The Instigator
JTSmith
Pro (for)
Winning
54 Points
The Contender
Maya9
Con (against)
Losing
43 Points

If We Legalize Gay Marriage, We Must Enact Protection Laws for the Rights of Churches!

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Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 7/3/2008 Category: Politics
Updated: 8 years ago Status: Voting Period
Viewed: 2,355 times Debate No: 4583
Debate Rounds (3)
Comments (6)
Votes (26)

 

JTSmith

Pro

I myself am pro gay-marriage. The way I see it, homosexuals have a right to live a homosexual lifestyle if they choose, whether I agree with it or not.
Now I am not here to argue whether or not gay marriage should be legal.
If my opponent does, I will refrain from posting any further arguments and I would ask the voters to vote PRO.

What I am arguing is that if we legalize gay marriage, we must pass legislation protecting the rights of churches to refuse to perform such a marriage.

I myself am a religous person. When I read an article about a homosexual couple who sued a church that refused to perform their marriage I was disgusted!!!
The church was forced to perform the marraige on the grounds that to refuse based on sexual orientation was discrimination. Now I thought that this was a ridiculous ruling because there was a whole other aspect of this case that was ignored. There was a very clear and blatant violation of the church's freedom of religion! The church was forced to perform a marriage that was against their faith. That is a very clear violation of their religious rights.
Now this disturbed me. It was one church, but if we legalize gay marriage, it will be lots of churches. It could very well be my religious leaders that will be forced to violate their religious beliefs because of a court ruling.

There are many churches that will perform gay marriages and those that wont should not be governmentally forced to violate their beliefs.
Many would see this as being forced to sin against god!

Anyway, my point is this...
If we legalize gay marriage, a church's or a religious leaders rights to refuse to perform the marriage must be entact! We must pass legislation to protect it!
Maya9

Con

I contend that current laws, particularly the first amendment to the Constitution, are sufficient. The government cannot force private organizations to perform such services.

Would you mind citing this "article" you read?
Debate Round No. 1
JTSmith

Pro

How can you say that the current laws are enough????
It already happened! Clearly the current laws aren't enough!

I agree that they should be, but as long as their are "liberal" judges, they wont be.

As far as providing the article goes, I am going to have to steal the link from my mother who is currently sleeping, seeing as it is 5:48 in the morning
I will provide one as soon as I have one.

I have been able to find mention of it a few times if i googled with key words like
Homosexual
Sueing
Church
Methodist
New Jersey
Maya9

Con

Again, until you can prove that this happened and under what circumstances, you really have no argument. The first amendment clearly gives everyone the right to practice their religion as they see fit, as long as they break no laws. If some judge has made such an unfair decision, then this church should be appealing to the Supreme Court. Enforcing the Constitution is their job.
Debate Round No. 2
JTSmith

Pro

okay
well seeing as i am running out of time and I have been unable to locate the article on foxnews I will drop the article and I will attempt to close with this.

Because of my inability to locate the article I will for my opponent argue as if such and event has yet to occur.

First, I ask this.
How long before something like this does happen??? Judges aren't all perfect and it WILL happen.

Just the idea brings me to this point...
my opponent says the current laws are enough. the fact the we are, in fact debating on it says that there is doubt as to whether that is true. If there is doubt, then why not pass the extra legislation??? Even if there isnt doubt then why not pass the extra legislation just for extra security of the religious.
I skate. I can go out with a helmet and Ill be fine. I know this. But shouldnt I wear the extra pads just in case??? Of course i should. Its a safety precaution. The same rule applies to the protection of our churches. The constitution is vague on just where exactly faith and the law create friction. Why not pass the more specific legislation and dispel any confusion?
Better safe than sorry.

and heck!!! furthermore... it could very well be a catalyst to compromise. The gays get their right to marriage and the churches get their right to have nothing to do with it. No rights are violated and everyone gets at least part of what they want.
Compromise is the foundation of our current government. Its how our founding father solved their disputes and it has been behind every successful bit of legislation in our history. Passing this legislation is a key to compromise.

So to sum it up.
1. It doesnt hurt us, so what do we have to lose??? Its only extra protection. It would be foolish not to take it!
2. It could the way too cool down the heat on the topic of gay marriage. It would show that the government cares about both parties. Compromise baby... compromise.
Maya9

Con

Extra legislation most certainly could be harmful. Legislators with backwards agendas and the lobbyists buzzing in the ears of said legislators have a way of working unfair privileges into laws like these. Superfluous legislation is always a bad thing. At the very least, it wastes the money of taxpayers. Until it can be proven that such legislation is needed, it should not be enacted.
Debate Round No. 3
6 comments have been posted on this debate. Showing 1 through 6 records.
Posted by Cg09 8 years ago
Cg09
Churches don't need anymore rights they already don't pay taxes.
Posted by jurist24 8 years ago
jurist24
JTSmith, when you failed to find the article, you argued based largely on assumptions. Example:

"How long before something like this does happen??? Judges aren't all perfect and it WILL happen."

Assuming that it *will* happen does not validate your argument; rather, it removes your logic from the facts. This is not an affective manner of argument. May I be allowed to say "We should pass anti-Death Star legislation because our next president WILL be interested in building a space station the size of a small moon." Even though the scale of my assumption is larger, it still takes the form of yours.

Secondly, the only method by which a person can request a court order a church to do anything is by filing for an injunction. In an injunction proceeding, the plaintiff seeking the court-ordered action must show that he has been aggrieved in some way by the defendant. Thus, absent any other considerations of contract or tort, the plaintiff would have to show that the actions of a church refusing to wed he and his partner have worked some sort of injury upon them. There is simply no basis in the law for an injunction to be issued here, because even though the plaintiff may be able to show a psychological injury at best, that injury was not inflicted on the plaintiff with the intent to harm (i.e., the church policy to not marry gays was not promulgated in response to our plaintiff's request to marry him.)

Furthermore, this little Establishment Clause thing would likely preclude any consideration of the issue. One would be hard pressed indeed to find a judge who would issue a COURT-ORDER that a church perform a religious service for a certain individual. This suit has no precedent in American (or, for what I can recall, European) law.
Posted by Xera 8 years ago
Xera
1st of all I looked up the case in question. No one forced the church to perform the ceremony. The church owned a camp ground that it occassionally rented out to organizations other than it's members. NJ has a law that if any part of the public is welcome to use a facillity, it must be made equally available to all. This is pretty much a standard law everywhere. The church opened itself up to being required to allow the lesbian couple to rent the grounds when they rented the grounds out to other groups that were not part of the church.

Churches and other private orginizations are allowed to discriminate becasue they are PRIVATE. The moment they openly welcome members of the general community to benifit from their services, they are open to the requirement to provide those services for all.

Therefor, if the Methodist church begins providing marriage services to Jewish people, it will then be open to being reqired to provide that service for all people that request it. While it is private, it remains private choice.
Posted by Johnicle 8 years ago
Johnicle
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Posted by JTSmith 8 years ago
JTSmith
The difference is, government action against the hotel would not be violating any specific rights of the owner. One may argue that he does have that right, but seeing as it is not specifically mentioned, that decision is up to the court.
As far as religion goes, government action would activily violate a very clearly right expressed in the constition.

It becomes a war, and this is why churches win...
We have to chose who's rights to honor first. Gays or the Religious.
Seeing as gay rights are not specifically mention and religious rights are, that makes the score
Religion: 1
Homosexuality: 0

Also, seeing as honoring religious rights would be honoring the rights of more than homosexual rights, honoring religious rights is more fair because it respects the wishes of more people.

Religion: 2
Homosexuality: 0

Lastly, seeing as any privately owned institution is allowed to deny service to anybody for any reason, then the church is more than welcome to refuse service.

Religon: 3
Homosexuality: 0
Posted by brian_eggleston 8 years ago
brian_eggleston
I don't see why churches should have any more right to discriminate than any other form of establishment.

If a hotel put a sign up outside saying "Whites Only, Strictly no Blacks, Hispanics or Asians" or "The Handicapped are not Welcome Here" or "This Hotel is Proud to be a Gay-Free Zone", it would, rightly, face legal action.
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