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The Sanctity of Marriage

by Rev. Toni Dunbar

"I believe in the sanctity of marriage. I believe a marriage is between a man and a woman, and I think we ought to codify that one way or the other." (President George W. Bush, Jr., 7/30/03)

If the issue is the sanctity of marriage, i.e., the holiness of it, then codifying marriage in this way is an unacceptable intrusion of the Government into religious affairs. The Government must, then, secularize, and protect marriage between any two consenting adults. Furthermore, if the basis of the proposed legislation is a belief based upon religious teaching, as the female only/male only marriage doctrine is, to federally codify that doctrine is therefore to regulate the practice of religion and to establish a discriminatory, state-sanctioned religious practice. The intrusion, then, is unconstitutional and even more egregious.

Rev. Toni Dunbar

Part II

Marriage is a sacred institution. It's so sacred that any two heterosexuals can get married "just for the hell of it" and have their marriage cancelled a few days later like it never happened. Meanwhile, gays and lesbians who have been partners for many years don't have the basic rights and responsibilities that any married couple expects, no matter how briefly they are married -- even for 55 hours. It's just crazy, man.
- Bill Clearlake

The Last Fear

by Bill Clearlake

"I ain't afraid of nothin'!"

I've hear it said by tough guys from Pittsburgh to L.A. Tough guys clinging to outdated notions of masculinity, afraid of nothing except of being thought of as feminine in any way.

What this last fear does to men and what it drives us to do to ourselves, each other, our friends, families, and the world at large is an immense tragedy.

The fear of the feminine drives men to limit how we express ourselves. It limits our ability to feel and express our emotions. It prevents us from having close relationships with others. It often drives us into needlessly risky behavior to "prove our manhood." It can drive us to violence towards others in order to prove our toughness or to punish someone else for being "weak." The same fear can even lead to violence towards ourselves when we can't live up (or actually down) to the rigid standards we define as masculine.

If you were born a man then anything you do is an expression of your own individual manliness. You're already a man and there's nothing you need to prove. Maybe your way doesn't fit the masculine stereotype. So what.

Be yourself. What are you, chicken?

In love