Realities Created, Maintained and Destroyed, WHILE-U-WAIT!

Saturday, April 09, 2005

The First Amendment of the Constitution of the United States

Which is also the beginning of the bill of rights, tells us this.

Amendment I

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.
One thing that I haven't seen in the debate about who can and cannot get married is the first amendment questions.

Is marriage a religious sacrament or is it a civil contract?

If it is a religious sacrament then the State really has no place making laws about who can get married. If it is a civil contract then what are all the various churches doing trying to tell us who can get married?

I have never seen the subject of marriage address at this level, but here in the States there is no area I have seen where either the State is messing with religious freedom, or where religion is dictating the policies of the State.

So if marriage is a religious sacrament, then the various right wing fundamentalist Christians trying to turn their definition of marriage into law are way out of line and any marriage laws should be challenged on constitutional grounds.

All religions should be allowed to define marriage in whatever way they want and the government should keep its hands off.

This would solve the "problem" of Gay marriage, polygamy, polyandry, and everything else. The various religions, as recognized under chapter 501 of the IRS code should be able to make their own rules.

(Of course you know that this is how we define religion here in the states, by a group's standing with the IRS)

If marriage is a secular contract, then the various religions should have no legal standing when it comes to marriage ceremonies. As a matter of fact, all non-civil marriages should be declared null and void. (If you want to talk "marriage license" just remember that if you get married in any state by a preacher of any sort without one the marriage will still be considered valid)

There is no other place in American law where Church and State are so mixed up in each other's business.

The really troubling thing is that the form of marriage being forced on everyone is "Christian" marriage. The US refuses to recognize anything that does not conform to "Christian" values as marriage.

This seems to me to be a clear violation of the first amendment. I wonder why no one wants to discuss this.

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