rjpieces
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Gay Rights

Mon Sep 20, 2004 12:19 pm

I was wondering about gay rights in other countries. Do gay couples in other countries have the same rights as married couples? Is it a controversial issue in other countries as it is in the US?

What is the future of the gay marriage/union issue in the US now? Assuming there is no federal amendment to ban gay marriage, are any other states expected to legalize gay marriage/civil unions? Are gay couples in Mass. being given FULL equal rights, even when it comes to issues with the Federal Government like taxes? What other states have been progressive with regards to gay rights? Any chance that Congress will ever get rid of the Defense of Marriage Act of 1996?

It seems crazy that in NYC and San Francisco, there hasn't been more of a forceful movement for equal rights. It really boggles my mind that in 2004 this is still an issue.
"Millions long for immortality who do not know what to do with themselves on a rainy Sunday afternoon"
 
Falcon84
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RE: Gay Rights

Mon Sep 20, 2004 12:22 pm

Eventually, gay rights, like woman's rights and rights for minorities will be accepted. I think Civil Unions are the way to go, but, eventually, this country will allow gay marriages.

And it's only an issue because two extremes-the gay lobby and the far right of the GOP have, together, made it an issue.
Work Right, Fly Hard
 
vaporlock
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RE: Gay Rights

Mon Sep 20, 2004 12:26 pm

Falcon84, well said!!!!

Phyllis  Wink/being sarcastic
 
ArgInMIA
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RE: Gay Rights

Mon Sep 20, 2004 1:35 pm

Lets see how long till someone starts saying that we want special priveleges.. when are they going to undestand that we just want to have the same rights.. put it this way.. you live with your girfriend for 5 years.. she has no family.. she gets into a car accident.. and she gets hospitalized (lets say a coma .. so she cannot talk) you try to visit her.. but since you are not a family member.. the hospital will not allow you to see her... if you where married.. that would solve the problem.. now things like these happen to gay couples.. you want to visit your partner in a hospital.. and since you aren't family or spouse.. you CAN'T.. what's so "special privilege" about just asking for those rights?

back to the topic.. here in Buenos aires we have full "Civil Union" laws.. still not on the federal law.. but it will shortly be there also.. giving the "civil Union" the same rights as an heterosexual marriage..
Alto.. Mucho mas alto.. hasta la cumbre
 
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EA CO AS
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RE: Gay Rights

Mon Sep 20, 2004 1:54 pm

I'm confused; can someone please tell me which parts of the Bill of Rights don't apply to gay individuals?

My point is that if we are truly "all created equal," then why do certain subsets of the populace need a separate group of rights?
"In this present crisis, government is not the solution to our problem - government IS the problem." - Ronald Reagan

Comments made here are my own and are not intended to represent the official position of Alaska Air Group
 
ArgInMIA
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RE: Gay Rights

Mon Sep 20, 2004 2:02 pm

Nobady said SEPARATE group or rights.. EA CO AS.. we just want the same rights a regular heterosexual cuple can have.. like for example being able to visit your partner in the hospital when he is sick..
Alto.. Mucho mas alto.. hasta la cumbre
 
dmeeky243
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RE: Gay Rights

Mon Sep 20, 2004 2:14 pm

About 10 years ago, something my dad said stuck with me. "I believe in equal rights for everyone, special rights for no one." I live by that. Whether its from my (flagrantly) homosexual lead server Danny, to my mildly handicapped DMO (dishwaser) Juanito. They're each treated the same. I've found that everyone on my crew, respects this approach, and is impressed by it. Just my two cents. Hey, whatever floats your boat.
"I have a favorite dish, which tends to change daily depending on my mood, or whether I have a hangover, or whether it's
 
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EA CO AS
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RE: Gay Rights

Mon Sep 20, 2004 2:18 pm

we just want the same rights a regular heterosexual cuple can have.. like for example being able to visit your partner in the hospital when he is sick

That's not a "right" that can be legislated though. That's a matter of hospital policy.

Again, my point is that the clamor for "(insert group here) rights" are misguided, since there is no part of the Bill of Rights that excludes certain groups.

"In this present crisis, government is not the solution to our problem - government IS the problem." - Ronald Reagan

Comments made here are my own and are not intended to represent the official position of Alaska Air Group
 
DC10GUY
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RE: Gay Rights

Mon Sep 20, 2004 2:33 pm

Being gay is not normal. Its ok to be gay but its not "normal" A man and a woman living together for too long becomes "common law" marriage. Gay people can live together forever if they want to but marriage is for men & women.
Next time try the old "dirty Sanchez" She'll love it !!!
 
jasepl
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RE: Gay Rights

Mon Sep 20, 2004 2:38 pm

Being gay is not normal. Its ok to be gay but its not "normal"

Oh please! Normal is a setting on a washing machine.
 
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EA CO AS
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RE: Gay Rights

Mon Sep 20, 2004 2:41 pm

A man and a woman living together for too long becomes "common law" marriage.

Again, that's not something the Bill of Rights addresses - either in favor of or opposing. As a previous poster said, the Bill of Rights apply to everyone, and there isn't a need for a special set of rights for others.

Jesus is a Liberal Jew !!!

Dc10guy, I have a question about your signature - if Jesus is liberal, do you think he'd embrace a liberal cause, like a woman's right to choose?  Big grin

(And for the record, I'm pro-choice - just wanted to make you think a bit about your signature)
"In this present crisis, government is not the solution to our problem - government IS the problem." - Ronald Reagan

Comments made here are my own and are not intended to represent the official position of Alaska Air Group
 
seb146
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RE: Gay Rights

Mon Sep 20, 2004 3:15 pm

But we have come a long way in the fight for gay rights. I was once fired not 10 years ago for being gay. Now, we are on the verge of declaring same sex unions.

But, could someone explain to me (keeping separation of church and state in mind) how same sex unions are bad?

GO CANUCKS!!
Patriotic and Proud Liberal
 
jasepl
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RE: Gay Rights

Mon Sep 20, 2004 3:24 pm

But we have come a long way in the fight for gay rights. I was once fired not 10 years ago for being gay. Now, we are on the verge of declaring same sex unions.

Seb, I'm not poking fun or anything, but this reminds me of something I read. About how true equality has always existed and still does. Both gays and straights can be fired for being gay.
 
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RobK
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RE: Gay Rights

Mon Sep 20, 2004 4:14 pm

Like someone said on another thread :

GOD MAKE ADAM AND EVE, NOT ADAM AND STEVE

:D Big grin Big grin Big grin Big grin

RK
 
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ClassicLover
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RE: Gay Rights

Mon Sep 20, 2004 4:20 pm

Getting back to the topic before this degenerates into a typical Airliners.Net free for all...

In Australia, you can't be married if you're a gay person.

However, what the majority of gay people want is equal rights. In what way is it not equal? If one person in a gay relationship dies, and they have been living together for 40 years, the surviving member has no rights at all.

They don't get the Superannuation money (pension scheme). If the house is in the dead partners name, they have no right to the house.

You are not considered a "partner" legally.

My personal opinion is that people can take marriage and keep it how it is, or do whatever with it. I'd be quite happy with De Facto status being recognised on a future relationship that I have, so that I have the same rights that straight couples who aren't married but who live together for years have.

Trent.


[Edited 2004-09-20 09:21:41]
I do quite enjoy a spot of flying - more so when it's not in Economy!
 
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solnabo
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RE: Gay Rights

Mon Sep 20, 2004 4:21 pm

Strange that every homophobic referres to the bible when it comes to gay issues  Insane

Micke/SE
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ussherd
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RE: Gay Rights

Mon Sep 20, 2004 7:27 pm

Same-sex couples may marry in the Netherlands, Belgium & Denmark.

Same-sex couples may enter into civil partnerships in Croatia, Denmark, Finland, France, Germany, Hungary, Iceland, Norway, Portugal, Sweden, Switzerland and Spain.

UK: Civil union legislation is going through parliament. Has been met with complete indifference by the general public.

Ireland: The Law Reform Commission of Ireland has recommended granting both heterosexual and homosexual cohabiting couples a number of legal rights and this proposal is currently being discussed.

Some civil unions offer virtually the same rights as marriage; others are a much more diluted version of marriage. The general view is that civil unions are an intermediate step towards the granting of full marriage rights to homosexuals.

In September 2003, in it’s annual report on human rights issues in the European Union, the European Parliament recommended that the 15 member states grant homosexuals the right to marry and adopt.
Cada loco con su tema...
 
Catatonic
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RE: Gay Rights

Mon Sep 20, 2004 7:50 pm

Like someone said on another thread :

GOD MAKE ADAM AND EVE, NOT ADAM AND STEVE

:D

RK


Funny, I bet you dont even believe in Adam and Eve yet you use it as a basis for a moral argument!
Equally Cursed and Blessed.
 
jasepl
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RE: Gay Rights

Mon Sep 20, 2004 8:03 pm

Good to see that the Commission is getting it right in some instances, at least!
 
cragley
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RE: Gay Rights

Mon Sep 20, 2004 8:11 pm



Why call it a right? a 'special right'? a privilege?

Its what I expect! If my partner was in hospital, why shouldnt I be able to visit?

It's a total no brainer.

They aren;t special rights, privileges or even concessions. Its common sense and its not about giving a group something. But its more about witholding human rights from a person/persons because of what they are.

Its nothing 'special' by any means. If you believe the right to not being harrassed, discriminated against or hated is 'special', then the question should be 'why do you believe YOU should have special rights?

Sadly this topis is still an issue.

Til the next retarded 'gays have too many rights' thread.


Cragley  Smile/happy/getting dizzy
 
Arniepie
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RE: Gay Rights

Mon Sep 20, 2004 8:22 pm

As far as I know you can get married over here (Belgium) and you are also eligible as adoption couples.
Until now not to many gays get married but this is mainly because of taxes.
In Belgium it is cheaper not to be married but have a so called "living-together"
contract (also the reason why me ,my brother and sister are not married with our partners).
conclusion: gay or straight= no difference.
[edit post]
 
dtwclipper
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RE: Gay Rights

Mon Sep 20, 2004 8:35 pm

Let's put in terms that a-netters will understand:

Two men have a long term relationship, have a home together, a mortgage, one checking account, wills, power of attorney (for catastrophic illness), tax bills, two cars and a dog.

When one of them is involved in an horrific airliner crash (god forbid), no settlements from the airline nor assistance would be given to the other partner.

The surviving partner is not entitled to any cash settlements, nor participation in litigation.

The surviving partner would not be entitled to receive any information from the airline, nor transportation to the event site.

The surviving partner would not receive Social Security benefits, and legal action my be taken by the deceased family in regards to airline settlements rather than the partner who will loose half of his household income, which could have devastating long term financial effects.

These are not special rights, but equal rights that any co-habitating "hetro" married or common law (US) couple have.



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Falcon84
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RE: Gay Rights

Mon Sep 20, 2004 9:01 pm

I'm confused; can someone please tell me which parts of the Bill of Rights don't apply to gay individuals?

If that's true, EA CO AS, why are certain groups and individuals working so hard to change the Constitution to, for the first time, to specifically DENY a group something?

That to me implies that these people don't want gays to have equal rights, is that not correct?

The right is tryng to put something into the Constitution something that isn't there, and shouldn't be there-a definition of marriage. That should have nothing to do with our Constitution.

I am not for churches being foreced to accept gay marriages. I have no problem with individual states accepting Civil Unions. But I think amending the Constitution on this issue-and on issues such as flag burning, is just plain stupid.
Work Right, Fly Hard
 
TWFirst
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RE: Gay Rights

Mon Sep 20, 2004 10:49 pm

>>That's not a "right" that can be legislated though. That's a matter of hospital policy.<<


EA CO AS...

Hospitals are allowed to make such policies because 1) Gay people aren't allowed to enter into a marriage contract as straight people can (can be changed through legislation) and 2) It still is allowable to discriminate against people simply because of their sexual orientation (also can be changed through legislation).

Can you imagine if a hospital had a policy that didn't allow mixed race couples to visit each other??


On another note, I believe Spain is currently considering allowing gay people to marry.

An unexamined life isn't worth living.
 
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EA CO AS
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RE: Gay Rights

Mon Sep 20, 2004 11:28 pm

I'm confused; can someone please tell me which parts of the Bill of Rights don't apply to gay individuals?

If that's true, EA CO AS, why are certain groups and individuals working so hard to change the Constitution to, for the first time, to specifically DENY a group something?


Because those groups are misguided on this issue. Additional laws aren't required, especially an amendment banning gay marriage.

"In this present crisis, government is not the solution to our problem - government IS the problem." - Ronald Reagan

Comments made here are my own and are not intended to represent the official position of Alaska Air Group
 
Falcon84
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RE: Gay Rights

Mon Sep 20, 2004 11:29 pm

Amazing that you can find some common ground, EA CO AS, when starting from different perspectives on the issue, is it not?  Smile
Work Right, Fly Hard
 
jaysit
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RE: Gay Rights

Mon Sep 20, 2004 11:40 pm

"That's not a "right" that can be legislated though. That's a matter of hospital policy."

That isn't true.

Although the Bill of Rights on paper applies equally to all of us, public and private institutions need not respect rights that are not articulated - which is why you need legislation to explicitly prevent the kind of discrimination that would, for example, affect a gay man from visiting his sick partner in a hospital. I seriously doubt if blacks could have been served at lunch counters back in the 60s just by waiving the Bill of Rights at the server. And I doubt if a gay man could walk into a hospital and demand that he be given visitation rights by submitting a photocopy of the same.

As far as this being a separate right goes, it is not. You de facto enjoy it; others do not. Legislation could simply state that "no institution shall bar a domestic partner/spouse/caregiver from visitation." End of story. It would cover everyone equally. Unfortunately, heinous stuff like the FMA would deny even that.
Atheism is Myth Understood.
 
Catatonic
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RE: Gay Rights

Mon Sep 20, 2004 11:41 pm

I'm confused; can someone please tell me which parts of the Bill of Rights don't apply to gay individuals?

If that's true, EA CO AS, why are certain groups and individuals working so hard to change the Constitution to, for the first time, to specifically DENY a group something?

That to me implies that these people don't want gays to have equal rights, is that not correct?

The right is tryng to put something into the Constitution something that isn't there, and shouldn't be there-a definition of marriage. That should have nothing to do with our Constitution.

I am not for churches being foreced to accept gay marriages. I have no problem with individual states accepting Civil Unions. But I think amending the Constitution on this issue-and on issues such as flag burning, is just plain stupid.


Its scandalous that this happens in this day and age, are we in society not happy unless we are oppressing something or someone? Just seems that we don't learn anything from the way black people, Jews and women were treated, its happening all over again!

Anyone who believes in this kind of oppression keeps Hitler alive in your own hearts!!
Equally Cursed and Blessed.
 
ZS-SAZ
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RE: Gay Rights

Tue Sep 21, 2004 12:12 am

South Africa is quite well developed in terms of gay rights. Our Constitution is the only constitution in the world to ban discrimination based on sexual orientation. Infact, pretty much anyone and everyone is protected under our Bill of Rights.

Furthermore, we're allowed to jointly adopt children, and very soon we'll be given at least the right to enter into a civil union. This saturday's pride much in Johannesburg is themed on gay marriage, in an effort to give awareness to the progress we're making.

Unfortunately, I don't think our society is 'liberal' enough to extend the definition of marriage to same-sex couples, but personally I don't see what the difference is between a marriage and a civil union - they're both legal binding documents with the same rights and duties imposed on both. One is called marriage; the other, a civil union.

Just my R0.02...
 
PDPsol
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RE: Gay Rights

Tue Sep 21, 2004 12:31 am

Hello TWFirst,

On another note, I believe Spain is currently considering allowing gay people to marry.

A bit of an update here; the new Socialist government is not just considering legislation for same-sex marriage in Spain, it has already announced plans to have the law ratified by the Legislature in early 2005. The law would grant full marriage rights to gay and lesbian couples; Spain would be the largest country in the world (with 42.2 million people) to have ratified same-sex marriage.

In addition, the Zapatero government has planned legislation that would exact tough sentences for domestic violence and greatly facilitate women's access to family planning and abortion.

Not surprinsingly, the Catholic Church has publicly complained about the new government.
 
VSlover
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RE: Gay Rights

Tue Sep 21, 2004 12:54 am

GOD MAKE ADAM AND EVE, NOT ADAM AND STEVE


funny how god made neither. science did.
 
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EA CO AS
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RE: Gay Rights

Tue Sep 21, 2004 1:02 am

Amazing that you can find some common ground, EA CO AS, when starting from different perspectives on the issue, is it not?

Why is it amazing? I haven't changed my position - no changes or additions to the Bill of Rights are required to protect any subsets of the populace.
"In this present crisis, government is not the solution to our problem - government IS the problem." - Ronald Reagan

Comments made here are my own and are not intended to represent the official position of Alaska Air Group
 
rjpieces
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RE: Gay Rights

Tue Sep 21, 2004 1:04 am

Thanks for all the responses, especially ussherd's reply 16. What about the rest of my post:What is the future of the gay marriage/union issue in the US now? Assuming there is no federal amendment to ban gay marriage, are any other states expected to legalize gay marriage/civil unions? Are gay couples in Mass. being given FULL equal rights, even when it comes to issues with the Federal Government like taxes? What other states have been progressive with regards to gay rights? Any chance that Congress will ever get rid of the Defense of Marriage Act of 1996?

It seems crazy that in NYC and San Francisco, there hasn't been more of a forceful movement for equal rights. It really boggles my mind that in 2004 this is still an issue.


Thank you.
"Millions long for immortality who do not know what to do with themselves on a rainy Sunday afternoon"
 
Falcon84
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RE: Gay Rights

Tue Sep 21, 2004 1:09 am

EA CO AS, you missed the point-neither one of us changes our basic position on gay rights, yet we agree, ultimately, that the steps being proposed are over the top. For two who don't agree too often, that's not bad.

Work Right, Fly Hard
 
Klaus
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VSLover

Tue Sep 21, 2004 1:38 am

VSLover: funny how god made neither. science did.

I hope notBig grin
But science certainly does a good job researching how nature did it...  Wink/being sarcastic
 
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EA CO AS
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RE: Gay Rights

Tue Sep 21, 2004 2:48 am

EA CO AS, you missed the point-neither one of us changes our basic position on gay rights, yet we agree, ultimately, that the steps being proposed are over the top. For two who don't agree too often, that's not bad.


Ah, ok. I misunderstood where you were going on that.  Big grin

And for what it's worth, I'm finding we agree on the big things more often than not.
"In this present crisis, government is not the solution to our problem - government IS the problem." - Ronald Reagan

Comments made here are my own and are not intended to represent the official position of Alaska Air Group
 
N6376M
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RE: Gay Rights

Tue Sep 21, 2004 2:54 am

Here's a link describing where the gay marriage issue goes from here.

http://www.cnn.com/2004/ALLPOLITICS/09/19/louisiana.same.sex.marriage.ap/index.html

Voters in Louisiana approved a ban last week. The article mentions that there are 11 more states voting on the issue in November.

Though I agree that this is better handled by the state than at the federal government level, I disagree with the outcome. Why should one class of people be denied the constitutional protections afforded others just because of their sex. Fundamentally, it's an equal protection issue.

Nobody's ever been able to raise an argument supporting a ban on gay marriage to me that doesn't involve God/religion somewhere in the argument. If anyone's got one, let's here it.
 
jasepl
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RE: Gay Rights

Tue Sep 21, 2004 3:08 am

Over here, unfortunately, we still have the silly Victorian law on the books that says that sex "against the order of nature" is illegal. Whilst I'm still waiting for someone to conclude that homosexuality is indeed natural because it has been observed as occuring in human beings, there's hope from the givernment's claim that only 55 people have been prosecuted under this law in the last 50 years, almost all of them for child molestation. I would tend to doubt the figure given by the government, but it's not too bad.

Overall though, everyone is pretty much left alone by the state and you're free to do whatever you want. Still, there's a long, long way to go before we reach the stage that many other countries have. I can't even give a cousin or a grandparent an add-on credit card, let alone ensure that my partner has any legal rights over anything to do with me!

That said, anyone notice how laws that were "imposed" on a country by their colonisers and accepted so well by the native population, they can't get rid of them for long after the colonisers have done? For example, homosexuality was never illegal in India and slavery not legal in North America before the English came. The English then constituted laws that made homosexuality illegal in India and slavery legal in America. Finally, long after the English repealed both laws from their books, the now independent colonies still continued to retain - and defend - these laws.
 
jaysit
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RE: Gay Rights

Tue Sep 21, 2004 3:21 am

"That said, anyone notice how laws that were "imposed" on a country by their colonisers and accepted so well by the native population, they can't get rid of them for long after the colonisers have done?"

Because India has become less Kama Sutra, and more BPO. In fact I wouldn't be surprised if one day the GOI puts a big burkha on the Khajuraho temples in the name of Victorian decency.
Atheism is Myth Understood.
 
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solnabo
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RE: Gay Rights

Tue Sep 21, 2004 3:22 am

Gay marriage in the church are on the agenda right now in Sweden....

I think it will pass, most seems to be pro-marriage in gvt.

Micke/SE  Big thumbs up
Airbus SAS - Love them both
 
jasepl
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RE: Gay Rights

Tue Sep 21, 2004 3:35 am

Because India has become less Kama Sutra, and more BPO. In fact I wouldn't be surprised if one day the GOI puts a big burkha on the Khajuraho temples in the name of Victorian decency.

Ugh! I find even the word BPO offensive! And India can't have become any less Kama Sutra - people have got to be shagging like bunnies. Look at our population - it's out of control!
 
ConcordeBoy
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RE: Gay Rights

Tue Sep 21, 2004 3:42 am

Same-sex couples may marry in the Netherlands, Belgium & Denmark.

add Canada to that
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jasepl
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RE: Gay Rights

Tue Sep 21, 2004 3:47 am

Of course, it goes without saying, that we don’t have any homosexuals, thank God, in India. They're a Western abomination and simply don't exist here, except in the minds of those who wish to import homosexuality from the West and corrupt the oh so moral characher of our fine youth.
 
LH423
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RE: Gay Rights

Tue Sep 21, 2004 4:36 am

ConcordeBoy: Right now the situation in Canada is similar to that in the US. Marriage is conducted on a provincial level rather than federal. Right now marriage is legal in British Columbia, Ontario, and Quebec. There is a movement in a Martin government to make gay marriage legal on the federal level so every province would be forced to adopt gay marriage, but some, namely Alberta, are fighting that.

LH423
« On ne voit bien qu'avec le cœur. L'essentiel est invisible pour les yeux » Antoine de Saint-Exupéry
 
LY4XELD
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RE: Gay Rights

Tue Sep 21, 2004 6:06 am

LH423,

You can now add Manitoba to the list of provinces allowing gay marriages. Also, Yukon has granted same-sex marriages as well, although not territory wide.
That's why we're here.
 
debonair
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RE: Gay Rights

Tue Sep 21, 2004 6:27 am


Same-sex couples may marry in the Netherlands, Belgium & Denmark

Also SPAIN!!!

http://www.rainbownetwork.com/News/detail.asp?iData=21067&iCat=29&iChannel=2&nChannel=News

I think it is at the right time, to talk about gay rights! I was really shocked, when I was coming across this:

Gay Double Murder Shocks India
by 365Gay.com Newscenter Staff


Posted: August 16, 2004 11:01 am ET

(New Delhi) The slayings of two young men whose bodies were found in a home in an affluent New Delhi neighborhood has both shocked and titillated India where most gays are underground and where crimes against gays often go unreported.

The bodies of Pushkin Chandra, a USAID worker and the son of a prominent former government employee, and a man identified only as Vishal were found Saturday in the first floor of the sprawling mansion owned by Chandra's parents.

Both men had been stabbed to death. Police say that the area where the men were found had been ransacked and Polaroid photos of nude men, many with names on the back of them, were found strewn around the room.

Police say it appears that the victims knew their killers, adding revenge could be the motive.

"There is a possibility that the victims were blackmailing someone. But nothing definite can be said at this stage," a police officer said.

The room in which the bodies were found was locked from the outside. There were no signs of a forced entry into the room investigators said.

Investigations have revealed that both men had returned from a party around midnight Saturday. A security camera showed the two leaving the home for the party, but not returning. Chandra's car is also missing.

Monday, police began rounding up male prostitutes in New Delhi for questioning. Police say that material found at the scene of the killings indicated Chandra often hired hustlers.

Police also want to question a Danish national identified as Uffe Gartner, who knew Chandra and reportedly flew to France on the day the bodies were discovered.

The party that the two victims had attended was reportedly a farewell for Gartner.

The murders have put a media spotlight on India's gay community. As gays fight to have laws against sodomy, dating back to British colonial rule, repealed, many people in the community say lurid media reports are only harming that effort.
 
CaptOveur
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RE: Gay Rights

Tue Sep 21, 2004 7:18 am

"A man and a woman living together for too long becomes "common law" marriage."

As always, DC10guy has oversimplified things. Common law varies by state, but since Texas is as backwards as anyplace it is probably the easiest place to be common law married. My girlfriend and I have lived together for around a year, yet we are NOT common law married because we do not present ourselves as such. If we were to share a bank account or if she took on my name, then we WOULD be common law married. It is a very thin but clear line you have to cross to be married in this way, pretty much if you ever do anything that only a couple that is married would do, then you are married. Otherwise god only knows how many property disputes might crop up when people trade out college roomates.

As for gay rights, let them have their civil unions, who is it really going to hurt? Answer: nobody. If they are worried about gay people marrying and making more gay people I would love for someone to show me how two gay guys manage to have a baby that biologically contains half the genes of each. The religious right wing needs to get a damn clue.
Things were better when it was two guys in a dorm room.

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