Monday, November 27, 2006

Don't Drag ME into This!

Several weeks ago, before the election, I read an article written the day after the NJ Supreme Court ruled that gay couples were entitled to the same legal/financial rights and benefits as heterosexual couples. President Bush's quote caught my eye. He reiterated his stance that marriage was a union between a man and a woman and said:

''Yesterday in New Jersey, we had another activist court issue a ruling that raises doubts about the institution of marriage. . . I believe it's a sacred institution that is critical to the health of our society and the well-being of families, and it must be defended."

Sacred? Defended against what?

I started thinking about this from my vantage point of 28 very happy years in a heterosexual marriage. When we got our marriage license at our local municipality, there was nothing sacred about it, just an exchange of paperwork, money and blood test results. Come to think about it, I'm not even sure we're legally married! A friend came with us as our required witness. She had to fill out a form where she had to put down how long she knew us. She put down ten years. I just gave her an incredulous look and we finished up. Out of earshot of the county clerk's office I asked her WHY she had lied and put down ten years when she had known us for four years. She said she was afraid that they wouldn't give us the license if she didn't put down that she knew us for a really long time. We were all hysterical laughing! To this day, we kid her about it. The next week our civil union was followed with a church ceremony.

But back to serious matters - the president's use of the word sacred bothered me. Merriam-Webster Online shows multiple definitions for "sacred," three being related to religion and one meaning "highly valued and important." I wonder which version of "sacred" President Bush meant? As the leader of this diverse nation, with separation of church and state part of the fabric of our country, I hope it was not any of the religious meanings. If he meant that marriage is "valued and important," well, yes, I agree with that. What I don't understand is, if marriage is "critical to the health of our society and the well-being of families," then why not try to include as many people as you can?

I also don't understand the part about how marriage "must be defended." Against what? I have read and heard people talk about how allowing gay people to marry will change their own marriages. I can't see this at all. My marriage is between my husband and me, thank you - it is certainly not going to be affected by what someone else does with their relationship. Could anyone seriously think that any of the following could possibly be true:

"Oh, Honey, a married gay couple just moved in next door - I can't deal with it, I'm going to have to divorce you."
"Dear, that married gay couple looks happier than us - I'm going to try being gay for awhile."
"Oh, no, a married gay couple in the neighborhood, keep the children away, it may be contagious!"

I really don't get it. Defend against WHAT? I'd appreciate it if someone could tell me how someone else's loving and committed family could be a bad thing for me or my family. I can't even imagine a scenario where a gay marriage would affect my own.

As for the school situation where a child has two "mommies" or two "daddies" - teaching tolerance and respect for all other people can only be a plus. Having a child who needed special education services because of learning disabilities, I am aware that there is far too much taunting and bullying that goes on in schools. If tolerance and ethical behavior were taught in every classroom, it is my opinion that this country would be in much better shape.

I would love to see a system where the government issued only civil union licenses, giving all couples the same legal and financial benefits. Then, if a couple wanted to pursue a religious marriage ceremony, that would be for them to work out with their own religious institution.

So for the record, President Bush, my husband and I are doing quite well. We really do not need any defending from gay couples, families with gay parents, or any of the gay people legally married in Massachusetts. Maybe you can concentrate on more pressing matters that we do need defending from - things like terrorists, the cost of healthcare, or the tax structure that favors the very wealthy.

31 comments:

Anonymous said...

I am right there with you on this one! As someone who has the legal authority granted by the state to marry people according to a religious rite, I have always been baffled by the fact that marrige does not seem to include separation of church and state. Actually, in the Massachusetts Bay Colony, marriage took place before the civil magistrates and had no religious (Puritan) blessing. It wasn't until westward expansion that it became practice for clergy to perfom marriages on behalf of the state - largely because there were no other civil authorities in new territories or settlements and clergy were already the record keepers (baptism, burials, etc.) So while there might have been a reason historically, there isn't now.
I no longer perform the civil part of the marriage - which legally is the consent piece. Anyone can get a temporary license as a J.P. and perform this part of the ceremony. I happyily do the blessing part for straight or gay couples because I am in the blessing business. I have never been in the civil authority business!

Dr.John said...

The two hat thing always bothered me as well. I married both for the state and the Church. If I didn't get the information back to the courthouse on time I would have been fined.
I agree with you. Let the state do the legal thing and the church by its own rules will bless or not bless the couple.

Secret Simon said...

Hi Sunflower - Very well argued! I love your photos, by the way...

QUASAR9 said...

"I would love to see a system where the government issued only civil union licenses, giving all couples the same legal and financial benefits. Then, if a couple wanted to pursue a religious marriage ceremony, that would be for them to work out with their own religious institution."

That already is the case - at least in England. What counts is the civil ceremony 'contract' or partnership. The religious ceremony means nothing under civil law.

On the other hand when you go to any bar, club or restaurant (even shop) they reserve the right not to serve you - especially if you haven't got cash or a valid credit card.
Some clubs, restaurants or shops are so expensive they become 'exclusive' by default.

Note the word 'exclusivity' means something not available to all.
Therefore I think people are entitled to be exclusive - you would not invite strangers off the street into your home - or maybe you would.
But you know in the 'real' world not anyone or everyone is welcome at your place, nor incidentally, no matter how nice we may think we are - are we welcome at anybody's home.

Kat said...

I couldn't have said it better myself. We have close gay friends that have been together for more than 20 years. Because Ohio doesn't recognize gay marriage, should one of them need emergency surgery, they other can't authorize it. Criminal. Bush is such a homophobe it creeps me out.

Velvet Sacks said...

Great post, Sunflower! I agree with you wholeheartedly.

Sometimes I wonder if the "money" that keeps this issue on the president's mind comes from the health insurance industry. They're the only people I can think of who stand to lose financially by the passage of laws entitling another portion of the population to benefits that aren't available to them now.

Most of us aren't affected in any way by what our next door neighbors choose to do in their bedrooms. I don't know why it bothers George so much.

starbender said...

Hope I can help clear something up:

The Separation of Church and State
Our founders had much to say about God's place in government Situation
Contrary to popular opinion, the term “separation of church and state” is found nowhere in the United States Constitution, the Declaration of Independence, or any other founding document of this nation. Yet for decades, some organizations and individuals have spread the myth that the words “separation of church and state” are found in the U.S. Constitution. Because of this misinformation, the ACLU and its allies have used this phrase to persuade public officials to silence religious expression.

Context
It was the intention of the Founding Fathers that religious faith should be encouraged, rather than discouraged. Unfortunately, there are those today who would ignore this history of America, and the intentions of our founders.

for more information, go HERE

I know that the post was more about marriage, but it freaks me out all this talk about seperation of Church and State- when it really never existed--Look into it if anyone is in disbelief! (for those who prefer Wikipedia--go HERE)

Sorry- I just felt the need 2 set the record straight!
' ]

QUASAR9 said...

Hi Velvet Sacks,
In the real world we have a NHS a National Health Service in England
that is supposed to treat people for free - at the point of delivery

But what most people do not realise is that any docotor or hospital can refuse to treat you, even for the common cold (under whatever pretext he chooses).

Just like you cannot make a horse drink, you cannot 'force' a doctor to treat a patient, even if the doctor is paid by the state. Not can you sanction the doctor - all he needs do is refer you somewhere else - and you could spend years in the system being referred from place to place (yep, they've all done their job) without actually being seen or treated by anyone.

Add to that the fact, that a patient takes on trust that a doctor, surgeon or specialist has the patient's best interest at heart ...
and you are left with the bizarre situation in England where a man was performing mastectomies on women, to further his career & ego, and because he could claim vast sums (£thousands at a time) from the State purse, the Public purse, private health insurance, and any other mug who fell into his hands ...
and then it was proven that some of these women didn't need mastectomies or breast surgery, if they even had cancer at all to start with.

But I digress from the topic of the day - or do I.

In the UK it is now neccessary for at least two people (with incomes) to enter into a contract to get a mortgage. The bank or buildong society does not care if these two people are married (civil or church) or whether they are same sex. It is a simple business transaction.

On your health insurance you should be able to nominate another person (spouse, child or lover) but the spouse is not the child, the child should not be the lover, and the lover is not always the spouse. Idem for pensions.

As long as you have a 'nominated' beneficiary for your health insurance and/or pension - it should be of little consequence that the named 'beneficiary' is a spouse, child. or lover.

A marriage certificate whether civil or church should have no influence on who is the beneficiary. Though of course in any dispute about inheritance you always get 'entitled' relatives come out of the woodwork - especialy if the inheritance is of any consequence.

And finally - we have a ban on smoking in public places spreading through Europe.

With exceptions for smoking clubs, cigar clubs, or 'gentlemen's clubs'
Would you insist that non smokers be allowed into these places - and then demand smoking be banned in these places too.
Wouldn't that infringe on MY rights to associate freely with smokers.

Reminds me of the women of temperance, who thought drinking was a SIN, and would go to drinking dens to spoil drinker's fun. Are there not enough gay clubs
Then by rights you should also be allowed to have non-gay clubs, no?

Should Muslims insist in going to christian churches, and tell christians which verses to sing?
Should Jews insist on going to mosques and insist the meeting and prayers be held in yiddish

Should Protestants go to Catholic and Orthodox churches and insist communion wine be 'banned'???

Freedom - starts with respecting the freedoms of others. Once you expect to impose your 'freedoms' on other (worship or no worship) then you open the gates to retaliation. Ergo Palestine/Israel conflict. Shia/Sunni/Kurd conflicy in Iraq. Intolerance is intolerance from whichever side, faith, belief or sexual preference.

Should a Vegetarian or Vegan who holds meat to be 'murder' and meat eating to be inmoral - not have a choive to go to a Vegetarian restaurant? Must vegetarian restaurants serve meat?

Meat restaurants serve vegetarian dishes to attract customers, not because they are 'forced' to by any Law.

Some coffee shops do not have an 'alcohol' licence - some can't get one.
But should those who do not want an alcohol licence, be forced to serve alcohol on their premises???

Velvet Sacks said...

Quasar9, thanks for the information on the NHS. Sounds like your health care system has as many problems as ours does, just a different set of problems.

I got lost somewhere in the last half of your comment. I understand your point about exclusivity and the right to associate with whomever we please -- and not to associate with people we don't want to be with -- but I'm missing how this connects to the rights of gay people to marry. Or were you just giving these examples to demonstrate why doctors should be able to choose whom they wish to treat?

QUASAR9 said...

Hi Velvet,
I was partly trying to be tactful
People have different preferences
Not much point going round to a classical music concert and demanding the right to play loud rock.
Not much point in going to a soul or jazz club, and demanding the right to play loud rock, just because my preference is loud rock

If I like the rocky horror show - I don't expect churches to come preaching or demanding we change the script or costumes, equally I don't expect to go to churches and demand the right to stage the rocky horror show on the altar.

However if someone wants to dress as a pink elephant, or whatever other costume - that is their choice. Personally, panto never did it for me not even as a kid. But then again I was too busy watching Walt Disney - and animated cartoons.

and as I said before ...
In the UK it is now neccessary for at least two people (with incomes) to enter into a contract to get a mortgage. The bank or building society no longer care if these two people are married (civil or church) or whether they are same sex. It is a simple business transaction.

On your health insurance you should be able to nominate another person (spouse, child or lover) but the spouse is not the child, the child should not be the lover, and the lover is not always the spouse. Idem for pensions.

As long as you have a 'nominated' beneficiary for your health insurance and/or pension - it should be of little consequence that the named 'beneficiary' is a spouse, child or lover.

Sunflower Optimism said...

Hi Friends,

Thank you all for your varied comments. I unfortunately do not have the time to sort through and respond today, but I promise to within the next few days.

Q9 - very quickly - I'm not sure what your point is - are you saying that the government is correct in excluding a certain portion of the population from participating in a civil union with all the legal/financial benefits thereof?

Please be aware that I did not drag religious institutions into this discussion - I am not that brave, LOL. If one wants to belong to one of the religious "private clubs" I believe they need to follow the "club rules." I never said that religious institutions need to recognize gay unions - that is not for me to say. But as an American citizen, I feel I can speak to the civil union issue.

I was only speaking about the government's role in civil unions - and about how this country has so much more to worry about than denying benefits to gay people.

Thank you all for your opinions.

QUASAR9 said...

In the UK it is now neccessary for at least two people (with incomes) to enter into a contract to get a mortgage. The bank or building society no longer care if these two people are married (civil or church) or whether they are same sex. It is a simple business transaction.

On your health insurance you should be able to nominate another person (spouse, child or lover) but the spouse is not the child, the child should not be the lover, and the lover is not always the spouse. Idem for pensions.

As long as you have a 'nominated' beneficiary for your health insurance and/or pension - it should be of little consequence that the named 'beneficiary' is a spouse, child or lover.

-----------

Hi Sunflower, I think you should be able to nominate a beneficiary to your pension rights or health insurance rights regardless of whether you are married to the person or the same sex.

The argument was made that these are the 'rights' to which marriage entitles one.

My argument is that some people would probably rather pass these rights on to a friend or lover, rather than to a person who they are married to, but no longer love.

Yet they are discriminated against unless they first divorce the one, and marry their 'new' love.

It would be far simpler if you could just change the named beneficiary on your health or pension policy - like you are free to do with your will & last testament. Though of course this will always open up a can of worms, re: the mental state or condition of the person when making any changes to a will

Sunflower Optimism said...

Rev. Kate, I wasn’t aware of why the clergy took over the civil function of marrying folks. Thanks for the lesson – I was a math/science person – the history never had a chance, went right over my head. In NJ, where I got married, the government issued the civil license. Of course, that didn’t count in my parent’s eyes and I could not move in with fiancĂ© until AFTER church ceremony! LOL

Dr. John – I hope you didn’t get fined too many times! Yep, let the churches handle it whichever way they see fit, I have to agree.

Simon – thanks so much for stopping by – and the link is much appreciated! Glad you liked the photos – I try to do it all here, beauty, fluff and social justice, LOL.

Sunflower Optimism said...

Quasar – I do believe you are light-years ahead of what I would like to see happen in the US! Please bear with me as I try to understand your comments and let me know if I am misinterpreting.

From your first comment, I gather that some sort of civil union contract between partners is recognized in the UK. Does this extend to same sex couples also, or only heterosexual couples? When you discuss the “exclusivity” issues I’m not sure what you are trying to say with the examples. Are you using them as an analogy to why religious institutions should not be forced to bless same sex unions? If you are, then I agree with you - I never said that religious institutions should be forced to bless same sex unions if it is against their basic tenets. Rev. Kate’s religion allows same sex blessings – my church never would. I may not agree with my church but I have to respect her “rules” if I want to remain a member. No one is forcing me to remain a member –it’s “take it – the way it is - or leave it.” There is enough that I like about my church that makes me want to stay. In my post I never said that any religious organization was bound to accept and bless a same sex union; I was more concerned with the civil rights aspects of a same sex union and about my government "defending" me from same.

In your second comment, I am a little confused about the NHS reference. Again, is this a comment touching on perhaps what you thought was my position on religious blessing of same sex unions? To reiterate, I do not believe that religious institutions need to change to accommodate something that is not accepted within their beliefs. Although there is much merit in what a friend of mine says about having a religion “that meets people where they are and invites them into deep relationship with God.” But that, in itself, is enough for a whole other post – by someone ELSE, thank you!

As for the unscrupulous “doctor” performing unneeded mastectomies – well, he is just a run-of-the-mill criminal in my book, in any country.

Your other examples, of two persons needed for a mortgage and being able to name any beneficiary on an insurance policy confuse me. This is where you are light-years ahead of me! I understand your thoughts on being able to name ANY beneficiary and it is probably a laudable future goal – but that was not the point of my post. I would just settle for two people, regardless of gender, being able to obtain a civil license that gives them all the rights and benefits of what we now consider a “married” couple. Rights, such as pensions, health insurance, tax code benefits, healthcare proxies, etc – as well as the right to be recognized as a “couple” by the world at large.

Then you have a lot of examples where you discuss a certain part of the population (non-smokers, vegans, etc.) holding the other part of the population (smokers, omnivores, etc.) “hostage” and “forcing” them to comply with their needs. I’m not sure how this relates to the civil union of gay or straight couples that I was discussing.

Agree 100% as you say “Intolerance is intolerance from whichever side, faith, belief or sexual preference.” To me, intolerance is unacceptable.
I also absolutely agree with you that freedom begins with respecting the freedom of others – unless your freedom impinges on another’s. A fine example is the “freedom” to smoke in the workplace – however, this “freedom” produces second hand smoke, which has been documented to negatively affect the health of others. I think in this case the freedom to smoke in the workplace may be legally curtailed. However, I do not believe it may be curtailed in a private “smoker’s club.” But I digress again - as interesting as this freedom issue is, it was not the focus of my post.

In your 3rd post, I understand the point you are making about not forcing one’s opinions on others – but not sure how that relates to my post about allowing civil unions between any two consenting adults.

In your 4th post, I understand your thoughts about being able to name any beneficiary – but I don’t think that relates to the concept I am trying to convey, which is that my government should extend equal rights to ALL couples - instead of "defending" me from same sex unions. Actually, I do believe that we have the right to name any beneficiary we want, in the US. A friend of mine was widowed and found out her husband had forgotten to change the beneficiary on his life insurance policy from his ex-wife, to her. The court sided with the ex-wife and awarded her the proceeds of his life insurance – leaving my friend, and their two babies, without anything. He hated his ex-wife and never had children with her – this was truly just a stupid oversight on his part. Anyway, naming a beneficiary is only one of the many legal/financial/emotional aspects of a legally united couple.

Ok, that’s all I have for today. I have to get back to my life, LOL. Kat, Velvet and Starbender, please don’t begrudge me a little more time to work on this. My poor, arthritic fingers are killing me!

CreekHiker said...

Sunflower,

I loved what you had to say. I've had lots of gay friends over the years. Many of them struggled so much coming out, facing parents and bosses who were bigots.

One, a man I could've married... if I were his type, really struggled with the idea that God made him (He was raised in the Bible Belt) and yet his whole existence was viewed as sinful. He is one of the kindest people I've ever known.

I think the point about the insurance that Velvet was making was that the Insurance Cos. would lose money insuring two marrieds as opposed to two singles. But the man I just mentioned lives in San Francisco where companies there readily insure "co-habitants" at the same rate as married couples.

I personally think it is just bigotry and ignorance that makes the Prez. and others in the right wing think that allowing gays to marry is somehow harming marriage as we know it.

Anyway, well said. Thanks for such an interesting post!

QUASAR9 said...

"Actually, I do believe that we have the right to name any beneficiary we want, in the US. A friend of mine was widowed and found out her husband had forgotten to change the beneficiary on his life insurance policy from his ex-wife, to her. The court sided with the ex-wife and awarded her the proceeds of his life insurance – leaving my friend, and their two babies, without anything. He hated his ex-wife and never had children with her – this was truly just a stupid oversight on his part. Anyway, naming a beneficiary is only one of the many legal/financial/emotional aspects of a legally united couple."

Hi Sunflower, that is the point I was trying to address. Some people think (or claim) that legal recognition of something is a 'magic' wand and cure for everything.

"The court sided with the ex-wife and awarded her the proceeds of his life insurance – leaving my friend, and their two babies, without anything. He hated his ex-wife and never had children with her – this was truly just a stupid oversight on his part."

Now this is an example when the person was 'married(?)' to the one he loved - yet his ex-wife was the beneficiary(?)

Perhaps if we had decent housing, decent health care and pensions for everybody regardless of whether 'married or wed' 'unmarried or unwed' same sex or not, single (and not interested in married "bliss")...

then we would not need to make such an almighty fuss about 'civil unions' and or 'partnerships'

After all we spent years even generations trying to prevent discrimination against 'unwed' couples, and/or separated or divorced couples before that.

Sunflower Optimism said...

Exactly right, Kat. Why deny these couples the same rights we enjoy? I don’t get it.

Sunflower Optimism said...

Velvet, not sure if it is the health industry and $$$, pure homophobia, or strong religious conviction of a part of our population. . . or something else. I just don’t see what the big deal is. It doesn’t matter to me at all that a couple is same sex or not, I can’t understand why they are denied equal rights under the law – and I certainly don’t want anyone’s rights abridged on MY behalf!

Sunflower Optimism said...

Starbender, thank you for the links and reminder. You are right, the words “separation between Church & State” never made it into the Constitution or Declaration of Independence. However, no less a person than Thomas Jefferson, the principal author of our Declaration of Independence authored the phrase while President.

I thought I would excerpt from your wikipedia link (above, if anyone would like to read whole article - I'm not good with links):

The phrase separation of church and state is a common interpretation of the Establishment Clause of the First Amendment, which reads, "Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof . . . ." The phrase was popularized by Thomas Jefferson in an 1802 letter to the Danbury Baptists. The phrase itself does not appear in any founding American document, but it has been quoted in opinions by the United States Supreme Court.

Thomas Jefferson's response, dated January 1, 1802, concurs with the Danbury Baptists' views on religious liberty, and the accompanying separation of civil government from concerns of religious doctrine and practice. Quoting the First Amendment of the United States Constitution, he writes: "...I contemplate with sovereign reverence that act of the whole American people which declared that their legislature should 'make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof,' thus building a wall of separation between Church & State."


In view of the fact that the phrase originated with Jefferson, has been in use in this country for over 200 years and has been used and quoted by branches of our government, I stand by my original decision to call it “part of the fabric of our country.”

From the Bill of Rights - First Amendment:

Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances.

Basically, our Bill of Rights is telling us that the First Amendment prohibits the establishment of a national religion by Congress or the preference of one religion over another, or religion over non-religion.

I never stated that religious belief should be in any way discouraged or done away with! I am a card carrying Christian and although there are many things I disagree with in my church, if anyone tried to shut it down I would be in the front lines defending it. However, if President Bush is using “sacred” in the religious sense, then he is using his bully pulpit as President to promote his own personal beliefs to the American people, in defiance of the First Amendment that prohibits the preference of one religion over another. He has every right to make such comments while a private citizen; he has no right to make these comments as President of the United States, speaking on my behalf. He is President of everyone in this great nation – straight and gay.

If he is not using the word “sacred” in a religious sense, then the rest of my argument stands. I would still like to know why the President feels so strongly that I need defending from same sex couples – when in all honesty I have no problem with it. I have yet to catch the cooties from any gay friends, LOL.

Although equality for gay couples was the focus of my post I hope I cleared up exactly what I meant with my reference to the “separation of church and state.” Thank you for posting your thoughts on that side issue, as I learned a lot about the context of our country’s early history.

Sunflower Optimism said...

Thanks for the visit, Creekhiker. You know, come to think of it, the company my husband works for also extends equal benefits to same sex couples. That doesn't seem to have caused a major upheaval in my marriage.

Being discriminated against is no fun. I can attest to that as the sole female engineer in a company of about 1000 engineers, some 30 years ago. Also as the mom of a child with disabilities who went through school mostly on the fringes of social groups and even subjected to ostracism.

It's a heart breaking thing and so totally unnecessary. If everyone followed the Golden Rule - you know it - "Do unto others as you would have others do unto you," the world would be a kinder, happier place.

Sunflower Optimism said...

Quasar9, thanks for all your attempts to get your message through my thick skull; I think it finally worked, LOL. You are looking at a much bigger picture, a scenario of equality beyond the scope of my original post.

From your comment ". . . that is the point I was trying to address. Some people think (or claim) that legal recognition of something is a 'magic' wand and cure for everything."

I agree - same sex civil union is not a cure-all. But it is a starting point. It is allowing part of the citizenry to have access to the same rights as the rest. God knows, marriage is not a silver bullet for heterosexual couples either! However, I think equality for all is a good place to start.

I think you are speaking of a beautiful utopia - with enough food, health care, education, shelter and other basics - for every single human on this planet. It is a wonderful dream and I hope it becomes a reality before we blow ourselves up.

For now, I will tackle just one tiny little issue at a time, as it comes at me. With this post it was equal rights for gay couples and their families.

Sunflower Optimism said...

With that my friends, I hope I have answered any concerns satisfactorily.

Of course, more comments are always welcome, especially if you believe I have misinterpreted something you have said. But please give me until after the weekend to answer - lots going on in the next few days!

QUASAR9 said...

Hi Sunflower,
I did get the message of your post
and I also enjoyed the back and fro, the exploring beyond a simple yes or no.

DaveM said...

Its Bush we need to be protected from...........ahhhhhhhh...that man!

Sunflower Optimism said...

Yes, Quasar9, I've also enjoyed the "thoughts expressed, traversed, addressed." A learning experience, all around. Now if we could only get EVERYONE in the world to do that instead of picking up a gun and blasting the next person's head off. . . someday, huh?

Dave - we're working on that, we really are!

Anonymous said...

Great post. I agree with your comments on every word. Loved your blog also!!

Sunflower Optimism said...

Thanks for visiting, Sunil - not sure how you found me, but glad you did :-)

Your blog's not half bad either! I have a special fondness for art/science combo blogs - having a degree in engineering, but now working in the arts.

The Artist said...

What a great blog. Have enjoyed reading the lively discussion, best wishes, The Artist

Ordinary Janet said...

I read somewhere that someone says, "why shouldn't gays be as miserable as the rest of us?". I don't see why gays shouldn't be allowed to marry. I think the problem is humans feel threatened by anything different, anything outside the "accepted sphere of normalcy". Good post!

Sunflower Optimism said...

A visit from The Artist is always appreciated. Thanks for reading - I know this was quite a lengthy one. Your blog is lovely - great ideas and paintings.

Janet, you are too funny!

I still don't understand how someone else's relationship could affect mine and I don't understand why gay couples are so dangerous that I need protection from them. Kind of overblown and silly to me.

Perhaps a red herring to detract from the war, the elections, failure of NCLB, lack of healthcare for the poor (especially children), failure to do anything for the homeless, damage to the environment, dependance on oil - have I mentioned terrorist threats yet? - the corruption in Congress. . .

GoGo said...

Thanks for your words. I appreciate folks who speak out.

And thanks for visiting my blog. I think I might come around here again to see what your up to.

Peace,

gg