13 posted on 03/01/2004 1:03:14 PM PST by Theo
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To: billorites
hy is this called hate speech. It offends Catholics
14 posted on 03/01/2004 1:04:22 PM PST by FlatLandBeer
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To: george wythe
"Historian Will Bagley is happily 'married'."

To what?


15 posted on 03/01/2004 1:05:27 PM PST by Redcoat LI ("If you're going to shoot,shoot,don't talk" Tuco BenedictoPacifico Juan Maria Ramirez)
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To: lady lawyer
Even polygamous marriages are about the sexual union of man and woman.

Do you happen to know what happened to Brigham Young's marriages according to Mormon theology after he died?

Is Brigham Young still in a polygamist marriage to his 56 wives, or is he united to only one of them in the Mormon afterlife?

16 posted on 03/01/2004 1:07:32 PM PST by george wythe
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To: george wythe
It is false that the ancient Greeks considered homos "normal." Man/boy relationships were certainly more complex than today but when a man refused marriage and children and became the passive partner in homo relations, they were scourned, ridiculed or worse. That role was acceptable for a boy but not a man.

Read what Plato said about such relations in "The Laws" it ain't pleasant. Much of the homo relations refered to in Greece were not of the carnal nature hence the term "platonic." In addition, any sexual relations were not of the type favored by modern queers.
17 posted on 03/01/2004 1:07:50 PM PST by justshutupandtakeit (America's Enemies foreign and domestic agree: Bush must be destroyed.)
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To: george wythe
...Historian Will Bagley is happily married.

To whom? Or should I say to what? A man? A goat? A (gasp) woman?

As a happily married woman whose husband happens to be a MAN, I think the idea of polygamy stinks. It seemed to cause a lot more problems in the Old Testament and is still causing more than a few in this day and age. If homosexuals are allowed to marry, polygamists wanting their right to the pursuit of happiness can't be far behind. What's to stop this from happening? Ugh.

I'm sure a few FReeper guys think this might be a great idea. Think again, guys. Each of your wives will have their very own charge accounts and will play a game of musical PMS every month. :)

18 posted on 03/01/2004 1:08:09 PM PST by demnomo
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To: george wythe
I'm uncertain - certainly a number of younger al-Qaeda jihadis have turned out to have been molested by their superiors in the Afghan camps and a number of the Pakistani madrassa chiefs are evidently pedophiles, but I'm wary about judging cultural attitudes on a particular subject on the basis of members of a terrorist organization.

I do know from my own reading that the Qur'an that homosexual relations are condemned there in no uncertain terms as well as that all Muslim countries maintain anti-sodomy laws. The Malaysian deputy prime minister was actually sacked on the trumped-up allegation that he engaged in such practices. But no honest clue as to just how common these things are.
19 posted on 03/01/2004 1:08:15 PM PST by Angelus Errare
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To: demnomo
To whom? Or should I say to what? A man? A goat? A (gasp) woman?

LOL! All I know is that he lives in Utah.

Which kind of marriages are common in Utah?

20 posted on 03/01/2004 1:10:44 PM PST by george wythe
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To: george wythe
Gay unions accepted as routine in cultures for centuries

Yeah suuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuure

< /sarcasm >

21 posted on 03/01/2004 1:11:31 PM PST by Kaslin
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To: All
This issue depends on what some of your core beliefs are.

In the issue of homosexuality, answer the following question: Do you believe homosexuality is a "choice" or is it the way someone is "hard-wired" to be.

In my opinion, I have seen way to much suffering from homosexuals to believe it's a choice. Why would someone choose a homosexual lifestyle, knowing the incredible array of problems facing them?

Here's an example, when I was in the military, I was temporarily assigned to a hospital. There was a retired serviceman who was dying, his partner of over 20 years could not be with him, as visitation was permitted to "family" members only. Since they couldn't be married, his life-partner couldn't be with him during the last few days of his life. Could you imagine that? Not being with your wife or husband in the same situation because you weren't recongnized as a family?

It just doesn't make sense. Additionally, there have been numerous anthropology studies where some animals and birds have formed homosexual relationships. How could they "choose" that?

This issue is more about money, then it is morality.

For example, If homosexuals are granted the same status as heterosexual couples, the federal and state governments would have an immediate expense increase for health care benefits, etc. The same coverage that now applies to heterosexual couples would be mandated for homosexual couples and they don't want the added expense.

I believe like prohabition and sufferage rights, sooner or later homosexuals will enjoy the same benefits as heterosexuals, so why not sooner then later?
22 posted on 03/01/2004 1:11:52 PM PST by OhhTee5
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To: george wythe
Not sure about the Mormon afterlife being a Catholic myself, but my understanding is that mainstream LDS church believes that polygamy is not inherently sinful but rather that they should obey the laws of the land on this particular issue.
23 posted on 03/01/2004 1:12:07 PM PST by Angelus Errare
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To: little jeremiah
Ping


What We Can Do To Help Defeat the "Gay" Agenda


Homosexual Agenda: Categorical Index of Links (Version 1.1)


The Stamp of Normality

24 posted on 03/01/2004 1:14:07 PM PST by EdReform (Support Free Republic - All donations are greatly appreciated. Thank you for your support!)
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To: george wythe
" Many scholars now prefer the term "two-spirit." American Indian languages had a variety of terms -- winkte (Lakota), nadleeh (Navajo), hemanah (Cheyenne), kwid-(Tewa), tainna wa'ippe (Shoshone), dubuds (Paiute) and lhamana (Zuni) to identify "a person who has both male and female spirits within," notes Lakota scholar Beatrice Medicine."

That's nice. Not our culture.
25 posted on 03/01/2004 1:17:58 PM PST by OpusatFR (Moby? What is that? An ugly white whale or a talentless singing hack?)
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To: OhhTee5
I think you're setting up a straw man argument here.

The fact that it isn't an innate biological function doesn't necessarily make it a conscious function. I'm not too comfortable with this whole issue of biological determinism for complex behaviors myself. A unique mixture of psychological, developmental, and maybe even biological stuff sounds far more plausible to me.

I also don't think that giving homosexuals marriage is the only way to address the type of issue that you bring up there.

Another thing you might want to consider as to why so many people are pissed about this turn of events is that the gay lobby has decided to take a collective dump on the faces of many Americans because too many of us aren't right-thinking enough. This is an important arena of public policy and they want to conduct the discussion without actually getting the public involved. More to the point, there is little if any reason as to imagine that efforts to redefine our society by going over the beliefs of the people would stop here.
26 posted on 03/01/2004 1:20:11 PM PST by Angelus Errare
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To: Angelus Errare
I'm uncertain

Thanks for your honest response.

I was thinking about comments I've read on this site. For instance, look at this thread where Arabs were ridiculed for their alleged inclination toward homosexual sex.

27 posted on 03/01/2004 1:20:33 PM PST by george wythe
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To: george wythe
I've read many reports from Westerners about homosexual sex being common in Arab countries, but men always end up getting married in order to continue the family name.

The whole idea that most men who engage in homosexual activity are primarily or exclusively homosexual in "orientation" is a remarkably modern theory. For most of history it was generally accepted that any moral concern about such practices was mostly with whether one was the "penetrator" or the "penetrated." The first did not make one a homosexual or an object of contempt, the second most definitely did.

Don't agree with this, but it is historically quite true. Still applies today in the special subculture in our prisons.

28 posted on 03/01/2004 1:20:43 PM PST by Restorer
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To: george wythe
Bestiality has been going on since the beginning.

Pedophilia has been going on since the beginning.

Rape has been going on since the beginning.

Murder has been going on since the beginning.

Just because people have chosen to be perverted and hateful since the beginning doesn't mean we should legalize it.

29 posted on 03/01/2004 1:23:32 PM PST by MEGoody
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To: Angelus Errare; george wythe
Homosexuality & Same-Sex "Marriage" (Ancient Roman Satirist Slams Gays)
30 posted on 03/01/2004 1:25:43 PM PST by EdReform (Support Free Republic - All donations are greatly appreciated. Thank you for your support!)
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To: OhhTee5
The only problem with your theory is that it applies equally well to any other variety of perversion.

Why would anyone "choose" to be a pedophile, knowing the incredible hostility society (for now) holds towards them? If nobody would choose it voluntarily, then the desire to have sex with children must be inborn. If inborn, it is inherently wrong to punish or condemn them for their actions.

The same would apply to those who derive sexual pleasure from dominating, torturing or killing others, not to mention those who prefer sex with animals or corpses.

The theory is inherently unsound.
31 posted on 03/01/2004 1:27:08 PM PST by Restorer
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To: OhhTee5
I believe like prohabition and sufferage rights, sooner or later homosexuals will enjoy the same benefits as heterosexuals, so why not sooner then later?

If I were a betting man, I would bet good money that your prediction is correct.

I don't see how Massachusetts can be stopped, so gay marriages will become a reality on May 2004.

There is talk about a Constitutional Marriage Amendment, but it's just that, talk.

To break the filibuster on conservative judges, the US Senate only needed 60 votes, but the Republicans could not deliver.

To pass a constitutional amendment, the US Senate needs 67 votes, very unlikely in my humble opinion.

At present, I don't even see a 2/3 majority in the House for Constitutional Marriage Amendment either.

32 posted on 03/01/2004 1:28:36 PM PST by george wythe
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To: OhhTee5
"Why would someone choose a homosexual lifestyle, knowing the incredible array of problems facing them?"

Why would someone choose a lifestyle of pedophilia, knowing the incredible array of problems facing them?

Why would someone choose adultery, knowing the incredible array of problems facing them?

Why would someone choose bestiality, knowing the incredible array of problems facing them?

Why would someone choose to become a drug addict, knowing the incredible array of problems facing them?

Why would someone choose to become an alcoholic, knowing the incredible array of problems facing them?

You get the point.

33 posted on 03/01/2004 1:29:11 PM PST by MEGoody
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To: george wythe
I've seen such comments as well on this and in other forums, but here again I'm uncertain as to whether or not they have any basis in fact or are simply a symptom of wartime perception of the enemy.
34 posted on 03/01/2004 1:29:36 PM PST by Angelus Errare
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To: MEGoody
Just because people have chosen to be perverted and hateful since the beginning doesn't mean we should legalize it.

Absolutely correct.

Nevertheless, the editorial seems to be addressing only the "Human history or tradition is on our side" argument against gay unions.

35 posted on 03/01/2004 1:31:06 PM PST by george wythe
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To: george wythe
"Among certain Native American peoples, a person, usually a male, who assumes the gender identity and is granted the social status of the opposite sex"

This just proves that native americans were not immune to mental illneses.

It is also not clear that just because a male would assume the duties of a woman, or even "marry" a man, that that relationship included sex. Sometimes it was a sign of shame for cowardess or another infraction.
36 posted on 03/01/2004 1:31:25 PM PST by BadAndy (It's the activists who change society. Conservatives must become activists.)
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To: Restorer
Why Judaism Rejected Homosexuality
37 posted on 03/01/2004 1:33:08 PM PST by onedoug
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To: Restorer
All homosexual men are built for heterosexual sex, all of them.

What they do with each other is abnormal and against nature.

No amount of mental gymnastics will change that.

38 posted on 03/01/2004 1:33:29 PM PST by Jimmyclyde (Dying ain't much of a living boy...)
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To: MEGoody
Why would someone choose to become an liberal, knowing the incredible array of problems facing them?
39 posted on 03/01/2004 1:35:36 PM PST by Jimmyclyde (Dying ain't much of a living boy...)
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To: Restorer
For most of history it was generally accepted that any moral concern about such practices was mostly with whether one was the "penetrator" or the "penetrated." The first did not make one a homosexual or an object of contempt, the second most definitely did.

If I recall correctly, the Mexicans make also that distinction.

Please correct me if I'm wrong, but I tend to infer the following meaning to these Mexican slang words:

Buga Straight

Bugarrón Mostly straight, but sometimes has gay sex as a "top"

Maricón Mostly homosexual, especially a "bottom"


40 posted on 03/01/2004 1:38:20 PM PST by george wythe
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To: george wythe
Wow, the SLC Tribune got to kill three birds with one stone, - Attack Christian values, promote gay marriage, and bash Mormons. The editor must have given this writer an efficiency award. If only he could have worked some radical environmentalism or Bush-bashing into the article...
41 posted on 03/01/2004 1:38:42 PM PST by azcap
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To: george wythe
Actually, a simple majority in each of 2/3 of the state legislatures can call a new constitutional convention. Anybody know the number of states GWB carried as compared to Al Gore in 2000?

Wouldn't that get things into an uproar!

BTW, there is a much faster route for dealing with these threats. Each of the legislatures and Congress can impeach and remove judges for "hich crimes and misdemeanors."

Frankly, I can think of no higher crime for a judge than to abuse his power to promote his political philosophy.
42 posted on 03/01/2004 1:39:01 PM PST by Restorer
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To: Restorer
"High," not "hich."

Sorry.
43 posted on 03/01/2004 1:40:51 PM PST by Restorer
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To: Restorer
there is a much faster route for dealing with these threats. Each of the legislatures and Congress can impeach and remove judges for "hich crimes and misdemeanors

We are in 100% agreement on this. Too bad the majority of people don't care.

Last weekend, I had dinner with several married couples. When the gay marriage issue popped up, everyone was against it. Nevertheless, the majority were supportive of allowing gay unions and against amending the US Constitution.

So unless we change the makeup of the SCOTUS, I don't see any groundswell for amending the US Constitution every time the SCOTUS hands down an activist ruling.

44 posted on 03/01/2004 1:45:31 PM PST by george wythe
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To: OhhTee5
It just doesn't make sense. Additionally, there have been numerous anthropology studies where some animals and birds have formed homosexual relationships. How could they "choose" that?

The issue at hand is whether marriage as a social and legal construct is based on love or on rights of succession.

If it be love, then it is about recreation, not procreation and should be redefined prior to being changed.

Personally, I don't care where anybody places his turgid member as long as it is tasteful.

45 posted on 03/01/2004 1:45:46 PM PST by Old Professer
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To: Angelus Errare
It is like being caught in a current while lazily swimming along in calm waters.
46 posted on 03/01/2004 1:47:08 PM PST by Old Professer
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To: george wythe
I dont trust the source of that article
If I remember correctly the majorty of tribes held such people in contempt as being neither warriors or women, of cource saying that today is not PC
47 posted on 03/01/2004 1:54:49 PM PST by Charlespg
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To: Charlespg
I dont trust the source of that article If I remember correctly the majorty of tribes held such people in contempt as being neither warriors or women, of cource saying that today is not PC

If you find an article supporting your recollection, please post it.

We're here to learn, so different viewpoints are not only welcome but necessary.

Questioning the media is good.

48 posted on 03/01/2004 2:01:37 PM PST by george wythe
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To: george wythe
INTREP - SOCIOLOGY - MARRIAGE - POLYGAMY vs SODOMY
49 posted on 03/01/2004 2:09:27 PM PST by LiteKeeper
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To: *Homosexual Agenda; EdReform; scripter; GrandMoM; backhoe; Yehuda; Clint N. Suhks; saradippity; ...
Homosexual Agenda Ping - Bring Your Own Barf Bag.

A homo-promoter re-writes history. It says he is happily married, I wonder to what??

Let me know if you want on or off this ping list.
50 posted on 03/01/2004 2:09:29 PM PST by little jeremiah (...men of intemperate minds can not be free. Their passions forge their fetters.)
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