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No one is forcing anything on anyone with HJR-3

By Scott Tibbs. Printed in the Bloomington Herald-Times, February 25, 2014

Here is a question worth answering: Given that the motivation for passing HJR-3 is primarily religious, why should people who do not believe as Christians do be subject to this law?

While we are not a "Christian nation," we do have a rich and well-documented history of roots in the Christian faith. Furthermore, all laws are based on morality of some sort. The constitutions of this state and nation do not prohibit laws from being passed on religious morality - they prohibit government from respecting an establishment of religion. Those are two very different things.

In addition, many of the same people who object to Christian sexual morality being the foundation for marriage policy have no objection to arguing that Scripture mandates government confiscating wealth to give to the poor. Not only is this argument hypocritical, but it would undo the welfare state if taken to its logical conclusion.

No one is forcing anything on anyone with HJR-3. This amendment will not ban sodomy (and there is no serious proposal for an anti-sodomy law on the table) and it will not ban homosexuals from living in a "committed relationship." What HJR-3 does is prevent state government from recognizing the union of two men or two women as a marriage, just as the state does not recognize a plethora of other unions (such as polygamous unions) as marriages.

What recognizing homosexual marriage would do is put state government in the position of placing a stamp of approval on sodomy. This truth is self-evident. Once the state recognizes the union of two men and two women as a "marriage," the state is declaring that sodomy is on the same moral footing as the procreative union of a man and a wife. Up until very recently, it has been universally understood in Christiandom that sodomy is a rebellion against the sexual order established by God.

The reason that a constitutional amendment is needed is to prevent a renegade judge from declaring that same-sex marriage is a "constitutional right" under the state constitution. That would be nearly impossible under state law if we pass the marriage-protection amendment.

It is true that this could well be decided federally, and I fully expect that eventually the Supreme Court will declare that it is "unconstitutional" to not recognize same-sex marriage. Nonetheless, it is absolutely absurd to suggest that the men who wrote the 14th Amendment intended to put "marriage equality" into the U.S. Constitution. Historical context matters.

So why push this amendment, if we are destined to lose this battle (absent a major spiritual revival) in the long run? The answer is simple: It is the right thing to do. It is the right thing because it is loving to refuse to approve of homosexual sin as a "marriage." It is the right thing to do because homosexual "marriage" represents a real threat to religious liberty and freedom of association. Finally, it is the right thing because it is an act of obedience to God's sexual order.