The Senate is debating this week a proposed Constitutional amendment that would define the nature of marriage as being a union between one man and one woman. It is unlikely to pass, but if you have any desire to put in your two cents, you should write to your Senators via their online email form at Senate.gov. I wrote to my two Senators and told them to vote in favor of the amendment. Whether they themselves agree or disagree with the terms of the amendment, I told them that it was important to let the people have a voice in this issue. If the amendment were passed by Congress and signed by President Bush, it would still need three-fourths of the individual states to ratify it before it would take effect. Back in 2004, President Bush introduced the amendment this way:
Eight years ago, Congress passed, and President Clinton signed, the Defense of Marriage Act, which defined marriage for purposes of federal law as the legal union between one man and one woman as husband and wife.
The Act passed the House of Representatives by a vote of 342 to 67, and the Senate by a vote of 85 to 14. Those congressional votes and the passage of similar defensive marriage laws in 38 states express an overwhelming consensus in our country for protecting the institution of marriage.
With numbers like that, you’d think an amendment would be a slam dunk, but other than Senator Ben Nelson of Nebraska, all Senate Democrats have declared that they will vote against the amendment. I wrote about the 2004 vote on the same amendment, and how it showed deep disdain for the common citizen. And with the Democrat Senators again posed to vote against the amendment, they will again show with their actions that they do not trust the citizens to make the right decision.
Here is part of a news story from KATV in Arkansas.
… a homosexual pastor here in Arkansas says the government should not be able to decide who gets married.
(Randy Mccain, Homosexual Pastor) “I married my best friend.”
The person Pastor Randy Mccain calls his best friend and spouse is another man — a man by the name of Gary Eddy-McCain. The two have shared their lives more than a decade.
(McCain) “The state of Arkansas gives me the right to marry heterosexual couples, and yet my 14-year loving, committed relationship is not recognized by the state of Arkansas.”
The first sentence is interesting. Pastor McCain states that government shouldn’t be able to have a say about who gets married, but what he wants is for the government to state that he can get married. It’s pretty clear that he’s not that much of a clear thinker with comments like “I married my best friend,” followed up by an acknowledgement that his “marriage” is “not recognized by the state of Arkansas.”
I’ve written about the importance of heterosexual marriage before, and pointed out its benefits:
Marriage is far from meaningless. J. D. Unwin’s 1934 book Sex and Culture outlines 86 different cultures and their historical decline. None of these cultures lasted more than three generations after marriage fell out of favor with the people. Unwin wasn’t the only person to come up with this idea. Giambattista Vico concluded the same thing in 1725. He saw that marriage between a man and a woman was critical for the growth of civilization. It is the “seedbed” of society, and marriage between a man and a woman is the best environment for raising children. Anything that departs from this damages men, women, and most of all children.
I would like the champions of gay marriage to show where and how such unions have been successful over multiple generations. If this cannot be shown, then why should we change a working system for something that has never panned out in the long run?
UPDATE (6/7/2006 11:29:56 AM): The amendment failed to get the two-thirds vote of the Senate to pass. Since 38 states have passed legislation very similar to this amendment, it shows that there is sufficient popular support for this amendment. But the Senate is saying that they know more that the people.