New York Preserves Marriage

The Heritage Foundation blogged about the New York State Senate rejection of a bill that would have redefined traditional marriage last Wednesday, calling into question the constant propaganda that gay marriage is the inevitable future of American “marriage.” The State Senate voted 38-24, with 8 Democrats joining the 30 Republicans.

Unfortunately, the New York House did indeed vote in favor of gay marriage 89-52. But the Senate voted to reject the bill

after a personal and emotional debate in which Martin Luther King and the history of civil rights were invoked on both sides. In the end, Senator Ruben Diaz of the Bronx rose to counter suggestions that traditional marriage enjoyed the support of only a handful of New Yorkers. “Not only the evangelicals, not only the Jews, not only the Muslims, not only the Catholics, but also the people oppose it,” Diaz stated as the roll call went forward.

Election Day 2009 undoubtedly played a role in the wide margin of defeat for the New York measure, as voters in Maine blocked a legislatively approved bill to redefine marriage, and pro-traditional marriage governors were elected in Virginia and New Jersey. Perhaps just as significantly and closer to home, this past Monday Tom Suozzi, described as a rising star in New York Democratic politics, officially lost his re-election bid to Republican Edward Mangano. This past summer Suozzi had drawn public attention for his embrace of marriage redefinition in the Empire State.

Suozzi cited high property taxes as the reason for his defeat, but clearly recent events have reinforced the evidence that the politics of the marriage issue are not following some Hegelian axis.

Gay marriage is not a civil rights issue. It cannot be compared to the interracial marriage debate of the mid-20th century. That debate focused on racial discrimination; this debate focuses on the nature of marriage itself between one man and one woman. The definition of marriage is pre-political and pre-religious. It is not up for reevaluation. See New York and Maine for details.

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5 thoughts on “New York Preserves Marriage

  1. Shea says:

    I really respected this group’s intentions until I read the blog. I thought this group maintained a secular view on abstinence, which I find refreshing when so often people only say virginity is worthwhile “because the Bible says so.”

    However, taking a stance on controversial issues such as gay marriage only limits your audience. For one, do you not want gay men and women to also seek abstinence until marriage, instead of encouraging premarital promiscuity? But even regardless of personal views of of homosexuality, blogging about issues such as this only limits your audience and your message. As a heterosexual female but an advocate of homosexual rights, this only pushes me further away from the abstinence community.

    I thought I had found a group that promoted the value of saving sex, not conservative values, but I’m rather disheartened.

    • trueloverevolution says:

      Thanks for writing! Despite ideological differences, I hope we can find common ground when we do agree, as TLR does certainly promote “the value of saving sex.”
      TLR certainly has no problem with civil unions or homosexuality; the issue is the redefinition of marriage. Marriage is not a “conservative” value. Marriage preceded religion and it preceded our society. Redefining it is not a question of rights. Marriage is a union between a man and a woman; that’s what it IS.
      This isn’t about my personal views on homosexuality; TLR is pro-traditional marriage. Please check out the “Read the Experts” section to find out why!

      • Esther says:

        “Marriage is a union between a man and a woman; that’s what it IS.”

        New York State’s legal definition of marriage is *not* currently a union between a man and a woman. It excludes consenting adult couples of the same sex in faithful love, but still includes unions forced on unwilling adolescents by parents who make higher priorities of lucrative bride prices, preserving older traditions, getting mouths to feed out of the house ASAP, etc. than on their children’s happiness and modesty.

        “…* If either applicant is under 14 years of age, a marriage license cannot be issued.
        * If either applicant is 14 or 15 years of age, such applicant(s) must present the written consent of both parents and a justice of the Supreme Court or a judge of the Family Court having jurisdiction over the town or city in which the application is made.
        * If either applicant is 16 or 17 years of age, such applicant(s) must present the written consent of both parents.
        * If both applicants are 18 years of age or older, no consents are required.

        One parent alone may consent to a minor’s marriage if:
        * The other parent has been missing for one year preceding the application;
        * The parents are divorced and the consenting parent was given sole custody of the child when the divorce decree was awarded;
        * The other parent has been judged incompetent; or the other parent is deceased.
        * Parents, guardians or other people consenting to the marriage of a minor must personally appear and acknowledge or execute their consent before the town or city clerk or some other authorized official. If the notarized affidavit is made before an official outside of the State of New York, it must be accompanied by a certificate of authentication when the consent is filed in New York State.”
        * If either applicant is 16 or 17 years of age, such applicant(s) must present the written consent of both parents….”

        Meanwhile, it’s legal for parents to spank children in their custody for disobedience. Put these two facts together and a 14-year-old may sign a marriage application in New York State because her or his parents won’t stop spanking her or him at home until she or he stops disobeying them by refusing an arranged marriage and arranged marital sex.

        As for running away from the custody of someone trying to arrange marital sex, those options are limited too:

        “…You must have a NYS driver license or a valid driver license from another US state or from Canada to drive in NYS. In most cases, you can drive in NYS if you have a valid driver license from another country. See “Drivers From Other Nations”. The minimum driving age in NYS is 16…”

        So much for an engaged 14-year-old in an automobile-dependent suburb in New York State being able to leave home and break the engagement.

        “…New York State has one of the most stringent child labor laws in the country, which limits the number of hours that minors under 18 may work when school is in session…” and the details are too much to quote here but shows pretty strict limits on full-time work for minors.

        So much for an engaged 14-year-old in New York State who can escape by foot, bicycle, or mass transit being able to afford to *stay* away from home and keep the engagement broken.

  2. James says:

    Hi there,

    Keep up with your work. However, I resonate with Shea’s comment. I agree with your point that there is nothing religious about “traditional marriage.” Traditional marriage is simply, well, traditional and can be defended on a variety of secular grounds. Nevertheless (and you probably know this), single-issue advocates are almost always more effective than multiple-issue advocates. To get your point across to a wider audience you may want to narrow your cause by sticking with chastity and not venture into other social or cultural issues. For example, there is a good number of radicals and liberals who espouse celibacy as means of self-empowerment (especially for women in a paternalistic society). These people are good allies and you wouldn’t want to alienate them by advocating “traditional family values” like “women should stay home and cook.” Likewise with the gay community.

    Finally, let’s revisit your point regarding the definition of marriage. “Redefining is not a question of rights.” Yes and no. The stuff you wrote about deals with legal definitions. Legal definitions define legal rights and liberties and nothing else. If the TLR is concerned about the moral or metaphysical (as opposed to legal) definition of marriage, it should be indifferent towards the legal status of same-sex marriage. Consider the following. The Christian Church does not recognize same sex unions. That alone would have satisfied any Christian who opposes gay marriage on religious grounds. One’s moral community does not condone gay marriage. That alone would have satisfied someone who opposes gay marriage on moral/philosophical grounds. By focusing on legal definition the TLR is actively undermining the legal rights of same sex couples. That alienates people. With the rise of political correctness, casual sex has become less and less politically correct by the day. Just compare today’s Harvard with Harvard circa 1975. If anything, it’s high time for “traditionalist” folks to reach out and build alliances with moderates, liberals and radicals.

  3. Esther says:

    “…For example, there is a good number of radicals and liberals who espouse celibacy as means of self-empowerment (especially for women in a paternalistic society). These people are good allies and you wouldn’t want to alienate them by advocating ‘traditional family values’ like ‘women should stay home and cook.'”

    Good point, especially since the “traditional family value” of “women should stay home and cook” is short for “women should stay home and cook for their husbands who are their sex partners.” Telling a woman that she should stay home and cook for her sex partner for a living is downright anti-abstinence (it’s very rare for a woman or girl to be able to keep a housewife position and keep her virginity at the same time).

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