Arts at stake in marriage vote

January 15, 2014
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While I'm worried about Indiana's arts future should it pass, I don’t have a whole lot new to add to the argument against the definition of marriage amendment.

Others have noted, historically, that trying to tell same-sex couples that they can’t marry is the equivalent of telling interracial couples that they can’t marry. And we know how those proponents now look through the lens of history.

Others have noted, wisely, that formally defining marriage as only possible between one man and one woman will put Indiana at an economical disadvantage to more forward-thinking states. Any company considering moving here will have to weigh this bigotry into its decision making.

Others have noted, smartly, that such an amendment would encourage even more of a brain drain on the state as young people seek meaningful work in a more welcoming atmosphere elsewhere.

Others have noted, Biblically, that if you believe the scriptures should be the rulebook for marriage then you also should be arguing in favor of concubines, forced marriages of slaves by slave owners, submission by prisoners of war, and the marriage of rapists to their victims.

Others have noted, sarcastically, that if you are against gay marriage, don’t get gay married.

Nobody has made the case, effectively, that gay marriage poses any threat whatsoever to opposite-sex marriage. And so what if it did? Computer games and strip clubs pose threats to traditional marriage but we don't ban them. Instead, we encourage people to take responsibility for their own actions. Ain't that America?

Others have noted, clearly, that the amendment, if passed, is likely to be turned over by the Supreme Court.

All I can add, I suppose, is that the fact that Indiana is even considering such an amendment hurts. It hurts my love for this state. It hurts my respect for its government.

It makes me wonder if I would have considered moving here 18 years ago if Indiana were so publicly swimming against the tide of the positive evolution of human rights.

And it makes me concerned about the future of the arts in the state given the strength and importance of gay artists and administrators and their supporters in creating a vibrant A&E culture here. I cannot imagine the state without them…but I’d completely understand if they left should this amendment pass.

  • Bravo
    Bravo Lou on the great column. Agree with you 100%.
  • Against the tide
    I try to respect the opinions of those who see themselves taking a principled position that reflects their religious beliefs on this issue, but Indiana is truly swimming against the tide of history in contemplating this action, particularly for the next generation we need to retain in the state if we hope to have a vibrant economy decades from now. And for what as Lou Harry aptly questions. You look at the states already allowing same sex marriage or civil unions and they seem to be just fine.
  • with you
    Had similar thoughts moving to rural PA. But, someone has to be in the vanguard. You have more company in Indy than you may realize. Time is taking care of the rest as pro gay marriage correlates with youth. The opposition is literally dying.
  • Gay Marriage
    The tide of public opinion does appear to be slightly shifting in favor of supporting gay marriage. But, that doesn't make gay marriage right and it doesn't mean folks like me that oppose gay marriage are hateful bigots. It's a shame folks supporting gay marriage wrongly portray the opposition as such. In other words, hate is not the issue yet it is wrongly being used as a tool to attempt to shame those that oppose gay marriage. Also, it's surprising Lou put forth such misguided Biblical interpretations at paragraph 5 of his article. Good grief Lou, that is a weak attempt at discrediting the Bible.
    • Response to Tony:
      Nowhere in Lou's article did he mention hate. That's your wording, not his. As for the cafeteria- style biblical law adherence, the rules Lou mentioned are all listed in the good book. So, the bible isn't a good defense for how wrong gay marriage is, except for hypocritical arguments. If you don't believe gay marriage is right, how does it actually affect you wrongly? No one is asking you to marry a same-gender lifemate. But for those who have partnered for life with someone they love, how could any rational adult deny them the same protections under civil law that straight couples enjoy (or are punished by)? Gay couples exist. This isn't about pushing homosexuality on hetero people. But not recognizing gay unions legally is discriminatory. Indiana can either get progressive or continue hiding its head in the sand and pretending that inequality is acceptable.
      • Agree but...
        First, let me start off by saying I am a gay man. My partner and I have been together for nearly 15 years. We have never really talked about getting "married" so to speak. I guess I feel like we already are in a way. I dont need a piece of paper to tell me we are officially together. In our eyes, that is a given. So while I am for Indiana getting into the 21st century and supporting gay marriage as an increasing majority of states now recognize, it is not the end-all/be-all for us. I am not so sure Indiana's failure to recognize gay marriage will cause the "brain drain" that so many fear. I think there is a substantial gay population here (just look at the recent HUGE turnouts for IndyPride. It is pleasantly surprising to see such large crowds in supposedly conservative Indianapolis) I would bet there is a small minority of gay couples that rate getting officially married as their number one priority. Would it be nice to be able to freely in Indiana some day? Sure. Is it the number one thing on my plate on a daily basis..not exactly. I do not feel disciminated against in Indiana because of my sexual orientation. Not in the least. If we can someday get married..great..but I won't be losing sleep over this.
        • Key Point
          Lou mentions a key point that I think could use even more emphasis: "Nobody has made the case, effectively, that gay marriage poses any threat whatsoever to opposite-sex marriage." Like Lou, I have not come across any such case. In the absence of a compelling argument that our society is somehow worse because of gay marriage (and would somehow be improved were it illegal), those of us on the other side are left to wonder what is motivating the people who support a ban? I honestly don't know, but the possibilities that come to mind break my heart.
          • Biblical Interpretations
            "Lou put forth such misguided Biblical interpretations at paragraph 5 of his article." Tony, do you realize that it is misguided Biblical interpretations that have caused this hate filled amendment to get as far as it has?
          • 2 thoughts
            My first is to Tony. It seems as though you are adopting a "love the sinner, hate the sin" mentality in regards to the marriage debate. However, sadly, our government is not in business to accommodate sin or morality. For example, "though shall not till" is a prominent tenant to many religions. Yet our government ensures our right to bear arms and does nothing to limit automatic weapons to people that use them for the wrong reason. Now that being said, bringing it back to relationships, most religious institutions frown upon divorce and deem it morally reprehensible. Despite religious opinion, the government has agreed that people should have the right to divorce. No one seems to be complaining too much about that -- a real threat to marriage, isn't divorce marriage's exact opposite? People have been able to compartmentalize their personal and/or spiritual and/or religious beliefs aside and accept the legality of divorce. This is what needs to happen here. While you may disagree with gay marriage, but you cannot disregard it's legality on any solid ground. You seem to like gays, but hate gay marriage. You can still disagree with it, but not have to limit the rights of an entire country. Secondly, speaking of rights. Rick. I beg you to reconsider your opinion on the passing of discriminative legislation into Indiana law. No one seems to consider the status of gay relationships when everything is fine. However, when the proverbial poop hits the fan is when we see the true benefits of being partners under the law. In theory only, you would have no right to see your partner if her were to end up in intensive care at the hospital. Further (again, theory only), if your partner were to die, you have no rights to any money or property that you think you share. You will not have any rights to any pensions or widower rights if they are to pass. Also, if you have children, be careful who they belong to, because semantics will be your worst enemy in light of tragedy. Now, I may be way off base regarding your relationship and your personal opinions of the marriage institution. If I am, I apologize and I encourage you to share the knowledge to anyone that's on the fence.
          • reject politics of fear from both sides
            Big government "conservatives" need to stop obsessing over gays, who make up a mere 2-3% of the population. Gays need to rise above their self-defeating victim mentality and enjoy life. Democrats need to stop whipping up fear among gays (and other minority groups) to gain votes. All of us must reject cynical, fear-based politics. I'm gay and am sick of this shiny-object issue. There's bigger things to worry about- like our privacy rights being stripped by our government.
          • Arts at stake
            Indeed they are!! Bravo Lou!
          • Agree
            I agree Lou! I ama concerned about the brain drain for not only Indy but the state as well. We are making some strides in some key industries and we need to keep the momentum. And as Rick pointed out, the turned out the past few years for Pride is indeed getting larger but I do if this bill passes it's going to hurt.
          • comparing homosexuality to racism
            In your article, you compare a homosexual relationship to an "interracial" relationship. Homosexuality is a behavior. Skin color is an inherited trait. Someone choses homosexuality - they don't chose their skin color. There's only one race, the human race. Since we're all descended from Adam & Eve, the differences between the supposed races are a matter of pigmentation. Therein lies the crux of this discussion. If we were all evolved from a big bang, then there would be no morality, no purpose & why would anyone believing that even bother to argue for their "rights" when they believe they're going to be worm-food soon anyway - and it's all meaningless. Since in fact however, we are created in God's image and have a moral responsibility to Him, then this matters. He doesn't instruct against homosexuality because He hates people. He instructs against homosexuality because, having created them, He loves people and knows what's best for them.
          • Proof of choose
            "Someone chooses homosexuality". Please give proof of this not from the Bible. Anything from the Bible is subjective since the "author" refuses to give guidance one way or another. For all you know, you are interpreting it all wrong.
            • gay marriage
              I believe that both state and local governments needs to get out of our lives as much as possible. They don't need to be in our bedrooms, in our pockets. Telling us how to raise our children or educate them. They need to protect us and build roads, then get the hell out of the way. Both Federal and Local governments have strongly overstepped their bounds and OUR rights.
            • To A different Tony
              A different Tony, why do you care about what people do that aren't part of your religion. They are going to hell anyway right? Their actions only hurt themselves. Why do you need to control them against their will? What if Scientology wants laws based on their beliefs, would that be OK also?
            • Different Tony
              You do realize that those Biblical references to race were the justification for outlawing racial intermarriage, right? And now, here you are, using race to defend your homophobia. Oh, the irony.
              • Do something!
                Your apathy is the reason amendments like this pass. It should be the be-all end-all issue for you! You've been together for 15 years and don't want the tax and legal benefits of marriage. How about the fact that when he's dying and in the hospital, his family could keep you away from his bedside because you are not family (you would be if you were married). It is discrimination, plain and simple. If you don't mind being discriminated that's fine, but it is irresponsible for you to tell other gays that it's no big deal. Go ahead and drink the Kool-aid if you want to. Don't offer it to the rest of us!
              • In defense of Marriage
                I believe the entire debate is being framed in an improper context. What is the debate really about? It really is about a definition. Webster's defines marriage as: the state of being united to a person of the opposite sex as husband or wife in a consensual and contractual relationship recognized by law. I agree with that definition. To alter that definition because it is no longer convenient is wrong. We won't redefine a sidewalk and call it a footpath. They may be the same essentially but they are indeed diferent I am opposed to the position it is just a word, or times change or any other of a hundred arguments all of them invalid to me. Marriage is an important word to a lot of people. The word alone sparks harsh words and vicious debate. What people want, so I'm told, is equal protectio and equal rights. That can be accoplished by a "civil union". You get that, call it that, be happy with that, it should recognize the same protections as a marriage. It will protect our definition of marriage we will be fine. Many look at this redefinition of marriage as an attack of the very core of our Judeo-Christian values. I tend to agree. I have a brother who was married to his partner in California. I was invited to attend and declined. I declined because I will not be hypocritical to my own beliefs. They are entitled to a happy healthy life together and I wish them well. We see each other often and it is not an issue. Is it a marriage? Not to me. Are they a couple most certainly. Are they entitled to equal protection of benefits? Absolutely. The compromise really is there. The absolute position being taken by the those opposing traditional marrige leaves no room for compromise. This is the last line of defense for many who want to preseve values and common sense. I understand the arguments, I just don't agree it must be all or nothing.
                • And
                  Maybe one of the Tonys can help me out. Why gays? The Bible forbids all kinds of stuff - tattoos, shellfish, a nice poly-cotton blend, divorce (!) - why do gays get the wrath of amendments and protests and trappings of state-enforced religion? This whole discussion should be as ridiculous as a group of Hassidic Jews trying to outlaw shaving, but yet here we are, talking about restricting fellow Americans' rights in deference to the choice some people made to follow a particular religion. I thought we covered this back in the 1770's...
                • Oh Kevin
                  Leaving aside the sad fact that you alienate family members over your homophobia, you also need to read the legislation you're rooting for as you clearly have zero idea what it actually says. I'm not doing your homework for you and it seems like reading a little more would do you endless good.
                  • Sam's question about choice
                    Sam, An individual choses to engage in homosexuality as someone may chose celibacy, promiscuity or heterosexuality. Would you argue that someone is born celibate and they just can't change that? Of course not. This is a question of actions and responsibility. Presumably you would be opposed to someone having sex with a child or an animal or forcing someone else to have sex with them via rape. If we're all just evolved from slime, why would any of those actions be wrong? Similarly why would murder be wrong? (You know innately that those actions are wrong because your Creator placed inside you a conscience.) There's no logical argument against such any action if it's not founded in the understanding that we have a Creator who has communicated to us His moral expectations of us. Your comment effectively says both a) "Let's keep The Bible out of the discussion" and b) "The Bible doesn't provide guidance on the matter. If The Bible were untrue, then, in light of the brevity of life, why waste any of your time having this discussion when you could be out fulfilling whatever desire you could imagine? Since The Bible is God's Word and His revelation of Himself, His plan for us, and His expectations of us, then this discussion is important because people are morally responsible for their actions and those actions produce consequences. Because God loves you, He wants good consequences for you.
                  • Gay marriage alone won't cause brain drain for many
                    but it could be the proverbial icing on the cake that causes GLBT prospective employees to take a pass on Indy. I've lived here 20 years and love it, but completely recognize that for some of the best and brightest, Indiana as a state (and even Indy as its capital)lack many of the amenities (natural or manufactured) that other states and Top 20 cities possess. If someone is already on the fence and has competing offers from more inclusive communities,it may be difficult to "close the sale" in moving to Indiana if our legislature unnecessarily enshrines in out state Constitution a limitation on their rights, particularly when it would seem we are regressing when other states are progressing. And marriage as an institution is probably one of the most conservative ones around as many Republicans supporting same sex marriage in other states have articulated quite clearly. Interesting that they've come to a position that their Indiana political counterparts have not.
                  • homophobia
                    Phobia means fear. You're endeavoring to characterize my comments as being fearful of homosexuals, which is inaccurate. Similarly, you're accusing me of using race to justify that fear. My argument was that there's no such thing as multiple races - we're all one race, the human race.
                  • So wait...
                    I, for one, do not recall ever having to "choose" being heterosexual but apparently Tony does. Isn't that interesting?
                    • Really?
                      Homophobia? Really? I hardly think so. You are entitled to throw disparaging remarks around. You don't know me. How shallow. Alienate who? We are family, despite what you would like to believe we are all good. I won't defend the legislation. I don't like it. I do however like it better than the alternative.
                    • being vs. doing
                      This isn't a question of being. It's a question of doing. The issue being discussed is behavior, not essence.
                    • Let me make it simpler.
                      That "difference in pigmentation" that you mention in the Bible is a reference to the very same scriptures that were once used to justify outlawing interracial marriage. And now you're attempting to use the Bible in exactly the same manner. Remember, the country had these discussions (using almost identical language) in the 60's, only it was "black" instead of "gay." Does that help?
                      • See folks
                        Kevin is why people don't want this issue to go before the voters. He doesn't know what the legislation says and can't be bothered to read it. He just knows that he has some vague religious objection that he can't articulate and that's all that matters to him. That is NOT the sort of mindset we should allow to vote on the rights of other American citizens.
                      • skin color and marriage
                        Boiling it down as simply as possible here - Men of any skin color should be able to marry women of any skin color because we're all one race. Men should not marry men because they're the same gender. Genesis 1:27-28a 27 So God created man in his own image, in the image of God created he him; male and female created he them. 28 And God blessed them, and God said unto them, Be fruitful, and multiply, and replenish the earth... God's very first directive to humankind was to be fruitful and multiply and replenish the earth. That only happens through heterosexuality.
                      • Hmm Tony
                        I missed the part in my marriage license (from the STATE) that spells out the pre-condition of children. Since we're apparently changing the subject from the Biblical foundation of outlawing interracial marriage...
                        • Compassion and tolerance for all
                          The state of Indiana should not be sanctioning marginalization and prejudice against any group of people, whether it is because of sexual orientation, race, gender, religion, or any other reason. If you don't believe in gay marriage, fine. You are entitled to your belief. But you are not entitled to force your interpretation of the Bible down my throat through needless legislation. Young, educated adults like myself prefer to live in a society that shows tolerance and compassion to all its members. And legislation like this is the reason I questioned returning home after graduate school and one reason I still consider leaving several years later.
                        • thanks
                          Just a note of thanks to all for keeping the conversation civil. Continue...
                        • homosexuality and children
                          If your parents were engaging in homosexuality instead of heterosexuality, you wouldn't be here.
                          • huh?
                            Tony: If his parents had opted to be Catholic priests or certain kinds of monks or opted to stay single for other reasons, he wouldn't be here either. That doesn't make those actions wrong.
                            • God's design for sexuality
                              You're correct that The Bible doesn't condemn celibacy. One of the primary purposes for God's design of human sexuality though was reproduction. His plan includes producing a race of worshippers to bring Him glory. Homosexuality is a rebellion against that plan. God's design of marriage and sexuality for one man and one woman for life is a picture of Christ and the church. You can read about this in Ephesians 5. The commitment and submission to God's plan that's described there is to be lived out as a beautiful picture of God's sacrificial love for humankind. The husband is to love the wife in such a way that he would be willing to die for her (as Christ died for us). The wife is to submit to her husband in such a way as to illustrate how we humans are to submit to God. This truth will sound preposterous to many in our society today, but in fact it's at the heart of what marriage and sex are about. It's a beautiful thing when understood and practiced according to God's design. We share this not to harm or disparage those who believe differently, but in hopes that they'll see the truth - that there is purpose to life - that God loves you and that He created you and desires an eternal relationship with you.
                            • tony tony tony
                              "One of the primary purposes for God's design of human sexuality though was reproduction. His plan includes producing a race of worshippers to bring Him glory. Homosexuality is a rebellion against that plan." If this is your reason, where is the amendment to forbid celibacy? Celibacy would be rebelling against the plan also. That has the same effect to god's plan as homosexuality. I know I won't win this argument with you because you have the liberty to pick and choose the parts of the bible you want to follow while explaining away those you don't. No one has a problem if you chose to do that. We feel that all people should have the right to do that. We have a problem when you force your religious choices on others. We feel that all people should be allowed to marry the person that they chose no matter the skin color, gender or race. Let's hope that there are enough citizens in Indiana that do not want to force all Indiana citizens to follow a specific religion's rules.
                              • Sheesh
                                Arguing with religious people is like trying to get an IU fan to root for Purdue. Fortunately, it's just as irrelevant to the discussion at hand. Here's the bottom line, guys: Marriage is a civil right, conferred by legal statutes, most explicitly in Loving vs Virginia. At a wedding, one particular Judeo-Christian version of a higher power does not declare those two people to be married, the state government does. And, unless you want to change THAT definition of marriage, then individuals have no legal standing to deny that right to others based on sexual orientation any more than they had the right to deny it based on race before 1964. But, Indiana had to be forced by the Federal government to change those laws too, so here we go again, I guess. Kinda sad.
                              • celibacy is not rebellion
                                Sam, I Corinthians 7 explains that God is okay with celibacy. Leviticus 18 & Romans 1 explain that God is opposed to homosexuality. Indeed many an injustice has been done in the name of religion by those who intentionally or inadvertently take Scripture out of context and twist the meaning for their own purposes. Don't let that fact however deter you from reading it for yourself and allowing God to speak to you through it.
                                • tony
                                  not everyone believes in your god or your bible.
                                • Think about more than yourself
                                  Dear Rick, As a gay man in a bi-national relationship with my partner of 12 years, I need to ask you to think more broadly than just yourself in the matter of marriage equality. The only way my Scottish partner has been able to stay in the country for the past 12 years is by stringing along Masters degrees .. as a student. It has cost us enormously financially. While immigration is a federal issue - Indiana's position is forcing us to have to travel at great expense to another state to get married. I ask you to think of the culture created here by such legislation. You many not be affected as an adult - but young GLBT people are hit hard emotionally by all of this. Broaden your perspective on this, Rick - there's more at stake here than just your own situation.
                                • If I'm reading correctly
                                  After reading through this thread, does anyone have a reason why same-sex marriage should be illegal that isn't Biblical? I have yet to see one rational, logical, legal, or economic reason, just more quotes from the Bible.
                                • Could we get back to choice for a second?
                                  A question for straight people who believe homosexuality is a choice: could you choose to be gay? No straight people can say they haven't imagined what it would be like to be with a same-sex lover. But did those mental images disgust you to the core? Would having a same-sex partner seem unnatural, grotesque, and even impossible to you? In the same breath, could you claim you chose to be hetero? You DID NOT choose it, it's your only option. The other option would make you puke, right? Now consider that gays have the exact same aversion to the thought of having a hetero partner, that it's gross, unnatural, and vile to them. So then why can't you understand that gays don't choose their sexual orientation, either? They don't make a decision one day that they're going to change their preference to a same-sex partner. How could they? Why would they, when society has cast so many stones their way? Why would anyone in their right mind choose to do something that was repulsive to them? Attractions and sexual orientation are not something you can turn on and off, or can rationalize, or can force. They aren't learned--they're inherent. Some people are drawn to blondes, some prefer dating outside their race, and some only want obese partners. All those things might be gross to one person and a total turn-on to another. Why can't people accept that homosexuality is a very natural part of our world?
                                • Sandy
                                  The problem with HJR-3 is it also permanently bans the "civil union" status which you say is the obvious compromise between those favoring and those opposed to gay "marriage".
                                • To Ellen
                                  You are right, this proposed amendment is all about religion. It's up to the citizens of Indiana who care about everyone, with no exceptions, to make sure this amendment doesn't pass.
                                • The debate
                                  If the amendment passes and is added to our voting ballot in November, why is this even a debate? The people of Indiana get to decide how the State of Indiana recognizes marriage. Isn't that how social issues should be decided in a democracy? I personally hope that both sides would want this issue decided in the voting booth and not the Statehouse.
                                • #STOPHJR3
                                  Thank you Lou for your support against HJR3! I, too, am a proud Hoosier, but if this amendment passes, my partner and I will be relocating to another state where all citizens are treated equally and with respect.
                                • Civil Union
                                  If I understand you correctly, I think you've made the point quite eloquently that it is actually the terminology used in considering gay marriage and not the union. I am 100% in agreement that marriage is a union between a male and female. However, I feel gay men and women who choose to enter into a contractual relationship entitles them to the same legal benefits as marriage affords men and women who are involved in a traditional marriage. To me, it is just a matter of semantics. Why cannot there be "Civil Union" for "marriage" between gays that entitle them to exactly the same benefits? To me, it is a no brainer... I hate to think it has taken this long to recognize that same-sex relationships are no less valid than traditionally married adults and we need to legalize these committed relationships by recognizing them as "Legal Unions."
                                  • Mark
                                    I'm amazed that people are chomping at the bit for the opportunity to vote away the rights of other people. It's like they know nothing of history, the law, or the Constitution.
                                  • And Karen
                                    This legislation expressly forbids what you are suggesting. In fact, it outlaws even opposite sex couples having a contractual relationship approximating marriage. And, just for fun, it might even outlaw companies that already have domestic partnership agreements with their employees from honoring those agreements, hence the "clarifying" amendment a few days ago (that clarified exactly nothing).
                                    • Civil Union
                                      My comments were directly related to statements made by Kevin and his thoughts that marriage, as defined by Webster's Dictionary, is limited to a relationship between a man and woman.
                                    • Okay....
                                      So you agree with Kevin. That doesn't change the reality that this legislation not only doesn't do what you're suggesting, it goes even further. If people are going to demand the right to vote on this, they should know what they're voting for.
                                    • Civil Union
                                      Me. Thank you for enlightening me...I obviously need to study this bill in depth before I take a stand......guess I was trying to over-simplify the issue when it is not that simple at all....even though, IMHO, it should be.
                                    • Bigotry = Hate
                                      Inky, Lou's article uses the word bigotry which is akin to hate. In other words, if one is a bigot then the underlying reason for that bigotry must be hate. So, you are right that Lou did not expressly use the word "hate" but his use of bigotry is meant to convey the word hate. BTW, I am the original Tony that posted a few days ago and I am just now returning to read comments and I see someone else has been going by the name of Tony (or as he said "a different Tony"). I will call myself Tony I for simplicity's sake. Have a good afternoon Inky.
                                    • Unconstitutional
                                      It seems this proposed amendment is unconstitutional so if it is passed, it can be overturned. From the Indiana constitution: Section 4. No preference shall be given, by law, to any creed, religious society, or mode of worship; and no person shall be compelled to attend, erect, or support, any place of worship, or to maintain any ministry, against his consent. Since this amendment is only being supported for religious reasons, it violates section 4's "maintain any ministry".
                                      • Response to Clay
                                        Clay, I personally don't think that the reason folks oppose gay marriage is because it poses a direct threat to currently married heterosexual couples. Rather, in essence, those that oppose gay marriage fear that if gay marriage is allowed and viewed as a civil right then it's likely our gov't would forcefully compel Christian clergy to perform a marriage ceremony for a gay couple(s). To Christian clergy the marriage ceremony is a sacrament which is much much more than a mere contractual exchange of promises to love each other. Since clergy would refuse to misuse the sacrament in this way, our govt's response would likely be jail time....jail time that only ends when the sacramental marriage ceremony is performed which means jail time could be endless if clergy continues to refuse. That is of grave concern. No way our gov't should be able to compel sacramental use/ceremonies. So, having the govt force Christian clergy to perform a marriage ceremony is a real concern for many folks in our country. If I recall correctly from what I've heard on tv news, a strong majority of Americans support civil unions for gay couples. From what I can see, what the supporters of gay marriage clamor for isn't just civil unions -- they really want to compel Christian clergy to be forced to marry them. I think that is the heart of the matter in our state/country.
                                      • Sam's constitutional theory
                                        Sam, respectfully I say this -- you are not viewing that constitutional provision correctly. And yes, I did study constitutional law in law school -- not a fun topic but an important one. And if things continue as they are in our country, the US Constitution will continue to be rendered meaningless in our lives as today's progressives decide that this document no longer holds value/meaning/application to today's lifestyles.
                                      • Clergy?
                                        You mean like how the Catholic Church was forced to recognize divorce? Oh. That didn't happen. People on the religious right need to be very careful about blurring the lines between Church and State or you will inadvertently bring about the very thing you fear.
                                        • Tony...
                                          For someone who claims to have studied Constitutional law, I would expect your arguments to be more substantive and less based on opinion and slippery slope logical fallacies.
                                        • Me's divorce comment
                                          Me, you are wrong about the Catholic Church ("CC") recognizing divorce. Only the govt grants (and thus "recognizes") divorce, the CC is not bound by the govt's recognition of divorce. At most the CC determines a valid marriage never existed from the beginning(which is called an annullment) -- which is nothing like recognizing divorce. But, you are completely right about your words of caution about blurring the lines -- a good reminder for everyone.
                                        • Precisely
                                          That's exactly my point. Perhaps I was overly sarcastic. Even though the government recognizes divorce, the Catholic Church has never been forced to do the same, so why would you expect that churches be expected to one day recognize gay marriages?
                                          • Loving V Virginia
                                            Me, you seem to fancy yourself as wise and you are free to think that. I could maybe attempt to get into a lively debate with you regarding the details of Loving v Virginia but that would waist our time. The Court reached the right decision in that one -- it was indeed wrong of Virgina to make the criminality of the act depend upon the color of the actor. But, you are clearly misapplying that case to the current gay marriage debate here in Indiana. Maybe you should read that case again to clarify your thoughts -- but keep in mind most folks reading our comments want the "high level view" of constitutional discussions as opposed to getting "deep into the weeds".
                                          • Ah
                                            If you're going to insult my intelligence, you might want to check that you're using the correct form of "waste." It's interesting that you're content to tell everyone they're wrong in how they interpret established laws and legislature, but you can't articulate why. One would think that someone who has studied Constitutional law would have no trouble articulating his position.
                                            • Me again....
                                              Me, if marriage is determined to be a civil right then what would make you think the govt would exempt the Catholic Church from punishment for denying a gay couple the "right" to a marriage ceremony in said church? Divorce is something that the govt can grant without need of any action on behalf of the Catholic Church -- thus the govt has no power to compel that which the govt can already perform alone. If the govt can perform a "marriage" of a gay couple without need of any action by the Catholic Church then you're right the church runs into no problems but then that would really be a "civil union" and not a marriage wouldn't it?. In other words, you cant call marriage a civil right and then allow a group like a Christian church to deny exercise of that civil right. Discriminating based on color is not permitted by ANY person/entity whereas marriage can be? Thus, if gay marriage is truly a "civil right" then the next logical step is to punish Christian clergy for denying access to said civil right.
                                            • Intelligence
                                              Me, I am not insulting your intelligence. You seem educated and sincere. Rather, I always find it funny when some people think they are the only one that possess intelligence. I need to leave for a while so don't think I've departed in shame. I will check for your posts/replies later tonight. Have a good evening sir/madam.
                                            • Exempt
                                              The concept of religious organizations being exempt from certain government regulations is hardly a new or unique one. They don't even pay taxes. In fact, the Civil Rights Act itself has exemptions for "religious organizations" and then there's the whole "impeding the free exercise of religion" thing in the Constitution.
                                            • Have a good weekend, everyone
                                              I'm pretty much done with this conversation as it's already taken up too much of my day. Maybe I changed some minds, maybe I didn't. I just want people to read more and think more about the great responsibility they have when they make decisions that will effect the lives of other people and I refuse to apologize for that.

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                                            1. I am so impressed that the smoking ban FAILED in Kokomo! I might just move to your Awesome city!

                                            2. way to much breweries being built in indianapolis. its going to be saturated market, if not already. when is enough, enough??

                                            3. This house is a reminder of Hamilton County history. Its position near the interstate is significant to remember what Hamilton County was before the SUPERBROKERs, Navients, commercial parks, sprawling vinyl villages, and acres of concrete retail showed up. What's truly Wasteful is not reusing a structure that could still be useful. History isn't confined to parks and books.

                                            4. To compare Connor Prairie or the Zoo to a random old house is a big ridiculous. If it were any where near the level of significance there wouldn't be a major funding gap. Put a big billboard on I-69 funded by the tourism board for people to come visit this old house, and I doubt there would be any takers, since other than age there is no significance whatsoever. Clearly the tax payers of Fishers don't have a significant interest in this project, so PLEASE DON'T USE OUR VALUABLE MONEY. Government money is finite and needs to be utilized for the most efficient and productive purposes. This is far from that.

                                            5. I only tried it 2x and didn't think much of it both times. With the new apts plus a couple other of new developments on Guilford, I am surprised it didn't get more business. Plus you have a couple of subdivisions across the street from it. I hope Upland can keep it going. Good beer and food plus a neat environment and outdoor seating.