Prop 8: Are Those 14 Words To Blame?

The wording that The People have legally added to the state constitution in California, by the passing of Proposition 8 is quite simple -

"Only marriage between a man and a woman is valid or recognized in California"

That's it.

Just 14 words are being blamed on taking away the civil rights, of a minority group of individuals. Hogwash! All those 14 words have done, is express how the majority in a free and Democratic society feel about a major social and moral issue.

Those 14 words have been placed in the state constitution to confirm the teachings of most major religions in the world.

Most civilized societies throughout human history, reflect the same social and moral standards, stated in those 14 words.

Following the California Supreme Court hearings, where the validity of Prop 8 was argued - most legal analyst walked away feeling that the courts would ultimately uphold those 14 words - passed last November - by The People.

Proponents of same-sex marriage, continue to warn that if Prop 8 is left to stand - that gays and lesbians will be faced with archaic civil rights abuses.

These advocates continue to insist that the issue of same-sex marriage has everything to do with civil rights and equality. If we look at the possibility of Prop 8 being upheld by the California Supreme Court, then exactly WHAT "rights" could those who practice homosexuality be denied?

Here are the facts...

If we consider the original 10 Bill of Rights - if Prop 8 is upheld, homosexuals have absolutely nothing to worry about. They are still protected, just like you and I.

Okay, so what about BEYOND the "original" Bill of Rights? Are homosexuals free from slavery? Yup - Amendment 13. How about racial suffrage? Affirmative - Amendment 15. And gender suffrage? Uh huh - Amendment 19. Poll taxes? Amendment 24. Right to vote at age 18? No problem - Amendment 26!

A few other concerns that you might be having about the civil rights and equality of homosexuals - if Prop 8 is upheld:

• Yes, they are STILL free to live with whomever they wish and wherever they wish.
• Yes, they are STILL protected against discrimination in housing, employment and education.
• Yes, they can STILL drive!
• Yes, they can STILL enter into same-sex unions!
• Yes, they are STILL able to attend the church and religious service of their choice!
• Yes, they are STILL able to move about freely, and cross-state borders as they desire!

Now that you really KNOW the facts, it should be quite clear that the same-sex marriage debate - is NOT about either civil rights, or equality. It is about whether or not mainstream society ought to be FORCED to accept the morals and values of a minority - as normal.

The majority of society is still opposed to same-sex marriage. However, there is no intention to take away the basic human rights of anyone in this country, regardless of orientation. In the end - don't you think it is a bit underhanded to market and insist that the courts rule against Prop 8 on the basis of "civil rights", when no fundamental rights are even barely at risk?

Those "14 words" are simply not to blame for all the fuss being made about the civil rights and equality issues, of the gay and lesbian community.

Once again, those who desire to preserve traditional marriage, have no intention or desire to take away the "rights" of any other group of people. Personally, it is becoming exhausting to continually be asked to defend, from an equal rights perspective - my position on same-sex marriage. From now on, I am going to direct those who just don't get it - to this post.

It is my personal belief, as a Christian - that to do all that we can to preserve and defend the traditional family, as God has ordained it to be - is worth our very best efforts!

Kathryn Skaggs


  1. Thank you for your tireless efforts to maintain you position, with facts, in a loving way. I too believe that those 14 words can make a big difference in my life. I know that marriage between a man and a woman is ordained of God. The protection of that sacred eternal principle is one worth fighting for.

  2. Nice restatement of the facts.

    At issue before the court now is the question of the power of the people to make law. Truly, it is a test of whether we are are a democracy.

  3. Since when do we use our state constitutions to "confirm the teachings of most major religions in the world"?

    In the words of another blogger, "Why are civil unions a matter of prejudice, even if we are bestowing the same rights to same sex couples as heterosexual couples?

    It goes beyond problems that arise when gay or lesbian couples move between states which often have inconsistent policies regarding civil unions—it is a matter of segregation, not just semantics. Labeling gay marriages as civil unions is the same as forcing black people to drink from a different water fountain. It is saying simply, that gays and lesbians can have the same rights so long as they are kept separate from the rest of us—separate but equal.

    Some of my friends will no doubt argue that the circumstances of segregation differ because they believe that sexual orientation is a choice. Without getting into all of the evidence for or against a biological basis for sexual orientation, the fact is that in this country it shouldn’t matter. When mobs chased mormons out of Missouri and Illinois because of polygamy was that not discrimination based on belief or a choice? Discrimination because of belief or choice is still discrimination. Just because you believe someone wasn’t born that way doesn’t make it ok."

    The really disturbing part of this whole mess, comes from the oral arguments at the supreme court last week. Case in point: Chief Justice Ronald George counters with a hypothetical. The voters decide to do away with free speech from the First Amendment. Is that an amendment or a revision, and do the people have the right to do it?

    After much banter back and forth, Starr says they do.

    When the justices counter and ask Starr if his argument would be the same had Prop. 8 stripped gays and lesbians of all the rights they enjoy under California law, he assures the justices the proposition did not -- but says that his argument would indeed be the same.

  4. Yes, you are right - they are just 14 simple words with no real impact on the lives of gays or lesbians. Surely then, you would have no objection if your state decided to vote that Mormons should no longer be allowed to marry - but would be allowed civil unions. Naturally, you could still drive a car and have a job, etc - and its just words, afterall, so Im sure you and your family wouldn't mind....

    You are also right that society should not be forced to accept the morals and values of a minority - as is normal. Of course, we might want to repeal certain civil rights - such as the abolishment of slavery and women's right to vote which certainly did NOT become law by a popular vote....

    One question, however -- when you describe preserving 'traditional marriage' - how far back in history do we go to define 'traditional'? Traditional as in when polygamy was ok? Or when interracial marriage was illegal? Or further back when marriage involved treating women as property? It doesnt take an extensive tour through history to see that marriage as we know it today is not at all what was considered 'traditional' to prior generations - and has indeed been an ever evolving institution.

  5. Thank you for this post. It is very well written. And I agree with it completely.