Posts Tagged gay rights
I’ve been thinking back over the many debates that took place here at OneUtah and elsewhere during the fight over California’s Prop 8. An argument I heard over and over from church members supporting Prop 8 was that legal precedents that applied in racial, sex, and religious discrimination cases did not apply for gays, and that gays could not be recognized as a protected class or group. I didn’t follow that arbitrary and twisted logic then and I don’t follow it now.
Today I reread the church’s statement to the Salt Lake City Council, there is no doubt in my mind that the church recognizes those with same-sex attraction as a distinct identifiable group entitled to the same legal protections the rest of society enjoys with regard to housing and employment. And the church specifically names this group rather than using a broad generic “all residents of the city” or something similar that would have been more palatable to the anti-gay crowd.
On the church’s own web site, the headline is “Church Supports Nondiscrimination Ordinances”.
The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints has declared its support of nondiscrimination regulations that would extend protection in matters of housing and employment in Salt Lake City to those with same-sex attraction. [snip]
The Church said that while protections in housing and employment were fair and reasonable, the Church also remains “unequivocally committed to defending the bedrock foundation of marriage between a man and a woman.” Otterson also pointed out that this position was “entirely consistent with the Church’s prior position on these matters.”
Otterson added, “I represent a church that believes in human dignity, in treating others with respect even when we disagree — in fact, especially when we disagree.”
I think this is the biggest and most important change in this milestone announcement—that the church does recognize gays as an identifiable group in need of special legal protections. Even though the church stopped short of supporting full and equal rights for gays, this step is extremely important and paves the way for setting of new legal precedents that may eventually break down all barriers to full and equal rights under the law—including marriage.
He makes it too darn easy. He just opens his mouth, and we have ALL KINDS OF STUFF to write about. Give a listen.
Of course, I have to watch this documentary when it comes out. I just want to see him saying:
They’re the meanest buggers I’ve ever seen.
(Did he really say buggers?)
What is the morals of a gay person? You can’t answer that because anything goes.
They’re probably the greatest threat to America going down I know of.
Um. Threat to what?
Earlier today there was a video posted on YouTube, part of the Cowen interview, in which Buttars brings up the topic of “Pig Sex”. The video has been taken down now, but I did see it before it was removed. Buttars says gays engage in pig sex but he refuses to say on camera what that is. The interviewer looks it up and reads the definition. Buttars is dissatisfied as the definition is not explicit enough to suit him. Here‘s the definition from Urban Dictionary which sounds like the one read by the interviewer.
(UPDATE: Video is back up, so here it is)
And finally, I have to ask what so many others are asking tonight: Why doth Buttars protest so much?
According to a poll (SLTrib), 56 percent of Utahns want to see gay couples have more rights where it comes to legal protections in their relationships. They stop short of condoning gay marriage, but there may be some real support for bills coming up in the next legislative session. The bills known as “The Common Ground Initiative” include the following five bills:
The Common Ground Initiative aims to pass 5 bills
During the 2009 legislative session, Equality Utah and other gay-rights advocates hope to pass five bills enhancing protections for gay and transgender people:
Fair housing and employment » Make it illegal, through two separate bills, to fire an employee or evict a tenant for being gay or transgender. Sponsor: Rep. Christine Johnson, D-Salt Lake City.
Probate rights » Allow an unmarried partner or other financially dependent relative to sue in the event of a wrongful death. Sponsor: Sen. Scott McCoy, D-Salt Lake City.
Domestic-partner rights » Create a statewide domestic-partner registry that would provide rights of inheritance, insurance and fair housing. Sponsor: Rep. Jennifer Seelig, D-Salt Lake City.
Repeal a portion of Amendment 3 » Eliminate the second part of Utah’s constitutional gay-marriage ban to avoid confusion about what protections are the legal equivalent of marriage. Sponsor: Rep. Jackie Biskupski, D-Salt Lake City.
My gay friends have long-term stable relationships. They own homes together, they share all the same ups and downs of any married couple. I find it impossible to fathom that anyone who might know these people would want to deny them every protection under the law the rest of the populace enjoys.
Of course, the real test as to whether or not any of these bills will pass or fail depends on what the Mormon church has to say about it.