Skip to comments.Hawaii gov. calls special session on gay marriage
Posted on 09/09/2013 7:25:08 PM PDT by Olog-hai
Gov. Neil Abercrombie on Monday called for a special legislative session to move forward on a bill that would legalize gay marriage.
If lawmakers pass a bill, Hawaii would join 13 U.S. states and the District of Columbia in allowing gay marriage. The special session is scheduled to begin Oct. 28.
The bill is the culmination of 20 years of discussion, Abercrombie told reporters during a news conference at the Hawaii Capitol.
Abercrombie acknowledged that some people will be against the bill because they disagree with the concept of gay marriage, but he said it includes provisionsincluding a religious exemptionto protect First Amendment rights.
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Yes, Hawaii was the impetus to enact DOMA. They were seriously talking about it back then.
Indeed - it was 1993 when Hawaii’s state Supreme Court ruled that denying licenses to gay couples was discriminatory.
The issue seems like it’s only a couple years old, but they’ve been actively working in it for *decades*.
WE have seen in England that the religious exemption is not worth diddly to the homos - once they have the legislation passed they will go after the exemption in court saying it is discriminatory.
The exemption is in fact illusory. It says churches may restrict marriages to opposite sex couples, but only if their church only marries church members to each other and they do not allow the public to use their facilities or attend their services. (I.e., they are the equivalent of a closed private club.)
Well I have always thought that marriage in a church should require membership but as to attend their services that is a nonsense - a solution could be to have a visitors book like any “club” although I can see that being a bit of a stumbling block!
Forced celebration of sodomy.
And this nation isn’t going to hell? Who wants to assert that nonsense anymore?
Old Yellowfangs doin’ his liberal thang once again.
“Dreams come true.....in blue (state) Hawaii....”
We should apologize to the Japanese for shooting down twenty-nine of their aircraft on December 7, 1941.
All this tyranny has never been about “love” but all about persecution of the Christian church. Somehow, the Mohammedans will be left alone.
Does the law spell it out that specifically? How can a church acquire members unless visitors can come and decide if they want to join?
England had a provision too, how long did that last before it was in court?
it’s not like it is illegal to change churches
Not yet, anyway. However, people who leave one church to join another will still have to visit first before they can join.
nobody is going to be stopped from visiting
You can bet the farm on it. What can be "granted" can be rescinded. An orthodox Jew said it best during the NY marriage law debate a couple of years ago - "The road to Hell is paved with religious exemptions."
Let the 1st Amendment be all the "religious exemption" we need.
“England had a provision too”
What England *doesn’t* have is freedom of religion. You can’t extrapolate to what will happen here.
This is why a state religion is such a bad idea - the state eventually starts dictating terms.
As long as the churches don’t rent their property to the public, are they safe? I’m not Roman Catholic but I assume all Roman Catholic churches limit their facilities for wedding use to Roman Catholic weddings only which by definition would only be 1 man to 1 woman.
Yep, that’s my reading of it.
The language could be more clear, though, which will undoubtedly encourage all the lawyers.
The key, first, is that it purports to give limited protection to ministers and churches, so long as they marry *only* their own members (think about it, that means if you go to the church, the only women you can legally marry in a ceremony in your church are those in your own congregation, which to me seems to be a problem in itself).
But the kicker is that none of the so-called protections apply if your church is deemed to be a “public accommodation.” Public accommodation is defined very broadly in Hawaii, there is no restriction to being a business or charging money. So long as you invite members of the public to use your facilities (even if you don’t charge them anything) you are a public accommodation. So the Attorney General and Civil Rights Commission have already testified before the Legislature that if a church invites the public to its services or advertises things like Christmas or Easter services, that makes them a public accommodation. The testimony has been that if the churches want protection, they must become the equivalent of “members only” private clubs.
Here’s the definition of public accommodation in Hawaii:
“’Place of public accommodation’ means a business,
accommodation, refreshment, entertainment, recreation, or transportation facility of any kind whose goods, services, facilities, privileges, advantages, or accommodations are extended, offered, sold, or otherwise made available to the general public as customers, clients, or visitors.” (HRS section 489-2)
You will see there is no restriction to commercial activities, or money being charged. If you allow members of the public to attend your church, you fall under the law, and then cannot discriminate on the basis of sexual orientation, etc.
Obviously big First Amendment problems, but that is where it is at in Hawaii. There is already a case pending in the Civil Rights Commission (has been pending 3 years without decision) as to whether the Roman Catholic Church must allow same-sex ceremonies in one of its chapels that it allowed the public to come pray in. http://www.usccb.org/issues-and-action/religious-liberty/upload/Same-Sex-Marriage-Fact-Sheet-Updated.pdf (Just as another example, think of all the old Spanish mission churches in California that are kept open for people to pray in or tourists to walk through. In Hawaii, if you let people see your church like that, arguably you would have to allow them to have same-sex ceremonies there.)