Thursday, June 01, 2006

President to Address Our Most Important Problem

A commentor recently criticized us for quoting from a liberal web site, like that wasn't "objective" enough for them. So this time, I'll quote from a ... very conservative ... site, The Weekly Standard, without comment. The article is kind of long, so I'll just use snippets separated by ellipses. If you doubt my editing, or would just like to read more, the link is at the end.
JUNE 6, 2006, is an important date, not only because it's the 62nd anniversary of D-Day. It's also the day the Senate will vote on the so-called marriage amendment, which would amend the Constitution to restrict marriage in America to a man and a woman.

It won't pass. A constitutional amendment requires a two-thirds majority in the Senate and the House. When the Senate voted in 2004, the amendment got only 48 votes. This time, it's likely to get more--probably between 52 and 58--in part because a powerful and unusually ecumenical religious coalition is now backing the amendment. And President Bush, despite his wife Laura's admonition that the marriage issue ought to be kept out of politics, plans to host a pro-amendment event at the White House and speak out in favor of the amendment.

Once dismissed as a sop to social conservatives, the proposed amendment has become a serious rallying point for opponents of same-sex marriage. The June 6 vote will put senators on the record and make their position on the amendment a potential campaign issue. And the formation of the religious coalition means the issue won't go away soon.

Much of the conventional wisdom about the amendment and the marriage issue turns out to be wrong. For instance, the amendment is not being pushed by Republicans as a wedge issue aimed at dividing Democratic voters. Republican senators regard the issue as touchy and awkward. In fact, they agree with First Lady Laura Bush, who said on Fox News Sunday that the subject of gay marriage "requires a lot of sensitivity" and shouldn't "be used as a campaign tool."

They'd prefer the issue--and the amendment--go away.

In response, the Religious Coalition for Marriage was formed specifically to back the amendment ... What's surprising about the coalition is its breadth. It includes all eight Catholic cardinals in America, liberal and conservative, plus officials of the Southern Baptist Convention, the Greek Orthodox Church, the Lutheran Church Missouri Synod, the Church of God in Christ, the National Association of Evangelicals, and the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints (Mormons), among others.

As for Bush, he will appear on June5 in the Rose Garden before a gathering of amendment supporters and, a White House official says, "strongly support" the amendment. The president has rarely mentioned the amendment in the past. The choice of the Rose Garden as a venue means he is raising the marriage amendment to a higher level on his agenda, his wife's advice notwithstanding.

LINK: With this Bill . . . The Senate debates marriage.


Anonymous David S. Fishback said...


Presumably the pictures were not in the Weekly Standard print edition.

And where can we find 2.95 gas now?

June 01, 2006 10:21 AM  
Anonymous Dixie said...

"NASHVILLE, Tenn. (May 31) - Country trio the Dixie Chicks, the darlings of Nashville until their singer criticized President Bush three years ago, opened at No. 1 on the U.S. charts Wednesday"


June 01, 2006 2:53 PM  
Blogger Orin Ryssman said...

David writes,

And where can we find 2.95 gas now?

At present, gas is holding steady at $2.75 here in Northern Colorado, though some places are as low as $2.65. That could all change after the Hugo Chavez hosted OPEC meeting...

And Jim writes,

President to Address Our Most Important Problem

and then posts a variety of pictures meant clearly to question the title of this blog entry.

Cynical...and disappointing...though not surprising.

And to address this issue head on, the issue of marriage is important to a society. Look at how Europe is intentionally de-populating itself, and how many social observers have linked this to the decline in marriage, a social institution there that has been so radically re-defined that it has lost any real meaning.

Are there other important issues? You bet...more than enough to go around, but that does not mean that protecting a bedrock social institution against being re-defined to mean just about anything cannot also be included in a list of important items deserving of interest.

June 02, 2006 5:33 AM  
Anonymous David S. Fishback said...


In the DC area,the lowest I've seen in quite a while is $2.99. But it is too far to drive to Colorado for gas.

A lot of things have contributed to problems facing marriage and family. But the decline of old societal forces that psychologically compelled homosexuals into heterosexual marriages is not one of those things. How could it be? Desparately unhappy marriages cannot strengthen the institution of marriage.

I would posit that low birth rates among Europeans have far more to do with economic and cultural factors having nothing to do with sexual orientation than with the fact that a small percentage of men -- gay men -- are no longer entering fraudulent marriages with women.

Finally, how could preventing same sex couples from choosing the responsibilities and rights of marriage possibly negatively impact heterosexual marriage?

It seems to me that supporters of federal or state constitutional amendments banning legal recognitions of same sex unions (whether called marriage or not)think that forcing gay people back in the closet and/or encouraging fraudulent marriages for appearances sake, and/or that if the clock is turned back that gays will somehow be able to change their sexual orientation, thus allowing them to enter into good heterosexual marriages.

Orrin, I'd appreciate hearing any different perspective you have on this.

June 02, 2006 6:10 AM  
Blogger JimK said...

Orin, what are the chances that, without a Constitutional amendment, guys would just want to marry other guys? That has never been a highly tempting distraction for me, and my intuition is that Cleaveresque marriage is not particularly threatened by the presence of alternatives. On the other hand, it does not sound like a bad idea to provide incentives for gay couples to settle down and create a stable family.

Personally, I'd prefer to have a government that promoted freedoms rather than restrictions.

Oh, and the idea that a citizen would want his elected officials to concern themselves with real problems ... cynical? No.


June 02, 2006 7:10 AM  

Post a Comment

<< Home