Archive | April 29, 2015

Traditional Marriage in D.C. has become a March*

Traditional Marriage in D.C. has become a March*

By  Warren Mass

An estimated 10,000 people marched in the third annual March for Marriage in Washington, D.C., on April 25. The event was organized by the National Organization for Marriage (NOM), which defines it mission as “work[ing] to defend marriage and the faith communities that sustain it at the local, state, and national levels.”

The Princeton, New Jersey-based NOM is led by Brian S. Brown, former executive director of the Family Institute of Connecticut, which has been a vocal opponent of assisted suicide, abortion, and same-sex “marriage” in Connecticut.

During a speakers’ program held for marchers in front of the U.S. Supreme Court building, Brown said:

“The people of this nation know what marriage is, and we do not want it redefined.”

The March for Marriage took place three days before the Supreme Court began hearing arguments on April 28 in four cases weighing whether states that bar same-sex marriage must recognize such unions that are legal in other states.

AP reported that the cases before the court come from Kentucky, Michigan, Ohio, and Tennessee, which comprise four of the 14 states that allow only traditional heterosexual marriage. Those states’ bans on same-sex marriage were upheld by the federal appeals court in Cincinnati in November. Only 11 states have legalized same-sex marriage through ballot measures or the legislature, however, the others coming about by means of court rulings.

The program held in conjunction with the march featured several religious leaders, highlighting the moral impetus for participants to defend marriage. One of the most high-ranking religious leaders to speak was Joseph Kurtz, who is archbishop of the Diocese of Louisville, Kentucky, and current president of the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops. Kurtz said that society’s view of regarding marriage only as “an adult friendship” loses sight of the “sacrificial love” and “one flesh union that Jesus Himself spoke of” that form the basis for marriage as an institution. The archbishop explained:

We have not cultivated the basis for sacrificial love but have, in a sense, fallen victims of a culture that tends to talk about adult choices and options.

I think we’re returning now very much to our roots, saying that at the basis of a good, healthy civilization and society is a family, and at the basis of that family is a sacrificial love

Jim Garlow, pastor of Skyline Church in La Mesa, California, warned that the Supreme Court should not “box with God.” “You mess with the definition of marriage and you burn, you’re toast, you cannot win,” said Garlow. “Your arms are too short to box with God. In 50 years they will laugh at you just like they’ll laugh at same-sex marriage.”

Other religious leaders speaking at the event included Ryan Dobson, son of Focus on the Family founder, Dr. James Dobson, and Reverend Ruben Diaz, an ordained minister who is pastor of Christian Community Neighborhood Church in the Bronx as well, as a New York state senator. And Reverend Bill Owens, founder and president of the Coalition of African American Pastors. Owens told those gathered:

I am a loving father, and I can tell you it’s a difference between a mother and a father. They love me, but boy they love their mother. How can a man be a mother? A man cannot be a mother. I cannot be a mother to my children, but I can be a good father to my children.

The marchers also heard from secular speakers, including Jennifer Marshall, vice president for the Institute for Family, Community and Opportunity at the Heritage Foundation. Marshall said, “Marriage existed before this government or any government,” and is “two halves of humanity coming together for the future of humanity.”

Liberty Counsel’s Matt Staver told the crowd, “When an earthly law collides with a higher law, we have no choice but to obey the higher law,” and warned that “a re-definition of marriage is a line we will not cross.”

Liberty Counsel is a non-profit pubic interest law firm and ministry that provides free legal assistance in defense of “Christian religious liberty, the sanctity of human life, and the traditional family.” It works in close association with Liberty University, and Staver is Liberty University’s law school dean.

NOM has been engaged in its defense of traditional marriage for several years. It led the initiative to pass California’s Proposition 8 in 2008. After being passed by 52 percent of California voters, the state constitution was amended to read that “only marriage between a man and a woman is valid or recognized in California.” The victory was short-lived, however, as Chief Judge Vaughn Walker of the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of California ruled in August 2010 that the amendment was unconstitutional under both the Due Process and Equal Protection Clauses of the 14th Amendment.

While people of faith and constitutional conservatives agree on issues such as the right to life and traditional marriage, not all follow the same approach to solving these moral dilemmas, which are often exacerbated by an overreaching federal court system.

Some conservatives think that the answer is to fight fire with fire and solve the problem at the federal level, by attempting to pass a human personhood or federal marriage amendment. However, aside from the difficulty in getting an amendment passed, even if successful, the amendment would grant more power to the federal government to enforce matters traditionally (and constitutionally) by the states.

When he was in Congress, former Representative Paul (R-Texas) repeatedly introduced a bill he called the “We the People Act,” which would have prohibited all federal courts from hearing cases on abortion, same-sex marriage, and establishment of religion matters, unless such a case were a challenge to the constitutionality of federal law. Paul told Congress:

“The best guarantor of true liberty is decentralized political institutions, while the greatest threat to liberty is concentrated power.

The bill was endorsed by Reverend Chuck Baldwin, the Constitution Party’s 2008 candidate for president.

Though the “We the People Act” would have settled many conflicts between the federal government and the states on morality issues, it never gained sufficient traction in Congress to be brought up for a vote.

Yet another strategy advocated by conservatives to defend marriage at the state level is nullification. In 2006, Alabama’s voters chose to amend their state’s constitution in order to define marriage as a union between one man and one woman. The measure passed by an overwhelming 80 percent-plus majority. However, U.S. District Judge Callie Granade recently ruled that the definition of marriage in Alabama had to conform to recent federal rulings recognizing same-sex marriage.

In response to this federal judicial overreach, Chief Justice of the Alabama Supreme Court Roy Moore sent a letter to Governor Robert Bentley stating: “As you know, nothing in the United States Constitution grants the federal government the authority to redefine the institution of marriage.” Moore also pointed out that the people of Alabama had only recently amended the state’s constitution stating that marriage is a “sacred covenant, solemnized between a man and a woman.”

In an article on the matter posted on February 3, John F. McManus, president of The John Birch Society and publisher of The New American, noted:

Moore’s letter even cited an 1825 opinion registered by Thomas Jefferson regarding nullification of unconstitutional federal mandates, a stand he will stand by. States, said Jefferson, could refuse to comply with unjust and unconstitutional federal dictates. Moore also pointed to the 10th Amendment and its clear affirmation that “powers not delegated to the United States by the Constitution” remain with the states and the people — and no such delegation of power had ever been made. Governor Bentley issued a statement supporting Judge Moore’s call for defiance.

The organizers and participants involved in the March for Marriage are undoubtedly moral people and courageous defenders of the family. It will be hoped by constitutionalists involved in the freedom fight that they will employ every constitutional weapon available to them to roll back federal power as they fight to save the family.


Related Topics:

Sex Education, the Key to Social Engineering*

Ontario Teacher Disciplined for Criticizing Child Sex Ed. – Paedophilia Program*

Canada: The Effect of Homosexual Parenting on One Child*

Kids in Same-sex Households at Greater Risk of Mental Health Problems*

Russia: Call to Boycott the Corrupting Influence of Valentine’s Day*

Bishop Badejo: U.S. won’t fight Boko Haram because of their Eugenics Agenda in Africa*

Gay Activist Admits our Goal is to Indoctrinate Children*

Days of Rage in Baltimore and Mexico*

Days of Rage in Baltimore and Mexico*

By Greg Grandin

Protesters mark the seven-month anniversary of the Ayotzinapa students’ disappearance in Chilpancingo, Mexico. (Reuters/Emiliano Torres)

Yesterday, as Baltimore restaged the intifada, protesters in Mexico, in Chilpancingo, the capital of the state of Guerrero, rammed a flaming truck into the glass-fronted congressional building, and set fire to at least six other vehicles. They had taken to the streets to mark the seven-month anniversary of the disappearances of the 43 students, who have come to represent the hundreds of thousands of dead as a result of US-Mexico’s drug, immigration, and trade policies (a number of the relatives of the disappeared are currently in New York, where they are appealing to the United Nations to end Washington’s so-called Merida Initiative, or Plan Mexico, which sends billions of dollars to Mexico to supposedly fight drugs but which the relatives of the 43 say goes to “suppress dissent”).

Elsewhere this week, in Oaxaca, protesters did damage to the building of the governing Partido Revolucionario Institucional. Videos of the Chilpancingo protest are here, here, here. In Mexico City, demonstrators erected an “anti-monument,” a large red 43 in the middle of the business center.

Obviously, the right way to think about the murder of Freddie Gray and the protests that followed is to think deeply about slavery and post-Abolition racism in the United States. Immediately after the trouble began yesterday, historians and critics on social media were broadcasting information about Baltimore’s history as a slave port, its long history of police brutality, its equally long history of resisting race terror. Apparently, Spiro Agnew’s law-and-order response to a protest that turned violent in 1968 bought him his spot on Nixon’s ticket.

One can also, without diluting the power of that deep history, think about the repression and reaction laterally, as an effect of the same transnational policing and trade policies responsible for the disappearance of the 43 student-activists in Mexico. Since the August murder of Michael Brown and the September abduction of the 43 Mexican students, #BlackLivesMatter and #TodosSomosAyotzinapa are just two of the hashtags that have captured distinct heterodox protest movements that are converging.

I was at an event the other night at CUNY, a “Citizen’s Tribunal,” part of a “caravan” that is bringing the parents and advocates of the 43 disappeared to over 40 US cities (Roberto Lovato writes about it here in The Nation). At the CUNY event, a lawyer for the parents said that the two principal obstacles to “neo-liberalism”—and hence the two principal targets of neo-liberalism’s enforcers—were the ejidos, that is, peasant communities who still hold and work their land in common, and the rural teacher-training institutes (like the one where the 43 were enrolled), which for decades has taken the lead in protesting the dispossession generated by “free trade.” In the wake of Baltimore, that observation put me to think that Mexican peasant communities and African-American urban communities are broadly structurally analogous in their relation to “free trade” capitalism.

On both sides of the border, the absence of any sane, humane, industrial or rural policy has created concentrations of dispensable peoples. On both sides of the border, children of these dispensable people are most vulnerable.

“In 2007, Baltimore City African American infants were almost nine times more likely to die before age 1 than White infants residing in Baltimore City.”

In Mexico, the southern agrarian states, including Guerrero, that have suffered under NAFTA have similarly stunningly high rates of infant mortality. On both sides of the border, these people, the victims of failed government policy, are then blamed for the failure of government policy, their culture, their attitude, their “values,” and their music (rap, hip-hop, and the narcocorrido). On both sides of the border, rolling protests, days of rage and frustration like those seen in Baltimore and Chilpancingo have difficulty coalescing into a national movement, building a coalition with elites or national-level political parties due to the fragmentation of politics, itself an effect of government economic policy.

On both sides of the border, US federal money funds the over-policing of the crisis.

“The weapons that are given to Mexico [by Washington] are used to kill us, not help us,” said Blanca Luz Nava Velez, whose 19-year-old son, Jorge, is among the missing.

And on both side of the border, the crisis is generated by federal policies (enacted by both Washington and Mexico City) that are designed to keep pay low and jobs precarious: What demands can a segregated labor force divided by a garrisoned border make on capital that can go anywhere it wants, anytime it wants?

Advocates of the North American Free Trade Agreement did say that economic liberalization would bring about a convergence. They were right. Just wait to see what the TPP brings.


Related Topics:

The Pressure Cooker under Baltimore*

Soros Turned Ferguson from a Local Protest to a National Flashpoint*

Detroit: Your World under TPP*

Arizona: AZ SB1070 Is Not a Law

Mexico Protest Blacked Out By Media