Gay and Lesbian Marriage

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Re: Gay and Lesbian Marriage

Unread postby Shikanosuke » Fri Sep 26, 2014 7:09 pm

DreamGoddessLindsey wrote:Both.

This is why I'm a Socialist and will always be. As someone on the bottom, I see personally how horrendous the poor are treated.



Well, with all due respect, I think it is a fairly entitled sense of attitude to say 'the world sucks because it won't give me money'. It implies just being alive entitles to you something for free. In my estimation, in all economic philosophies that is rather uniformly rejected. Also I'd note you should examine how 'socialist' countries treat their underprivileged.

As Marx said "From each according to their abilities, to each according to their needs." I believe in that 1000%. I would never even consider anything else as viable because I feel that people deserve to have a decent standard of living and that no one should be homeless or go hungry.


Well I'm not sure Marx really said that, or originally said that, but you shouldn't 'believe' in that under a capitalist regime as its predicated on the assumption of the existence of a high functioning communist society. As it doesn't exist in the world, its unlikely even Marx would say its applicable.

Just because I'm disabled doesn't mean I should be left and forgotten and abandoned.


It doesn't sound like youre left, forgotten, abandoned. It doesn't sound like you're starving. It sounds like you're in a bad financial jam and you are receiving less than you think you need to live on from the government (a government doing those things you mention wouldn't bother to give you anything).

That is one of the most dramatic evils that could happen, and it's why I despise Republicans.


Well, conservative ideology certainly opposes many forms of government mandated welfare (IIRC they believe society should rely on the goodwill and charity of private actors) both Republicans and Democrats have a) essentially adopted and invested in government welfare and b) neither side is entirely responsible for the current situation.
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Re: Gay and Lesbian Marriage

Unread postby James » Mon Oct 06, 2014 4:44 pm

So the Supreme Court has rejected to hear appeals regarding gay marriage, apparently paving the way for it to be legalized in Indiana, Oklahoma, Utah, Virginia and Wisconsin. And from some other articles, couples in Colorado, Kansas, North Carolina, South Carolina, West Virginia and Wyoming may well soon be able to marry because reasons.

The NPR announcement in particular caught my interest because rather than present it with finality as some of the early articles I have come across have, it adds, "So, sometime in the next few weeks, the high court very likely — though not certainly — will announce which gay-marriage cases it has chosen as test cases for review." So what do we have here? They just haven't decided to hear it yet but may hear it in some capacity soon?

In any case, I would be disappointed if the Supreme Court chose to ignore this one.
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Re: Gay and Lesbian Marriage

Unread postby bodidley » Sun Oct 19, 2014 8:39 pm

DreamGoddessLindsey wrote:What I want done is true equality. I want, as a lesbian, all the same rights straight people have.


It might be that you want true equality, but you're only looking at it through the lens of a political debate that others have put forward for you. Why not think outside the box? Why should two working-age, capable adults be able to file their taxes jointly and get into group insurance plans while someone supporting an 85 year-old parent cannot? Why should the government recognize a secular monogamy but criminalize a Muslim family for polygamy? Is it any of my business, or your business, how other people organize their lives?
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Re: Gay and Lesbian Marriage

Unread postby laojim » Mon Oct 20, 2014 6:08 am

bodidley wrote:
DreamGoddessLindsey wrote:What I want done is true equality. I want, as a lesbian, all the same rights straight people have.


It might be that you want true equality, but you're only looking at it through the lens of a political debate that others have put forward for you. Why not think outside the box? Why should two working-age, capable adults be able to file their taxes jointly and get into group insurance plans while someone supporting an 85 year-old parent cannot? Why should the government recognize a secular monogamy but criminalize a Muslim family for polygamy? Is it any of my business, or your business, how other people organize their lives?


This sort of issue, with the exception of polygamy, which has a history in this country, tends to center on issues that probably never occurred to the drafters of legislation or the organizers of systems. It is, therefore, remarkable how quickly domestic arrangements of the homosexual citizens have gone from being grudgingly recognized to the current situation in which full rights have nearly been granted, leaving only some tidying up of the law. In this state of Arizona the court threw out the law denying marriage rights to same sex couples and the state has now declined to defend it by appealing to a higher court citing the waste of money it would, in all probability be.

Polygamy is tolerated but not officially recognized. This is progress in that some years ago men with more than one wives in various Indian tribes were more or less forced to abandon one of them and they did so officially but not actually and were thereafter left alone. There is a polygamous culture in some areas of Arizona and Utah with some extension into Texas. and the law, while not powerless, is baffled. There have been prosecutions based on the youth of some of these wives having been below the age of consent, which is eighteen. I believe they recognize the first wife as the wife and all other women as single women.
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Re: Gay and Lesbian Marriage

Unread postby bodidley » Mon Oct 20, 2014 9:44 pm

laojim wrote:This sort of issue, with the exception of polygamy, which has a history in this country, tends to center on issues that probably never occurred to the drafters of legislation or the organizers of systems.


That's probably because the drafters of legislation usually aren't thinking about what would make people's lives easier, but are instead thinking about what would make their own lives easier, especially their political careers.
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Re: Gay and Lesbian Marriage

Unread postby FoxWithWings » Thu Nov 13, 2014 5:38 am

I say legalize it, despite the fact that I'm a devout Christian. Marriage's sanctity has been destroyed in the country I live in anyways.
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Re: Gay and Lesbian Marriage

Unread postby DreamGoddessLindsey » Tue Nov 18, 2014 8:30 pm

bodidley wrote:
DreamGoddessLindsey wrote:What I want done is true equality. I want, as a lesbian, all the same rights straight people have.


It might be that you want true equality, but you're only looking at it through the lens of a political debate that others have put forward for you. Why not think outside the box? Why should two working-age, capable adults be able to file their taxes jointly and get into group insurance plans while someone supporting an 85 year-old parent cannot? Why should the government recognize a secular monogamy but criminalize a Muslim family for polygamy? Is it any of my business, or your business, how other people organize their lives?


It's my business because it affects me personally.

I maintain that there are precisely zero legitimate, intelligent arguments against marriage equality. I've certainly never heard one anywhere.
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Re: Gay and Lesbian Marriage

Unread postby Shikanosuke » Wed Nov 19, 2014 12:33 am

DreamGoddessLindsey wrote:
bodidley wrote:
DreamGoddessLindsey wrote:What I want done is true equality. I want, as a lesbian, all the same rights straight people have.


It might be that you want true equality, but you're only looking at it through the lens of a political debate that others have put forward for you. Why not think outside the box? Why should two working-age, capable adults be able to file their taxes jointly and get into group insurance plans while someone supporting an 85 year-old parent cannot? Why should the government recognize a secular monogamy but criminalize a Muslim family for polygamy? Is it any of my business, or your business, how other people organize their lives?


It's my business because it affects me personally.

I maintain that there are precisely zero legitimate, intelligent arguments against marriage equality. I've certainly never heard one anywhere.


We can assume based on the plethora of debate here that this is not true. This is further bolstered by the fact that you've made it known you view the issue as entirely black and white, with no room for discussion. Your statements make it clear you're not genuinely open to any debate on the subject, so acting like you just haven't yet heard the good arguments is disingenuous.
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Re: Gay and Lesbian Marriage

Unread postby WeiWenDi » Wed Feb 04, 2015 11:07 am

Posted over as a response from the religion thread - the discussion was getting a bit OT. This is the part that directly relates to the ethics of gay marriage.

James wrote:All sounds agreeable. I have a feeling that, in the case of many wealthy families, it is just parents expressing their own version of parental interests in the partner their children may end up with. For example, in wanting their child to end up with someone likely to receive a good education, go to college, have a career. While such positions can certainly be misguided they don't seem terribly uncommon. Another form of bias not unlike what I'd be inlined toward if my [fictional] daughter showed up with someone wearing smelly clothes, ear gages, and smelling of marijuana.


All of which is fair enough. When it comes time for my daughter to start having relationships of her own, though, my wife has told me in no uncertain terms that the biggest consideration ought to be her happiness and respect for her partner. Ultimately my wishes and choices for her are secondary. Which, when she becomes an adult, is a fairly good policy to adopt in any event.

James wrote:Funny Monty Python skits aside, it seems you're characterizing it as a 'bogus' argument simply on grounds that you don't agree with it.


No, there actually is a valid philosophical distinction to be made between a couple which is physically and genetically complementary and able to naturally produce a child between them, but who are prevented from doing so by accidents beyond their own control, and a couple which does not have all of the necessary hardware and genetic equipment to do so without the aid of technological intervention, surrogacy or both.

It's very similar to Amartya Sen's capabilities approach to development economics. Even if a homosexual couple and an infertile heterosexual couple have limits on their sexual functionings which on the surface seem similar (that is, neither couple is, for whatever reason, able to produce a baby), the infertile heterosexual couple nevertheless has a different capability set than the homosexual couple does. A union of two people - man and woman, in their complementary modes of being - is the only form of sexual union whose capability set includes the ability to produce a child.

James wrote:The position is also dismissive of single parents. And the only difference between why a person/couple may be unable to have a child biologically is conceptual, in the eye of the beholder, and need carry no weight on the perspectives of the actual parents raising the child.


Sorry, but it isn't. Even a single mom has to get sperm from somewhere. And even a single dad has to have gotten some woman pregnant to begin with. The biological capacity isn't deterred by the social circumstances of the people doing it.

James wrote:Arguing a vague/remote perspective—such as your 'conceptually possible' argument above, as being highly material to the subject—one which involves so many far more important factors (such as spending time with the child, educating the child, researching and taking care in the child's health and ensuring the child has good healthcare, making good life choices to provide the child with opportunity)—is not such an argument (unless supported with evidence).


Not sure where the exact point is in this sentence, grammatically, so I'll address both in turn.

a.) I think I have shown above that the point I was making earlier is neither vague nor remote.
b.) I agree that these are important factors, and I would agree largely that the family unit is primarily involved in them. The question is, why? After all, child-care centres can spend time with children. Schools can be tasked with educating them and providing them with opportunities in life. Pediatric clinics can provide them with healthcare. Social workers can make sure that they get it. Why is it important for the family to do these things, in your view?

James wrote:I would not be surprised if, ultimately, a cake maker must make a cake for or sell a dress to a gay couple. The likely gray area here is that which pertains to cases of a stronger religious objection, such as a religious organization performing a marriage for a same-sex couple, or a doctor being able to decline performing an abortion. Some of this will need to be decided in the courts, but the fact that some decisions may offend religious sensibilities takes a back seat to the constitution.


And this is troubling to me. I've talked about the reasons for this elsewhere, though.

The cake maker in question didn't flatly refuse to serve gay people - he was specifically not offering a particular service to the public. (He would not bake a cake for a gay wedding. I believe he said he would gladly offer gay customers any other service he provided but that one. I don't think this qualifies as discrimination - Shikanosuke would have to help out on that one, though.)

James wrote:If you want to use 'love', give your own clear definition first—because it should be your definition that qualifies your answer. That would be best, or use 'love' as a proxy for '[have a] healthy, affectionate, enriching, and mutually beneficial relationship'.

But I do want to see what it means to you. And that includes stipulations you've interjected into the subject. It's fine if we disagree. For example, a religious qualification may we be specific to belief in that religion (and thus not applicable to another couple unless they share the belief), nor would I likely see eye-to-eye on faith-based subject, but the main point is that I will in the least understand where you're coming from.

And I'll go first in answering.

I don't think there's any material distinction which makes a same-sex couple less able (or unable) to love one another. It doesn't mean there isn't one, but I have yet to see compelling argument for one, and I have yet to see any such difference demonstrated in the lives of same-sex couples I know.


Actually I do make distinctions about the definition of 'love'.

The love that attains between two siblings is not the same love as that which attains between a parent and a child. The love that attains between a husband and a wife is not the same love that attains between two friends. This is actually a view which I've borrowed directly from Confucianism, even though it has a strong parallel in Christianity, a tradition which has quite a varied vocabulary when it came to describing love.

Lewis, classicist that he was, speaks of four different types of love: storge, philia, eros and agape. He was very insistent on distinguishing the four, and he thought it incredibly dangerous to conflate them, or to expect a different kind of love from a relationship characterised by different needs and capacities. (Again, good classicist that he was, he emphasised moderation in each of these categories.) All of these different kinds of love are ultimately gifts, but like anything that falls into human hands these gifts can be used in good ways or bad ways.

Eros in particular, should be confused neither with philia, nor with agape. Eros is an incredibly powerful mode of being, which arises out of the biological drive to procreate. (I don't think this is scientifically contested at all, but a basic observable fact.) There are good and bad ways to act upon it, good and bad ways to maintain it, and good and bad ways to direct it towards its correct ends. It's my belief (both from experience and from reflection) that the 'correct ends' of eros are marriage: sacramental, kenotic, exclusive, permanent and procreative. Marriage, so my tradition teaches, is a holy bond between a man and a woman, a bond which brings together two distinct-but-complementary gendered modes of being, and opens both up to the possibility of a third. Erotic love is ultimately a creative urge, and that needs to be expressed in how it's acted on.

Eros in which another person is taken advantage of is a kind of love-gone-wrong. Eros which leads someone to cheat on, abuse or leave their spouse, is also being used wrongly. And eros which confuses itself with philia or agape is being wrongly used. The rightly-oriented love of a friendship between two men, or between two women, becomes perverted when the sex drive enters the picture. Homosexual eros which tries to approximate marriage falls short of the mark on two counts. First, it eschews biological and psychological complementarity - it directs a love of and desire for the other wrongly toward a love of the similar and familiar. Second, it closes off all possibility of admitting the third being.

But that is emphatically not to say that homosexuals are of lesser value as human beings.

I agree that it is wrong, even horrifically wrong and Satanic, to try to shape people who struggle with homosexual passions into heterosexuals. As Lewis said, each type of love has its right order. But homosexual passion does need to be fought with; Lewis did not say so in so many words, but he thought that it could be sublimated into the higher form even than eros - into agape.
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Re: Gay and Lesbian Marriage

Unread postby James » Thu Feb 05, 2015 8:59 pm

WeiWenDi wrote:
James wrote:All sounds agreeable. I have a feeling that, in the case of many wealthy families, it is just parents expressing their own version of parental interests in the partner their children may end up with. For example, in wanting their child to end up with someone likely to receive a good education, go to college, have a career. While such positions can certainly be misguided they don't seem terribly uncommon. Another form of bias not unlike what I'd be inlined toward if my [fictional] daughter showed up with someone wearing smelly clothes, ear gages, and smelling of marijuana.

All of which is fair enough. When it comes time for my daughter to start having relationships of her own, though, my wife has told me in no uncertain terms that the biggest consideration ought to be her happiness and respect for her partner. Ultimately my wishes and choices for her are secondary. Which, when she becomes an adult, is a fairly good policy to adopt in any event.

And that sounds like a very commendable and respectable position to take.

An extension of the example I gave above would be if you passed judgement on your daughter's partner because that partner was an atheist and shared such discussion with your daughter. Not that you would—I don't know—but it would be a fairly typical example of the way in which most parents would extend biases in seeing their child become romantically involved with a partner. And, to be honest, I don't think any parent could fully choke down their biases—they can only do the best they can, perhaps admirably so, to place the very virtues you outlined above first in parenting.

WeiWenDi wrote:
James wrote:Funny Monty Python skits aside, it seems you're characterizing it as a 'bogus' argument simply on grounds that you don't agree with it.

No, there actually is a valid philosophical distinction to be made between a couple which is physically and genetically complementary and able to naturally produce a child between them, but who are prevented from doing so by accidents beyond their own control, and a couple which does not have all of the necessary hardware and genetic equipment to do so without the aid of technological intervention, surrogacy or both.

It's very similar to Amartya Sen's capabilities approach to development economics. Even if a homosexual couple and an infertile heterosexual couple have limits on their sexual functionings which on the surface seem similar (that is, neither couple is, for whatever reason, able to produce a baby), the infertile heterosexual couple nevertheless has a different capability set than the homosexual couple does. A union of two people - man and woman, in their complementary modes of being - is the only form of sexual union whose capability set includes the ability to produce a child.

Hmm... the correlation with the 'capability approach', on developing economics, loses me. If this is a philosophical concept it would be best if you linked to the actual concept rather than something you label to be 'similar'. And beyond that, it's fine for a philosophical concept to draw conclusions such as these, but if those conclusions don't materialize in the real world in a demonstrable—falsifiable—manner, in an era where we do have the ability to study and consider these subjects, I have a very hard time envisioning myself taking it seriously.

But I'll be happy to consider if you find something appropriate and accessible.

WeiWenDi wrote:
James wrote:The position is also dismissive of single parents. And the only difference between why a person/couple may be unable to have a child biologically is conceptual, in the eye of the beholder, and need carry no weight on the perspectives of the actual parents raising the child.

Sorry, but it isn't. Even a single mom has to get sperm from somewhere. And even a single dad has to have gotten some woman pregnant to begin with. The biological capacity isn't deterred by the social circumstances of the people doing it.

So here's what I wrote: "For example, in believing that 'their relationship being conceptually open to the possibility of a child' is meaningful at all to the subject of whether they can be good parents. It certainly isn't (demonstrate me wrong?) based on any kind of actual research. The position is also dismissive of single parents. And the only difference between why a person/couple may be unable to have a child biologically is conceptual, in the eye of the beholder, and need carry no weight on the perspectives of the actual parents raising the child."

Saying "sorry, but it isn't" is pretty much the same as saying, "I disagree." Can you give me any factual or clear argument as to why your argument is meaningful on a material level to these parents? Why their relationship being 'conceptually open' to the biological possibility of having a child has any meaningful impact at all on them? To say nothing for an impact meaningful enough to have a noteworthy impact on their lives and relationships beyond value they place in it?

WeiWenDi wrote:a.) I think I have shown above that the point I was making earlier is neither vague nor remote.

I don't see how. Please elaborate if necessary.

WeiWenDi wrote:b.) I agree that these are important factors, and I would agree largely that the family unit is primarily involved in them. The question is, why? After all, child-care centres can spend time with children. Schools can be tasked with educating them and providing them with opportunities in life. Pediatric clinics can provide them with healthcare. Social workers can make sure that they get it. Why is it important for the family to do these things, in your view?

Is this a serious question, or are you trying to lead into another point? Everyone can make the difference in a child's life but nobody is so equipped to do so as the parent or parents who raise that child. They are the ones who play the foremost role through a child's life, they are the ones most responsible for a child's education, for the environment that matters most in their lives (their 'home'), for many of the most important choices that will be made in that child's life. The extent to which they care, and are good parents, has the greatest impact on a child's life.

These other people can make a difference. A good teacher can have an amazing impact on the life of a child—especially, in relative terms, if that child's life is suffering in other areas. But typically these people are fleeting influences in a child's life, and in many such examples they are responsible for the care of numerous children, not anywhere near so emotionally invested in the lives of those children, not willing in the first place to extend that emotional investment with so many children. There are certainly exceptions. Along the same line of reasoning, those who do play a more invested role in a child's life, such as a grandparent, can also play an important role.

WeiWenDi wrote:
James wrote:I would not be surprised if, ultimately, a cake maker must make a cake for or sell a dress to a gay couple. The likely gray area here is that which pertains to cases of a stronger religious objection, such as a religious organization performing a marriage for a same-sex couple, or a doctor being able to decline performing an abortion. Some of this will need to be decided in the courts, but the fact that some decisions may offend religious sensibilities takes a back seat to the constitution.

And this is troubling to me. I've talked about the reasons for this elsewhere, though.

The cake maker in question didn't flatly refuse to serve gay people - he was specifically not offering a particular service to the public. (He would not bake a cake for a gay wedding. I believe he said he would gladly offer gay customers any other service he provided but that one. I don't think this qualifies as discrimination - Shikanosuke would have to help out on that one, though.)

While I answered in the other topic, it's on topic here, so I'll go on.

Your distinction of 'not offering a particular service' is, almost certainly, not going to be a meaningful legal argument. That's the direction this sort of concern has taken in the past through other civil rights concerns and that's the direction it will most likely go in this a case such as this. Why should there be a distinction between letting someone enter the door to a building and refusing to sell them the product?

And it is still discrimination. The only difference between this and cases such as discrimination against blacks or women (the later of which is still being sorted out today) is that courts have had more time to weigh in and settle concerns on those matters.

And legal concerns aside, it doesn't seem like a very 'Christian' thing to do...

WeiWenDi wrote:Actually I do make distinctions about the definition of 'love'.

The love that attains between two siblings is not the same love as that which attains between a parent and a child. The love that attains between a husband and a wife is not the same love that attains between two friends. This is actually a view which I've borrowed directly from Confucianism, even though it has a strong parallel in Christianity, a tradition which has quite a varied vocabulary when it came to describing love.

Lewis, classicist that he was, speaks of four different types of love: storge, philia, eros and agape. He was very insistent on distinguishing the four, and he thought it incredibly dangerous to conflate them, or to expect a different kind of love from a relationship characterised by different needs and capacities. (Again, good classicist that he was, he emphasised moderation in each of these categories.) All of these different kinds of love are ultimately gifts, but like anything that falls into human hands these gifts can be used in good ways or bad ways.

Eros in particular, should be confused neither with philia, nor with agape. Eros is an incredibly powerful mode of being, which arises out of the biological drive to procreate. (I don't think this is scientifically contested at all, but a basic observable fact.) There are good and bad ways to act upon it, good and bad ways to maintain it, and good and bad ways to direct it towards its correct ends. It's my belief (both from experience and from reflection) that the 'correct ends' of eros are marriage: sacramental, kenotic, exclusive, permanent and procreative. Marriage, so my tradition teaches, is a holy bond between a man and a woman, a bond which brings together two distinct-but-complementary gendered modes of being, and opens both up to the possibility of a third. Erotic love is ultimately a creative urge, and that needs to be expressed in how it's acted on.

Eros in which another person is taken advantage of is a kind of love-gone-wrong. Eros which leads someone to cheat on, abuse or leave their spouse, is also being used wrongly. And eros which confuses itself with philia or agape is being wrongly used. The rightly-oriented love of a friendship between two men, or between two women, becomes perverted when the sex drive enters the picture. Homosexual eros which tries to approximate marriage falls short of the mark on two counts. First, it eschews biological and psychological complementarity - it directs a love of and desire for the other wrongly toward a love of the similar and familiar. Second, it closes off all possibility of admitting the third being.

But that is emphatically not to say that homosexuals are of lesser value as human beings.

I agree that it is wrong, even horrifically wrong and Satanic, to try to shape people who struggle with homosexual passions into heterosexuals. As Lewis said, each type of love has its right order. But homosexual passion does need to be fought with; Lewis did not say so in so many words, but he thought that it could be sublimated into the higher form even than eros - into agape.

So what does that mean? "Homosexuals are unable to love one another as heterosexuals do because they don't fall properly into these categories of 'love' as defined by Lewis"?

Why are you refusing to answer the question using your own language? Can you enumerate any number of clear reasons as to why they cannot love one another as a heterosexual couple can? Or is your best, clearest answer really that it disagrees with the philosophical categorization/conceptualization you've outlined above?
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