Senators Introduce Marriage Redefinition Bill

         Senator Ed Murray filed his much-anticipated bill redefining "marriage" in Washington law to include same-sex relationships on Friday. The bill will officially be introduced on Monday, January 16th.


        Senate Bill 6239 would recognize so-called "marriages" between members of the same sex.


        Same-sex couples would be allowed to "marry" as soon as the bill goes into effect. That would be ninety days after the end of the legislative session, unless a referendum petition is filed. Additionally, all same-sex domestic partnerships would automatically be considered "marriages" after June 30, 2014, unless one of the domestic partners is at least 62 years old.


        Beginning June 30, 2014 domestic partnerships would be limited to couples in which at least one person is 62 years or older. Both opposite-sex and same-sex couples will continue to be able to obtain domestic partnerships if at least one of them is 62 years or older. Same-sex domestic partners could voluntarily choose to convert their domestic partnership to a so-called "marriage," even if one of them is 62 years or older. Essentially, the bill is replacing domestic partnerships for most same-sex couples with so-called "marriages."


       While this bill ostensibly protects religious freedom, it still leaves ample opportunity for people of faith, and possibly even churches, to be sued for refusing to participate in so-called same-sex "marriage."


       Please call the legislative hotline at 1-800-562-6000 to send a message to your legislators about this bill.


Posted by David Broadus on January 18, 2012
Gay marriage has never 'harmed' any straight person. It simply honours the love of two people of the same sex in the same way that a marriage of a man and a woman does. What gives anyone the right to say that my love for my husband is not as important as your love for yours? Nonsense. Some people are gay. 99% of teens and young adults have gay friends and upwards of 80% of people under 30 support gay marriage. One sounds really stupid when ranting about harms that never have and never will happen.
Posted by Kay E. Francis on January 17, 2012
What gives them the right to change what the good book saids a man and a woman joined in holy matrimony!!
Posted by David Simonton on January 17, 2012
Evelyn Chaney, you believe it would be "disastrous" for my one-year-old daughter to have the protection of having married parents? It would be disastrous if she and my husband were protected from poverty in the event of my death because maybe someday they won't be denied the same social security survivorship rights that your family already enjoys? It would be disastrous if her family weren't relegated to second-class citizenship? That might be funny if I weren't convinced you actually believe such nonsense.
Posted by Bill Hoover on January 16, 2012
Does anyone realize that in Section 2 of the bill the terms "husband" and "wife" are rendered "gender neutral"? Does anyone care? Instead of working to create new terms and laws that provide for the special needs of homosexual relationships, that same lobby has exhibited an intellectual laziness by redefining what they can't create for themselves. Writing a bill that "equalizes" homosexual with heterosexual relationships ignores the obvious, blurs the distinctions and weakens the law.
Posted by Evelyn Chaney on January 16, 2012
Laurie Lemke says it all. This would be disastrous for any children they plan to buy, negotiate, etc. since they obviously cannot have their own.
Posted by Laurie Lembke on January 16, 2012
I plead with the Legislatures to not redefine marriage. Here I quote from two Scholars on the subject of the Biblical Definition of Marriage and What could happen if Marriage is redefined: Quotes are from a Pdf file: Irvin A. Busenitz Vice President for Academic Administration Professor of Bible and Old Testament A clear pattern of attack on the biblical definition of marriage has emerged alongside the recent widespread propagation of a homosexual agenda. The ultimate goal of the widely publicized deviant lifestyle is to destroy marriage, reverse sodomy laws, and force acceptance of different rules on society as a whole. The movement comes in conjunction with an attempt to eliminate male-and-female gender distinctions and a reinterpretation of biblical texts that support those distinctions. In particular, the biblical command to love one another suffers from distortion as proponents of homosexuality plead for tolerance toward their deviations. Their proposals are a far cry from the biblical perspective on marriage as expressed in the Genesis account of creation. That account outlines five purposes of God in His creative work: reproduction, the union of one woman and one man, woman functioning as a complement to man, picturing the relationship between Christ and His church, and a fulfilling of distinctive roles by husband and by wife. A same-sex union cannot possibly fulfill any of such perspectives. In addition, the Mosaic Law clearly forbids homosexuality as does Paul’s epistle to the Romans. Scripture never approves of any sexual relationship except the marital, monogamous, one-woman, one-man union. * * * * * And Here is a warning from George Dent, writing in The Journal of Law and Politics, "......once same-sex marriage is affirmed, then other forms of “marriage” will quickly be affirmed as well, such as polygamy, endogamy (the marriage of blood relatives) and child marriage. In fact, the policy guide of the American Civil Liberties Union calls for the legalization of polygamy, stating, “The ACLU believes that criminal and civil laws prohibiting or penalizing the practice of plural marriage violate constitutional protections for freedom of expression and association, freedom of religion, and privacy for personal relationships among consenting adults.”7
Posted by Rev. Donald Schmidt on January 16, 2012
I'm intrigued - unless the Washington state bill is substantially (read: hugely) different from those introduced elsewhere, fortunately we - pastors and churches - cannot be sued for refusing to perform same-sex marriages. This is, sadly a bit of a red herring. We cannot currently be sued for refusing to marry anyone - it is a freedom of religion right that we cannot be refused to perform any ritual, an in fact churches are allowed to refuse access to a ritual based on their beliefs (e.g., the Roman Catholic Church can refuse to allow certain people to receive communion.) So, fortunately, I am quite confident we can rest assured that we will not be "forced" to perform any marriages we in god conscience do not wish to perform.
Posted by David Simonton on January 16, 2012
What additional religious freedom protections would you seek? I'm certain the bill's sponsors would love to have your input on this if you find the existing protections inadequate.

The reason for this is that unlike those on your side, I am actually concerned about doing harm to my fellow citizens. The problem with this whole "debate" is that only one side, yours, seeks to harm the other.

I ask what additional protections you would seek knowing full well that this is not your concern at all. No amount of protections would satisfy you.
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