Thursday, October 30, 2008

Proposition 8

Although I am neither the most eloquent of writers nor the most qualified on this subject, and I do not have much time to get my many thoughts down, I have been recently inspired by Elder M. Russell Ballard to use technology to further the ideals that I feel strongly about. As this election is getting down to the big crunch, I would like to briefly add my voice in support of Proposition 8.
This issue actually took a while for me to come to terms with. On the surface, it seems like- hey, why shouldn't the gay neighbors next door be able to marry?- and many people are getting hung up on this. The thing is, that this is not a proposition with affects that are directly related to gay rights only, this is something that has the potential to limit the rights of all people. Isn't it the right of Catholic adoption agencies to only approve families with the financial stability, mental capacities, and who are legally married to adopt through them? Or is this anti-gay, anti-poverty, and discriminating against those with mental imbalances? Where do we draw the line? Being a homosexual couple will obviously not have the same impact on an adopted child that being detrimentally impoverished or critically mentally ill would have. However, heterosexual family relationships is something that the Catholic Church (and many other churches) hold as a sacred truth. These adoption agencies are not actively hating gays, but they cannot, according to their morals, support them in this way. It would be a logical fallacy according to all of their beliefs. And, I believe, it is our right to uphold our religious beliefs. Last time I checked, the freedom of religion was a founding principle of this nation.
And what about the LDS church's temples wherein marriages are performed? Isn't it their right as a religion to be able to marry those who follow the guidelines of their doctrines in the sanctuaries that belong to them? If this Proposition was passed, I feel that these and other such religious buildings of significance will be asked to compromise their standards and, since that would be impossible according to their doctrine, they must necessarily shut down, taking away the right of fervent LDS, for example, couples to marry in their own temples. What about their rights?
M. Russell Ballard discussed in his talk on Prop 8 a couple of weeks ago that people are judging proponents of this proposition as bigots, saying that we claim to follow Christ and yet we do not love others who are different than us. I really appreciated his reaction to this. He said that the tolerance preached today by modern politics is not the tolerance of the Savior. The world would have us not only accept the actions of others, not matter what they are, but also to celebrate and support them at the expense of our own values. The world asks us to embrace a relativism that is simply false and that leads to nowhere but confusion and lawlessness. The Savior, on the other hand, loved all people and yet taught that there are eternal and unchanging principles of truth on which this world is founded. It is our duty to love others, yet we cannot condone sin. We must love and respect our gay neighbors as children of God, which they are, and as people with feelings and needs and great abilities. However, we must follow our principles and stay true to our values because no unclean thing can enter into the presence of God.
It is my belief that fighting for gay "marriage" is a fruitless battle considering that, as I see it, gay couples can already enjoy the benefits of civil unions that give them all the rights of a married man and woman. This is not a battle of rights that the opponents are supporting, because most of these rights are already in place through civil unions, this is a battle of terminology. And who are we to change the meaning of "marriage"? Isn't this definition already clear: the legal union of a man and woman. This is a heterosexual institution. Civil unions are the homosexual version of it and as long as they are getting the same tax and other benefits as straight couples, I think that we are alright. May we embrace our homosexual neighbors with love and respect, but not try to undermine the rights of others or the sacred institution of marriage over an unnecessary battle with expansive consequences.


Betsy said...

WAY TO GO!! You did an excellent, eloquent job. I'm seeing the lawyer in you already!!

Ariel said...

Lindsey the Lawyer...yes it is a fitting title. Yay for Prop 8! I'm so glad it passed.