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What do you think?

September 23, 2007

Editor's note: Each week, The Herald-Mail invites readers to answer poll questions on its Web site, www.herald-mail.com. Readers also may submit comments about the poll question when voting. Each Sunday, a sampling of edited reader comments will run in The Herald-Mail.

Last week's poll question was: Do you agree with a Maryland Court of Appeals ruling Tuesday that upholds a state law defining marriage as a union between a man and a woman?

"I don't think that all gays and lesbians are members of only one of the two major political parties. I do believe that there are many other topics linked to marriage such as property rights, insurance of all kinds, pensions, social security benefits and other legalities. I have no disagreement with the state defining marriage in the customary and traditional sense as a union between a man and a woman. Before anyone protests, please check the history of the word 'marriage.'"

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"We need marriage laws to prevent multiple spouses to prevent young children from marrying, etc. If we allow men to marry men or women to marry women, we are one step closer to allowing other types of marriages."

"Why does anyone care what two consenting adults do? Lets be consistent. Government needs to stay out of our lives, and people have no right to tell other people how they should live their lives."

"This is a very sophisticated issue. From the religious standpoint, it could be viewed as immoral (although religious texts are somewhat vague as points of reference). Looked at from a scientific/biological stance, it would appear that homosexuality/lesbianism is natural and is within the genetic makeup of our species. ... I'm still wondering why the state is involved in any marriage. If the states are that concerned over same-sex marriage, shouldn't we also be concerned with the divorce rate, child support issues, frigid wives, "get & go" husbands and the plethora of other issues that constitute marriage as well?"

"I guess my question is if two gay guys want to get married, how does that hurt the rest of us? I mean, I do not understand it, but why should I and the rest of you have the right to tell them they can't get married? Why do we as a society want to be able to tell other people what they can and can't do?"

"I think that there are some heterosexual couples who treat marriage like a joke, and I know some homosexual couples who seem like they would treasure it as a sacred institution ... neither scenario is for me to judge. My opinion is that if homosexual couples cannot be 'married,' they should at least be allowed to have some sort of legal union ceremony ... and be held to the same standards as heterosexual married couples. No matter how you look at it, a true commitment between two people is a serious thing, and could be admired, if looked at from that standpoint."

"How is it that a loving, committed, married gay couple living next door to me affects MY marriage? I'm not threatened in any way by it. So the 'protecting the sanctity of marriage' argument is another bogus argument. If you want to protect marriage, make divorce ILLEGAL. It's interesting that Massachusetts, where around 9,000 gay marriages have been performed, has a lower divorce rate than, say, Alabama or almost any other 'Bible Belt' state."

"A marriage is the joining of two people who wish to spend their lives together. Who that person is has no effect on anyone. Whether or not a man marries a man or a woman marries a woman is not going to make or break my day."

"I think the state gets involved only because of the rights of gay couples becoming an issue regarding insurance, owning a home, estate tax, etc. Many companies will not allow a man/woman to enroll their 'mate' on their insurance plan. It is all about money and who gets or does not get the benefits."

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