Evangelicals, Catholics, Jews band together to fight gay marriage in NY

An unusual but potentially potent alliance has formed in recent weeks to try and keep New York from becoming the sixth state in the country to allow homosexual marriage.


Evangelicals, Jews and Catholics in the state are urgently mobilizing their communities to bring a stop to the legalization of gay marriage. Senators’ offices are being inundated with calls with the Senate expected to vote on the Marriage Equality Act Friday.

“There is a reason marriage is between a man and a woman. Mothers and fathers both contribute something unique to the rearing of children,” said the Rev. Jason McGuire, a Baptist minister and executive director of New Yorkers for Constitutional Freedom.

McGuire said he believes the grassroots campaign is gaining traction among the thousands of evangelical churches in New York though they had little time to mobilize.

“This bill came out of nowhere during Holy Week and it surprised a lot of people,” he said. “Because time was short, we opted for a political, rather than educational approach.”

He also pointed out the irony of the bill’s timing. “It’s interesting that the bill came forward right after Mother’s Day, and is near a vote as Father’s Day approaches. Society sets aside those days because society recognizes that mothers, fathers and marriage are important.” …

… Also placing pressure on senators to vote against the bill, Agudath Israel of New York, an organization representing Orthodox Jews, has distributed letters contending that the bill can potentially infringe on some citizens’ rights.

“If the bill becomes law, religious organizations and institutions that oppose same-sex marriage could be subject to legal attacks and severe penalties. Individuals (and the small businesses they own) that conscientiously object to same-gender marriage could also be labeled as unlawful ‘discriminators’ under state law and thus face lawsuits as well as a range of penalties,” the letter, which was drafted by several law professors, states.

Rabbi Avi Shafran, director of Public Affairs, maintains that elevating same-sex unions to the status of “marriage” would convey an unmistakable message that the state not only sanctions but endorses homosexual activity. At least one undecided senator reportedly expressed concern with the bill after receiving the Jewish organization’s letter.

Perhaps the most visible group trying to protect traditional marriage are the Catholics. Dennis Poust, communications director for the New York State Catholic Conference, said the Catholic Advocate Network, with 65,000 members, has been e-mailing and calling their senators and assemblymen for weeks and that their efforts have indeed stepped up this week.

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14 responses to “Evangelicals, Catholics, Jews band together to fight gay marriage in NY”

  1. Deacon:

    You are opening another can of worms, or to use another metaphor, throwing a live grenade in the hole.

  2. Interesting quote about how the bill’s progress has coincided with Mother’s Day and Father’s Day. (Of course, if it coincided with Memorial Day or Thanksgiving, somehow I think that card would have been played against the bill as well.)

    The speaker seems to have forgotten, though, that a fair number of folks who are gay or lesbian are also fathers or mothers. (Yes, in the year 2011, gay people have kids and love those kids and want those kids to grow up within a stable, committed family setting.) Not to mention that many moms and dads who are straight — some very good moms and dads — happen not to be married, or at least are not in their first marriage.

    Finally, many moms and dads have sons or daughters who are gay, and many of those parents wants their offspring to enjoy equal rights under the law as adults.

    No church or synagogue should have to provide a marriage sacrament/ceremony for a gay couple, but I would say the same thing if the religious body did not want to marry red-headed people: that’s their right. Rights under civil law (e.g., the right to marry in a courthouse ceremony or in one’s backyard or park) — that’s a different story altogether.

  3. Polygamy can’t be far behind. Who is to say that I can’t have three wives? So bigoted.

  4. The fact that some parents are homos**ual does not change that fact that each child has a biological mother and a biological father. Marriage exists (and has existed before there was any church or state) as the institution within which the child’s right to be raised by its parent and the parent’s right and duty to raise their children (barring exceptional circumstances) are exercised. The state has an interest in promoting this institution, which it did not create. The relationship of two people of the same s** is, in its very nature, a different reality from that of man and woman because it is biologically impossible for two men or two women to produce a child. So to treat the two as the same thing is to misrepresent the reality of each.

    This is not to deny that a same-s** couple can be very loving toward each other and toward the child of one of them. But the relationship is still biologically, factually different from that of man and woman.

    And no amount of abuse, whether in the form of cohabitation, no-fault divorce, or anything else, justifies a further denial of the natural reality of marriage.

    Beyond that, we have already seen business owners who conscientiously oppose same-s** “marriage” being forced to provide their services to same-s** couples. It is only a matter of time, wherever same-s** “marriage” is allowed, until the coercive power of the state is employed against religious bodies that deny the “civil right” of same-s**ex couples to “marry.”

    *Sorry about the asterisks, but if you string together the letters “ess-ee-eks” more than once or twice in a comment, the weird spam filter rejects the comment.

  5. If the NY bill passes people in NY better get ready to see their state become like here in Ma. where parents have lost their right to have a say on what their children are taught in public school, religious organizations have been driven from many charitable activities, people have lost their jobs for not wanting to participate in Gay marriage ceremonies,and small businesses have been coerced into being involved in activities they want no part in.
    And I bet the NY media hasn’t bothered to mention things like this happening if they follow Ma. lead. The propaganda line is–Oh! nothing else will change with Gay marriage.

  6. Is seems the so-called “Catholic” governor of NY is championing this cause with tremendous fervor. A few months ago his cohabitating life style was the hot topic because he marched up for Communion of his inauguration day. I wonder if he will still march up after his cooperating role in this moral travesty. How any Christian of any flavor who has ever read the words of Jesus on marriage can support this is beyond me.

  7. Nnaturgesetz (#4), your argument revolves chiefly around the procreative potential of the people (adults) who wish to marry. If we apply that argument strictly, then my wife and I are in an invalid marriage (despite our county marriage license and church wedding), for we were not able to procreate. We are parents only through the blessing of adoption. (And no complaints at all there. I can’t imagine not having our son as our son.)

    You also realize, I’m sure, that your argument also would preclude any couple from marrying if the woman has had a hysterectomy (in which case is procreation is not just unlikely but downright impossible). Using that same logic, the state will also need to prohibit couples in their eighties and nineties from marrying. Aside from couples in the Old Testament, I know of no couples in that demographic who are capable of bearing a child.

  8. One can hope that gay marriage may be the catalyst that will re-unite Christianity and reaffirm our common heritage with Judaism.

  9. Steve #3:
    Very good points made in your post.

    IMO, same gender marriage isn’t a religious issue, but a simple civil rights issue—not different than the civil rights that were finally gained for Blacks in this country in the 1960’s—a time I’m old enough to remember and lived in the south during that time, much of it in Birmingham, AL. Interacial marriage wasn’t legal for years either, and I’m sure much of that was driven by religion. This situation is no different. 2 consenting adults should be allowed to marry. As mentioned above and by others I expect, no church has ever been forced to marry 2 people, nor should they be. Thus no church will be made to marry same gender couples. Why then the objection to what is basically no one elses business except the 2 involved and the church that agrees to marry them. There are already states and churches that do that, fortunately.

  10. To compare the interracial marriage situation to the gay marriage situation is completely bogus. It is to compare apples and tobacco. Who says?? Ask the experts on the interracial aspect of the issue–Black Americans. In California they rose up and overwhelmingly voted for traditional marriage. They apparently totally rejected comparison claims.
    And if two consenting adults of any type should be allowed to marry, then who is to say 3 can’t be a marriage or 4 or 20. Heck, maybe we owe the Mormons a huge apology for not allowing Utah into the Union until Mormons stopped plural marriage in areas of Mormon majorities.
    And how dare laws say I can’t marry my mother or my sister if that is my choice.

  11. I disagree, Deacon Bresnahan, that my comparison is bogus,however you are of course entitled to you opinion, as I am mine. As to how Black-Americans voted in California? Fine. they are also, in this country, entitled to their opinion. However, if they had been told they couldn’t marry a person of a different race—would they have voted to keep races only marrying those of the same race? I expect not. Those that voted the traditional marriage vote probably didn’t represent every Black American in California—enough to vote down the prop.

    Didn’t you get a little carried away in that last paragraph? 2 consenting adults “of this type”? What “type” would that be? 2 consenting homosexual human beings? Of course. :o) Should have recognized that immediately. Anyhow—this article was about gay marriage—thus the comments were regarding 2 gay/lesbian human beings—who are of legal age and want to have the same rights as hetero folks to live, love and be happy in marriage. Not much to ask, IMO. As for the comments regarding incest—you can answer your own question.

  12. Perverting marriage means anything goes now… Polygamy and Pedophilia to name just two. Watch out parents!

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