Trusted local news leader for Prescott area communities since 1882
Sun, Oct. 20

POINT-COUNTERPOINT DEBATE: Should Arizona legalize gay marriage? - YES

Heck, maybe I'm too close to the dialogue. Someone close to me who was gay died a few years ago. He was a special guy named Buddy, who had good friends, a family who loved him, and a witty sense of humor. Through that experience, our family met Buddy's incredible friends who knew and loved him, in his life and as he died.

They shared their lives with Buddy and, in his death, shared their lives with our family in warmth, comfort and genuine affection.

Never - in any era or generation or ideology - could I ever look upon a single one of them as less than pure or undeserving of Heaven's grace on the basis of whether they prefer women or men romantically. And even if they were those things to an arbitrary mind, that would not make it anyone's right to legislate a prohibition on one of our society's most basic civil rights: to marry for love.

Not to mention that the moral high ground for the sanctity of heterosexual marriage is lost when we have, according to the Department of Health Services' most recent numbers, more than 11,000 registered opposite-sex divorces in Arizona through June in 2011 alone. That's an average of about 61 per day. When it comes to biblical values, opposite-sex couples have a worse batting average in vows before God than every gay couple combined, yet no one's calling for an immoral - or illegal - ban. And if you command the Bible to make up your mind, let me know how putting to death those who work on the Sabbath goes. Heterosexual sin gets selectively interpretive when convenient.

There are 150,000 legally registered gay married couples in six states right now. When New York became the latest state to legalize unions this past July, among the first weddings was a couple who had been together 49 years and a groom who was 97. None of these couples have impacted you in any way, shape or form. None have had any direct bearing on your personal lives or pleasures at all. And if they have, then you've got much bigger problems than two dudes in tuxes.

Gay marriage represents individual civil liberties and - with no law dictating terms on free citizens - smaller government. How about the fact that marriage has plenty of legal and financial benefits, including tax benefits. That means a married couple sends less tax money toward governmental waste. Personal freedom, smaller government, less taxes. The whole thing is a Tea Partier's dream! A gay Tea Party wedding!

That's something I've got to see.

More civil rights and personal liberties. I'm for that.


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