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America's Culture War: Homosexuality

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State Marriage Amendments: The Current Status

by  Dave Miller, Ph.D.

When the U.S. Supreme Court declared state sodomy laws unconstitutional in 2003 (Lawrence v. Texas, 2003), and then, one year later in 2004, four liberal activist judges sitting on the high court of Massachusetts granted homosexual and lesbian couples the right to marry (Miller, 2004), within six months the sleeping giant of America’s moral majority began to awaken from its slumber. The November 2, 2004 election found eleven of the fifty states giving citizens an opportunity to indicate their will with regard to the definition of marriage. The results were decisive and overwhelmingly in favor of defining marriage as between a man and a woman. Here are the results of the elections held in those eleven states:

STATE RESULTS
For Against

Arkansas

75%

25%

Georgia

77%

23%

Kentucky

75%

25%

Michigan

59%

41%

Mississippi

86%

14%

Montana

66%

34%

North Dakota

73%

27%

Ohio

62%

38%

Oklahoma

76%

24%

Oregon

57%

43%

Utah

66%

34%

These eleven states joined six other states that had already passed comparable initiatives: Alaska, Hawaii, Nebraska, Nevada, Missouri, and Louisiana (see Brown and Martin, 2004). The margins in these states were likewise overwhelmingly opposed to “gay marriage.” In April 2005, Kansas became the 18th state to codify marriage in harmony with the biblical definition (Peterson, 2005).

I must confess, I was a little pleased, if not surprised, to find him think like an American on the subject of matrimony and domestic felicity. For in my estimation more permanent and genuine happiness is to be found in the sequestered walks of connubial life than in the giddy rounds of promiscuous pleasure (1835, 9:190).If the Founders of these United States were alive today, they would not believe that America is actually going through the process of debating the definition of marriage! If they had known that American civilization would slump to the point of entertaining the legalization of homosexuality, they undoubtedly would have written into the founding documents the essentiality of heterosexual marriage. The “father” of our country, George Washington, alluding to the sexually permissive condition of France at the time, addressed the subject of marriage in a comment he made regarding French general Charles Armand-Tuffin, the Marquis de la Rouerie:Additional states are expected to join these seventeen as they, too, give Americans the opportunity to express their collective moral will. State amendments already approved by legislatures and scheduled for a statewide vote include Alabama (June 2006), South Dakota (November 2006), and Tennessee (November 2006). Four states are considering bills that would legalize same-sex marriage: California, Connecticut, Maine, and Rhode Island. Legislation that would have banned same-sex marriage died in Idaho, Maryland, New Mexico, and Wyoming.

The president simply was expressing the standard viewpoint of the entire nation.

More to the point, the country’s stance on same-sex relations was made evident when General George Washington issued orders at Valley Forge on March 14, 1778, regarding the punishment of a soldier who attempted to engage in homosexual relations:

At a General Court Martial whereof Colo. Tupper was President (10th March 1778), Lieut. Enslin of Colo. Malcom’s Regiment [was] tried for attempting to commit sodomy, with John Monhort a soldier...[he was] found guilty of the charges exhibited against him, being breaches of 5th. Article 18th. Section of the Articles of War and [we] do sentence him to be dismiss’d [from] the service with infamy. His Excellency the Commander in Chief approves the sentence and with abhorrence and detestation of such infamous crimes orders Lieut. Enslin to be drummed out of the camp tomorrow morning by all the drummers and fifers in the Army never to return (Washington, 1934, 11:83-84, emp. added).

A fierce battle for America’s commitment to Christian morality is being waged. The outcome of this battle will, in fact, determine whether God allows America to perpetuate its national existence with its unparalleled freedom and unprecedented standard of prosperity. The same battle has been fought over and over throughout the history of the world. God’s warnings to another nation over two millennia ago are tailor made for America:

[I]f you turn away and forsake My statutes and My commandments which I have set before you, and go and serve other gods, and worship them, then I will uproot them from My land which I have given them; ...everyone who passes by it will be astonished and say, “Why has the Lord done thus to this land...?” Then they will answer, “Because they forsook the Lord God of their fathers,... and embraced other gods, and worshiped them and served them; therefore He has brought all this calamity on them” (2 Chronicles 7:19-22).

REFERENCES

Brown, Jodie and Allie Martin (2004), “Traditional Marriage Exalted in Every State’s Amendment Vote,” Catholic Exchange, [On-line], URL: http://www.catholicexchange.com/vm/index.asp?vm_id=97&art_id=25942.

Lawrence v. Texas (2003), [On-line], URL: http://caselaw.lp.findlaw.com/cgi-bin/getcase.pl?court=US&navby=case&vol=000&invol=02-102.

Miller, Dave (2004), “Massachusetts and Gay Marriages,” [On-line], URL: http://www.apologeticspress.org/articles/2384.

Peterson, Kavan (2005), “Same-sex Unions: A Constitutional Race,” Stateline.org, [On-line], URL: http://www.stateline.org/live/ViewPage.action?siteNodeId=136&languageId=1&contentId=20695, March 29.

Washington, George (1835), The Writings of George Washington, ed. Jared Sparks (Boston, MA: Ferdinand Andrews).

Washington, George (1934), The Writings of George Washington, ed. John Fitzpatrick (Washington, DC: U.S. Government Printing Office, 1931-1944).




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