The definition of marriage in Maryland is under attack because of the Legislature and Governor O’ Malley’s support for the Civil Marriage Protection Act, a bill that redefines marriage by allowing same-sex marriage in our state. Thanks to the thousands of signatures of Marylanders, the issue will be brought to a vote on November 6, 2012. Voters must vote AGAINST Question 6 in order to preserve marriage as the union between one man and one woman in Maryland.
If Question 6 is approved, same-sex marriage will be legal in Maryland.
Marriage Would Be Redefined For Everyone
Contrary to what some people think, same-sex ‘marriage’ would not exist in the law alongside traditional marriage; as if it were a different expression of the same marriage institution they have always known. Marriage will be redefined for everyone. Our historic understanding of marriage as the union of one man and one woman would be replaced by a new paradigm for marriage as the union of two people, regardless of gender.
Genderless Marriage the Only Legally Recognized Definition
This new, redefined version of marriage as a genderless institution would be the only legally recognized definition of marriage in Maryland. Such a radical change in the definition of marriage will produce a host of societal conflicts that government – exercising its enormous enforcement powers – will have to resolve.
Not a “Live and Let Live” Issue
Legal experts on both sides of the marriage debate agree that the issue has profound impacts on society. Scholars from some of the nation’s most respected law schools have written that the issue implicates a host of issues, ranging from religious liberty, to individual expression of faith, to education and the professions.
Racists and Bigots?
Those who do not agree with this new definition of marriage as a genderless institution existing for the benefit of adults will be treated under the law just like racists and bigots, and will be punished for their beliefs. This is already occurring elsewhere:
- Nonprofit groups are faced with abandoning their historic mission principles in order to maintain governmental contracts (for things like low-income housing, health clinics, etc.)
- Whenever schools educate children about marriage, which happens throughout the curriculum, they will have no choice but to teach this new genderless institution. In Massachusetts, kids as young as second grade were taught about gay marriage in class. The courts ruled that parents had no right to prior notice, or to opt their children out of such instruction.
- Wedding professionals have been fined for refusing to participate in a same-sex ceremony. Christian innkeepers in Vermont and Illinois are being sued over their refusal to make their facilities available for same-sex weddings despite offers to refer the couples to other providers and in spite of the deeply-held religious views of the inn-keepers. The outcome in Vermont? The innkeepers will no longer accept any wedding-related events. Surely a big blow to their income – and to their religious freedom.
- Doctors, lawyers, accountants and other licensed professionals risk their state licensure if they act on their belief that a same-sex couple cannot really be married. A counselor, for example, could not refuse ‘marriage therapy’ to a same-sex couple because she doesn’t believe in gay marriage. She’d put her licensure at risk.
Those people – a strong majority of Maryland voters – who believe that gays and lesbians should not be discriminated against as individuals simply because of their sexual orientation, but who also believe that marriage is between one man and one woman, would be the legal equivalent of bigots for acting on their heartfelt beliefs. Refusal to accommodate and recognize same-sex ‘marriages’ would be the equivalent of racial discrimination. Not only will the law penalize traditional marriage supporters, but the power of government will work in concert to promote this belief throughout the culture.
The Needs of Children Take Second Place to the Desires of Adults
Perhaps most importantly, redefining marriage shifts the focus of our marriage laws away from the interests of children and society as a whole, and onto the desires of the adults involved in a same-sex relationship resulting in the most profound long-term consequences. Such a paradigm shift says to children that mothers and fathers don’t matter (especially fathers) – any two ‘parents’ will do. It proclaims the false notion that a man can be a mother and a woman can be a father – that men and women are exactly the same in rearing children. And it undermines the marriage culture by making marriage a meaningless political gesture, rather than a child-affirming social construct.
The Deconstruction of Marriage
An example of how redefining marriage contributes to the deconstruction of marriage is its provision decreeing that ‘husbands’ can be women and ‘wives’ can be men. Any person with an ounce of common sense knows this is not true!
When marriage ceases to have its historic meaning and understanding, over time fewer and fewer people will marry. We will have an inevitable increase in children born out of wedlock, an increase in fatherlessness, a resulting increase in female and child poverty, and a higher incidence of all the documented social ills associated with children being raised in a home without their married parents.
Ultimately, we as a society all suffer when we fail to nourish a true, thriving marriage culture founded on the truth experienced by virtually every civilization in every nation since the dawn of time – marriage is the union of one man and one woman.