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June 16th, 2008
08:43 PM ET

The California Supreme Court's attack on marriage

[cnn-photo-caption image=http://i.cdn.turner.com/cnn/2008/images/06/16/art.gaymarriagecake.jpg caption="Same-sex wedding cake topper figurines are seen at Cake and Art in West Hollywood, California"]
Tony Perkins
President of Family Research Council

When the clock chimed 5:01 p.m. PST, the California ruling that threatens to undo thousands of years of natural marriage officially took effect, triggering five months of social chaos that could wreak havoc on every state in America.

Homosexual couples hoping to make history will race down the aisle as early as tonight in at least two counties where clerks of court offices have agreed to stay open late and "marry" homosexuals.

Kern and Butte Counties won't be among them–not even tomorrow, when the homosexual wedding march will begin across California in earnest. Thanks to the courage of County Clerks Ann Barnett and Candace Grubbs, the local offices will stop performing wedding ceremonies altogether.

To comply with the law, Kern and Butte Counties will still issue marriage licenses, but they refuse to subject their staff to the Supreme Court's blatant disregard for traditional morality and individual religious rights.

In an interview with the Los Angeles Times, Ann Barnett says that the decision to stand up to the liberal establishment has not been an easy one for her or her family. Kern's County Clerk has been a target of hate mail, received so many threats at home that she's disconnected her telephone, and been labeled a "religious terrorist" by hostile critics.

While same-sex crusaders trumpet tolerance for their behavior, where is their tolerance for Barnett's beliefs? You won't find it. Even the Kern County Supervisor, Don Maben, is insensitive to her rights as a government employee. "[S]he made a unilateral decision and just shut everyone off."

Sound familiar? It should, since that's exactly what the California Supreme Court did by disenfranchising more than four million voters who defined marriage as the union of a man and woman in 2000. In the end it is not about tolerance at all, it about forced acceptance.

We applaud the brave men and women in California who are risking their jobs and safety to rebuff this coordinated attack on marriage.

The Republican leadership and presidential candidates could stand to learn a thing or two from these local statesmen. We urge them to take this opportunity to weigh in publicly on the importance of marriage and pledge their support for the marriage protection amendment this fall.

Meanwhile, FRC will continue to bring its educational message to the state, where our ads in Sacramento and Orange County are reminding voters what the California court has now done to injure families and undermine the well being of children.

Editor's note: This from the Family Research Council ran over the weekend in the Sacramento Bee and the Orange County Register.

See Campbell Brown's live interview with Tony Perkins tonight at 10p.
The Family Research Council is a Washington think-tank. Tony Perkins is also the author of  Personal Faith, Public Policy.


Filed under: 360° Radar • Gay & Lesbian Issues • Tony Perkins
soundoff (189 Responses)
  1. Rev. Dr. Brendan K Callahan

    "To comply with the law, Kern and Butte Counties will still issue marriage licenses, but they refuse to subject their staff to the Supreme Court’s blatant disregard for traditional morality and individual religious rights."

    What about the individual religious rights of those getting married? Not all religions say gay marriage is wrong. Marriage, in all 50 states, is not a religious issue for the governement - every single state defines marriage as a civil contract.

    "Sound familiar? It should, since that’s exactly what the California Supreme Court did by disenfranchising more than four million voters who defined marriage as the union of a man and woman in 2000. In the end it is not about tolerance at all, it about forced acceptance."

    The courts did the same thing when miscegnation laws were ruled against. Rights are either rights or they are not - they should certainly never be up to majority rule. We wouldn't even think of voting as defining marriage as only between persons of the same race - so why should we between those of the same sex? We can even legitemately debate whether or not it is a right, but *never* vote on it.

    There's a simple solution to all of this, really. If you don't like gay marriage, then I suggest not marrying a gay person. But then again, that takes all the steam out of your sails, doesn't it?

    June 16, 2008 at 11:16 pm |
  2. Bart from Canada

    I live in a country were same sex marriage has been legal for 3 years, 5 in my province. This is a non issue. The sky hasn't fallen, nor has it in other countries where this is law. It is the Family Research Council not the proponents of these unions that are encroaching on individual rights. The Family Research Council should really change its came to better reflect it's mandate, how about 'The Suppression of Individual Sexual Rights and Freedoms Council. They cannot produce one non-biblical argument or statistic to support their cause. SSM is not an attack on marriage. As a heterosexual married person I feel that in NO WAY is my marriage of less worth because gays can marry. Actually I now feel, that marriage, the institution that frames my relationship with my wife has been elevated as its no longer discriminatory. By being discriminatory marriage is an invalid institution akin to all whites social club.

    June 16, 2008 at 11:15 pm |
  3. Sean

    I applaud his article and his views. As I posted on the alternative 360 view, many of you are missing the point. The Cal. Supreme court clearly went against the view of the people. A poster stated that the cause was lost and the tide was turning. Sorry but you are completely wrong. The 62% that voted this for this ban consitutes a majority in this country and in Nov. it will be determined thru a same sex ban on the Cal. constitution.

    June 16, 2008 at 11:14 pm |
  4. Patrick

    I agree with Mr. Perkins that this decision is detremental to the moral fabric of the nation, which is already stretched thin. This debate is most often cast as a rights issue and so I will respond in such a manner. For thousands of years marriage has been the fundamental unilateral building block of families and in turn cultures. For a group of openly practicing homosexuals to determine to so radically redefine what has been the fundamental building block of all human culture in order to validate their own lifestyle decisions is an arrogance of gargantuan proportion. Marriage has always referred to a unique relationship between people who are complementary to one another in both biology and personality that will serve to reproduce children, be held in honor and fidelity, and last for life. What we've witnessed is the determination of a few to hijack the institution of marriage from generations and civilizations that have submitted to marriage as a core of culture. Between this radical redefinition of marriage and the proliferation of no-fault divorce law, the institution of marriage is essentially being so watered down that it will soon be meaningless. The next step will be to legalize polygamy, at which point the institution of marriage will be destroyed – there will be absolutely no criteria left to marriage. As a white male, I would love to con some activist judge into redefining "whites" as a racial minority so that I can take advantage of affirmative action hiring policies and school admissions policies for my children, but that would be absurd. I can't help but feel that is what we've witnessed today – the ridiculous redefinition of a societal and legal institution for the whim of a small minority.

    June 16, 2008 at 11:14 pm |
  5. Jesus Ramirez

    As I was reading the CNN.com news earlier today, I came across an article in which you reported that a man that was beating on a 1-2 year old boy, did not stop beating the boy until the man (killed by police fire) and boy (killed by the coward) were both dead. Tonight, I logged on to your website to see if there was any news on the occurance, which I felt is very worthy of news coverage, as I believe everyone should be made aware of the event and everyone should be in a state of outrage. Well, needless to say, I did not find any news concerning the dispicabel (sp) event. I did however, get to see a picture of a couple of old grey haired lesbians kissing each other in what appears to be california's attempt at changing the world. Hey california, wake up, the man killing the kid with his bare hands happened in your state, figure out why he did it, before you waste your time on whether or not a boy should marry a boy and a girl a girl. Please understand that I, and a lot of people who feel the way I do, feel that, if like you say the rest of the nation will follow suite, will be there on the front lines of both my states (TX born and raised / Florida in the end) to let you know, that as always your plan will not succeed. I served my country for 22 years so that you can exercise your right to perpetuate your ideas and shred my constitution in the process, but I did not serve in vain and I believe in my governments ability to protect what I served for and disregard the san francisco mayor as . . . (I'm drawing a blank, as well as I should be). P.S. I did not capitalize california, san francisco, and mayor on purpose, as capitilzation is a sign of respect, of which I feel you are not worthy.

    June 16, 2008 at 11:13 pm |
  6. Kelly

    Just amazing. And not so long ago interracial marriage was outlawed as well. Blacks marrying whites! What havoc! Please. Instead of judging others expression of love, you and others like you should start exploring your continous expressions of hate.

    I dont exactly see all of you self appointed "marriage saviors" standing outside courtrooms protesting straight couples from multiple divorces over their lifetimes. Isnt that ironic.

    June 16, 2008 at 11:13 pm |
  7. James Dylan

    "Marriage: thus I name the will of the two to create the one that is more then those who created it. Reverence for one another, as those willing with such a will, is what I call marriage." Friedrich Nietzsche. I also believe marriage is meant for man and woman and that the act of creation can not be broken regardless of what anyone wants to call marriage. But the poor religious version of what Perkins calls the sanctity of marriage was destroyed when divorce became an option, most definitely not with homosexual marriage. The individual well-being became more important than that of the marriage well-being. Right or wrong can only be decided by the individual situation. Such as mine, I was much better off not being raised around my father.

    To allow gays to marry doesn't weaken my or any version of marriage , but makes it stronger. I, like my Sioux forebears, see the gay person as one with two souls and a blessing to mankind. They further define who I am. Perhaps in the future marriage will further be defined much differently and deeply than Nietzsche thought. When two gay couples get together to have children.

    Gay marriage: thus I name the will of the FOUR to create the one that is more than those who created it. Reverence for one another, as those willing with such a will, is what I call gay marriage. A better grasp of, taking a village to raise a child.

    June 16, 2008 at 11:10 pm |
  8. Mitchell

    Mr Perkins, are you so insecure in your own marriage that just because two men who love each other are getting married, you feel threatened somehow??? Whatever happened to the first amendment, specifically the portion that states, "Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion". If this country professes the freedom of religion, then the freedom to not believe in Christianity should also be protected. If these couples wants to marry, they should have every right to do so. And if you are that concerned about immorality, maybe you should focus on Ted Haggard instead, your very own Christian Standard Bearer.

    I am also looking forward to a Democratic Majority in both chambers of Congress and the first African American president. It's time the Republicans are put in their place.

    June 16, 2008 at 11:09 pm |
  9. Edwin

    Marriage was created for man and woman, not for couples of the same sex. It is a union created by God, not by man. That is why our families are so disturbed, and you see so many weird things, crimes, murders, it is because the root of the family is being changed daily.

    June 16, 2008 at 11:07 pm |
  10. J.L.Osborne

    I agree with Mr. Perkins.
    I support the clerks who refuse to perform "marriages" for same sex couples.
    I pay taxes and have for 30 years, and I also vote according to the Judeo Christian principles upon which this country was established.

    June 16, 2008 at 11:06 pm |
  11. Ann

    Tony - go back forty years and substitute "negro" for "gay" – you're saming the same crap the opponents on inter-racial marriage said in 1968 when the US Supreme Court finally struck down the law against that. I heard you on CNN tonight say "only a small, vocal, minority of HOMOSEXUALS" support this "radical" change in the marriage law. Are you truly delusional, or just an incredible liar? I think the latter.

    June 16, 2008 at 11:05 pm |
  12. Smith

    disgusting!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    June 16, 2008 at 11:04 pm |
  13. Albert

    Once a few of our gay and lesbians go throught the divorce process that american men go through, they will be wishing otherwise. I beleive that marriage should be completely abolished. People should be able to check in and check out of relationships as needed.

    June 16, 2008 at 11:04 pm |
  14. Matthew Miller

    Here is a real fact that should just end this whole discussion about right and wrong:
    homosexuals have the right to be just as miserable as heterosexual married couples, if they chose to be.
    More than half of all marriages end in divorce Mr. Perkins, and as for those who stay married, we can't honestly say they are all happy marriages, can we?
    Yes, there are exceptions to that, as even a broken clock is right twice a day. However, it is interesting to point out that I hear of and know of many homosexual relationships that have lasted over 30 years....

    June 16, 2008 at 11:03 pm |
  15. Ted

    With all due respect Mr. Perkins, anyone who is this dedicated to stopping marriage between to consenting adult homosexuals, is a closet homosexual themselves. We have seen this time and time again, especially in the republican party. The rest of us are just concerned with our own marriages.

    Embrace your homosexuality and give us all a break.

    June 16, 2008 at 11:01 pm |
  16. Carin

    Mr. Perkins,

    No one is asking to marry you. Isn't marriage essentially between two people, and then their child(ren) should they choose to raise any? Do you intrude on all your neighbors' personal decisions? In the United States of America?

    Unless you see abuse, get over it. How can you be so arrogant that you believe other, law abiding citizens cannot choose with whom to raise children, who will get to make life decisions in case of accident or illness, who will inherit, indeed, who will scratch the place on our backs we can't itch? Just as the miscegenation bigotry was eradicated, soon, this too will be gone.

    Please think more carefully before condemning others to a lesser status. We are all human, born with inalienable rights. This is not a tiered society, my religion is not yours to choose, yours is not mine. As you are legally barred from dictating to me, I am barred from dictating to you. Enjoy your choices, accept the others.

    June 16, 2008 at 11:01 pm |
  17. Beth Messler

    If Mr Perkins spent the same amount of time trying to block equal civil rights for gay and lesbian people on more serious family issues such as the current divorce rate among heterosexual couples, the plight of single parent homes, deadbeat dads, etc. Some of these gay couples who have lived in loving families for decades may be able to assist Mr Perkins with working toward solutions for real family problems. Lets focus on what we have in common, not what keeps us at odds with one another. Don't be afraid of us Tony. We care about you too!

    June 16, 2008 at 11:01 pm |
  18. Chad

    What's happening to Ann Barnett is just horrible...although it pales in comparison to what homosexuals have endured for generations. I pray that she's not further inconvenienced.

    With the majority of marriages now ending in divorce, same-sex marriages could hardly do much harm to the institution–and indeed may very well redeem it. Having been denied marriage for so long, one would hope that they cherish it more than so many hetrosexuals have.

    Instead of fighting to deny marriages to loving couples, Mr. Perkins, your time would be better spent working to reduce divorces and keeping fathers engaged with their children post-divorce.

    June 16, 2008 at 11:00 pm |
  19. Beth B

    I can't believe you are making this front page news.

    Really disappointed in CNN to see this story of two older lesbians getting married as the lead story for this evening.

    What is the process for determing what gets the front page? I kept coming to CNN to see the latest on the flood in the Midwest, and the fighting in Afghanistan. But no, this is the top news.

    We will ever be able to get over this issue and move on? C'mon. As far as gay marriage is concerned, as long as they don't make it mandatory, who cares??

    June 16, 2008 at 10:58 pm |
  20. Laura

    Amen, Mr. Perkins. I am grateful to see someone standing up for what is best for families and best for our society. Keep up the good work.

    June 16, 2008 at 10:58 pm |
  21. Angela

    The decision of two adults, regardless of gender, to enter into marriage is their business and has nothing to do with me or my family (unless we're invited to the wedding). I believe that 50 years ago or so similar editorials about racially mixed marriages were common (it's not God's law!) and amazingly the earth did not stop turning after Loving vs. Virginia.
    I have better things to worry about than two men or two women arguing over whose turn it is to pick up the dry cleaning or how to spend the stimulus check. Mr. Perkins might have better things to worry about as well, but maybe he's avoiding them.

    June 16, 2008 at 10:57 pm |
  22. Jason

    What bothers me is that the Supreme Court, in one magnanimous move, put aside the will of the people and forced gay marriage upon them. I don't really care one way or another whether gays marry, but I am deeply bothered by the thought that the judiciary can impose its own laws, in direct contradiction to the will of the people of California.

    June 16, 2008 at 10:57 pm |
  23. Mark Tomasovich

    Classic marraige is between a man and a women.If same sex people want to have a legal bond, please just call it something else!

    June 16, 2008 at 10:56 pm |
  24. Sophie

    Thank you for your excellent article. God bless you for writing it.

    Soon the tide will turn as people realize the truth because of a sovereign move of God that will be so strong that nothing will be able stop it. The foundations of righteousness will be restored in this nation. Then multitudes of broken, hurting people will know God's love and honor Him again and turn from their wicked ways.

    In the mean time, may God help these tragically deceived people for whom Jesus died and to whom he offers full and free forgiveness for every sin if they will only turn to Him and humbly repent.

    June 16, 2008 at 10:56 pm |
  25. Flor in Calif

    I am a born and raised Christian woman and married to a man, but that just happens to be my choice. I feel every adult deserves to marry the person they love. I don't feel this is an attack on my marriage in any way. I don't feel this hurts anyone and they should be allowed to marry and celebrate just like I did with my family. I would not take that away from anyone. We need to move forward.

    June 16, 2008 at 10:53 pm |
  26. Jay Parks

    I think same sex marriage is wonderful, although I don't want any part of it, there is too many people in the world now. What a great way to stop this crisis.

    Jay

    June 16, 2008 at 10:53 pm |
  27. David

    I commend both Ann Barnett and Candace Grubbs for their integrity. I'm find comfort that they are trying to do what is right, even if the new law making branch of the government (the supreme court) has made new laws. I thank them and others like them for their courage dispite the bigots who clamor for tolerance but deny other for thier beliefs.

    June 16, 2008 at 10:53 pm |
  28. Terry - Brampton

    You do not protect your rights and freedoms, by denying them to others.

    I do not see anything that will harm me, my family, my grandchildren in
    Gay marriages.

    And I still will beleive in God, just as much as Mr. Perkins....I'm just not as much of a loud-mouth or show-off about it.

    June 16, 2008 at 10:53 pm |
  29. Tim

    What's more important? A civil servant's religious rights or my religious rights? My religious beliefs do not condemn homosexuality nor same-sex marriage. If a civil servant doesn't approve of same-sex marriage then she shouldn't marry another woman.

    A civil servant's refusal to marry same-sex couples is completely irrelevant in any case. Marriage is a CIVIL ceremony. You can get married in a church, but it's not legal without the marriage license from the state.

    The state – including a headstrong, bigoted civil servant – has no business imposing religious views on anyone.

    June 16, 2008 at 10:53 pm |
  30. mark

    i find it laughable, and amazingly hypocritical that, while the right wing has spent so much time and effort fighting against perceived affronts to the sanctity of marriage, numerous members of the republican party are having affairs with their pages, divorcing their wives, sending pornography to pages. wasn't it jesus who said, "why do you look at the speck of sawdust in your brother's eye, and pay no attention to the plank in your own eye." if you people are truly interested in preserving the sanctity of marriage, let me see you fight to outlaw divorce itself. admit it, it has nothing to do with the sanctity of marriage. it's all about your homophobia.

    June 16, 2008 at 10:53 pm |
  31. Dawn from MA

    This is a hilarious blog. "Where is the tolerance of intolerance?" As nonsensical an article I've ever read. What wonderful satire of the Conservative Right!

    I'm getting married in MA this summer and I just want to say, knowing that my friends – gay and straight – can all marry whomever they want – makes my marriage mean all the much more, because I am not enjoying something exclusive to 9/10 of the population, but something universally available in my state. I am so happy that California has also decided to eliminate this form of discrimination, and hope that other states will soon follow suit!

    Kids do best with two parents who love them and love each other. Period.

    June 16, 2008 at 10:52 pm |
  32. Mr. Lee

    Upon hearing that at 1701 hrs on 16 June 2008 gay marriages were legalized in California, my mind was filled with disgust. Aside from the radical liberal polices already in place in California, this blatant attack on the definition of marriage is unwarranted. First of all, the highly infiltrated radical courts of California are not the place to decide an issue such as this. As I recall, voters soundly rejected redefining the definition of marriage a couple of years ago. Why are the courts trying to change things? I'm sure when we have the vote on this issue later this year, the voters of California will again reject the ludicrous practice of Gay Marriage.
    Stacy, stop changing the subject from Gay Marriage to why people get divorced.
    C, California, what does families living in poverty have to do with Gay Marriage?
    Claire, you have a point, but you must keep in mind that through democratic practice, Californians already voted on this issue and rejected Gay Marriage. Gays and their counterparts SHOULD live in the shadows becausa their practices are against Natural Law. I'm not talking about against the Bible, the Constitution of California, or common sense. I am talking about why males are males, why females are females. Gay Marriage is one step in the wrong direction. Humans re-create, and Nature intended opposing sexes to be together to support this. Two of the same sex in an official relationship such as a marriage serves no purpose other than to mock the morals that have been around since the beginning of time. I love a lot of people, even males! This does not mean I am going to marry them! I think Gays misinterpret their relationships with same sex counterparts. They are just good friends, and should leave it at that.
    If people want to be Gay together, they need to do it behind closed doors because no one wants to see such disgusting, immoral behavior on our streets. Closed doors will not really help though, because God sees everything. Some sins are forgivable, others are not. Keep this in mind.
    On a conclusive note, I pledge to you all that I will fight this Court decision to my grave. This is one of the most disturbing events in California since the 1989 Assault Weapons Ban. Does anyone see California growing more and more like a Socialist State?

    June 16, 2008 at 10:51 pm |
  33. Chris

    Nonsensical drivel, as usual. You've lost Mr. Perkins, move on.

    June 16, 2008 at 10:51 pm |
  34. Raymond G. Adams

    As someone who has been married to the same woman for over 25 years, I would like to add my comment to this issue. Being with the one you love is the most important aspect of our very short lives. My wife has endured breast cancer and a brain tumor, so we both know this fact very well. We BOTH support, with all our hearts, the decision of California to sanction the union of couples in marriage – ANY COUPLES; be they man and woman, man and man, or woman and woman. It is time to end the discrimination against gays and lesbians. Gays and lesbians are members of our families; they are our brothers, our sisters, our sons, and our daughters. Their love is as important, as honorable, as sacred as is the traditionally accepted love of a man and a woman.

    June 16, 2008 at 10:50 pm |
  35. Laura Paxton

    Does Anderson Cooper back this opinion? I am shocked. Gay couples marrying is no threat to marriage. Straight marriages will continue. There are a lot of reasons why people get divorced and why the divorce rate is so high and none of them have to do with gay marriages. It's ridiculous. It's a narrow minded view of marriage, based on some Christian beliefs, that marriage should be between a man and a woman. I'm a Christian, and I do not agree. Why not expand the definition? Straight marriage will still continue, failing at the same rate it has been.

    June 16, 2008 at 10:45 pm |
  36. Larry

    Can you just imagine what this is going to do to all the genealogists out there? Thought that Plutoid was gonna wreak havoc with textbooks and dvds on astronomy; wait til you get genealogists trying to work on family trees:)

    June 16, 2008 at 10:40 pm |
  37. Claire in Birmingham, AL

    If two people who love each other enough to want to proclaim it to the world and where they pledge to spend the rest of their lives together... that is something to CELEBRATE, not condemn.

    Just because someone may be different from you, sir, doesn't make them evil. Just because someone may or may not be attracted to the same sex as you, doesn't automatically make them a 'threat'.

    Who are you to say who can and cannot marry? Who are you to make unjust accusations about your fellow man? Our own Declaration of Independence says "we hold these truths to be self evident, that all men are created equal"....not all STRAIGHT men. ALL men, sir.

    Gay people are no less human than you. They bleed, they love, they laugh, they are NO DIFFERENT. How dare you accuse them otherwise! It is people like you - who have the same small-minded, ignorant views - that are contributing to the chaos that our world is today. It's not "homosexuality"...it's the persecution of it.

    Think about that and consider how 'righteous' you truly are.

    June 16, 2008 at 10:28 pm |
  38. Franky

    Wow!!! What a cool update!! Is like is high-tech all over again! pretty cool guys, pretty cool....

    And as for the gay marriage, I mean, is California! California is crazy!! I'm not gonna lie but I don't know if I'm ready for legalizing gay marriage here in the states. I don't know guys, is crazy you could say. I will respect their decision but overall, I don't know what to think, I don't know what to think......only time will tell.

    June 16, 2008 at 10:27 pm |
  39. Jessica

    Time to come out of the closet, Tony perkins! It's usually the ones hating on something the most who are trying to hide their own association with which they hate.

    Look at the republican party in general – they have the same views on gay marriage as you, yet look at the number of them who have to resort to unsafe, illicit trysts because they want to be with someone they're attracted to but they feel the need to not "be found out".

    When you decide to look inward and accept your own feelings you won't be so hateful towards these loving couples and you hopefully also won't be so ashamed of your attractions

    June 16, 2008 at 10:26 pm |
  40. Gary Chandler in Canada

    Why can heritage houses be legally protected, and native rights preserved; but straights cannot keep the tradition of their institution? If I was gay, I would care less about being 'married'. Heck, I would even consider it a sign of latent heterosexuality.
    Live how you want, but don't steal another groups sacrament. Gays are generally very creative, why can't they 'invent' something like 'life bond' or 'soul mates'?
    What's up with all this gay pride? I guess all along it has been just the opposite, can't be married. wahhh

    June 16, 2008 at 10:17 pm |
  41. Becca Lind

    Mr. Perkins-

    Hm...I need you to explain something to me here...you wrote "Thanks to the courage of County Clerks Ann Barnett and Candace Grubbs, the local offices will stop performing wedding ceremonies altogether." Now, that seems like a fine statement..however, there's one word that's used, i feel, incorrectly. Now, maybe i'm just picking on semantics here, buuut i think you actually meant "thanks to the [i]cowardice[/i] of Ann Barnett and Candace Grubbs..." not courage.

    You see, it's courageous for the Supreme Court to pass a bill and willingly face the "wrath of god" in order to grant happiness to hundreds of homosexuals, it's courageous for gay men and women to come out and get married, despite the hate they have to endure from people like you, it is FAR from courageous to try and belittle those efforts taken by the government to ensure happiness for all in our society, whether by having a blatant disregard for the law and refusing to practice it as it's written, OR by writing an article extolling those who refuse to practice while simultaneously mocking the courage of the supreme court.

    Oh, another thing, "We applaud the brave men and women in California who are risking their jobs and safety to rebuff this coordinated attack on marriage." About that...I find this to be strange...see...the only person I see attacking marriage here is you, and those who've been brainwashed by people like you, and I assume you can't POSSIBLY mean your pals Anne and Candace when you say "brave men and women" becuase, well, as we've already discussed....disparaging real bravery is nothing but shameful cowardice.

    I don't want you to think I disagree with the entire article, though. The part where you say "The Republican leadership and presidential candidates could stand to learn a thing or two from these local statesmen" I completely, 100% agree with. These local statesmen can certainly teach our presidential candidates something. They are teaching them what NOT to do in order to become president. Wonderful observation there, Mr. Perkins.

    June 16, 2008 at 10:17 pm |
  42. Annie Kate

    Mr. Perkins

    I think you over exaggerate – I don't see how 2 people who love each other being together undermine the marriage of other people or do a disservice to children. In the work place we are taught to respect diversity – we should be respectful of diversity outside the work place as well.

    Annie Kate
    Birmingham AL

    June 16, 2008 at 10:06 pm |
  43. rachel b.

    Mr. Perkins, I completely disagree with you. I am a gay teenager in high school and am constantly getting made fun of and bastardized for my sexual orientation. People seem to think that my orientation threatens who they are or what there future will become. I fail to understand how my marriage, whether it be with a male or female, has any effect on how you live. And I know that this is a repetititous point, but I am still quite shocked by your point of view. And as it is stated by CNN's Hilary Rosen, "This is not a nation that tolerates intolerance anymore." Hopefully this means that your future, closed minded thoughts will be ignored and disregarded.

    June 16, 2008 at 9:54 pm |
  44. Kathy, Andover

    It's between the couple that wants to get married!

    June 16, 2008 at 9:53 pm |
  45. Tammy, Berwick, LA

    Hmm...I thought God loved all His kids and wanted their happiness. Apparently the religious right once again know more than God. Someone please share the memo with Him.

    June 16, 2008 at 9:33 pm |
  46. Stacy

    Please explain to me how two consenting adults wanting to officially proclaim their love is an attack on marriage. If you truly want to defend marriages, Mr. Perkins, your time might be better spent focusing on the reasons why people get divorced.

    In any regards, the fact of the matter is your side has already lost. The tide is turning and there's nothing you can do to change it back. Like interracial marriage before it, in the coming years gay marriage will be legal and the majority of the country will be wondering what all the fuss was in the first place.

    June 16, 2008 at 9:23 pm |
  47. C, California!

    How does gay marriage "wreak havoc" on America? How does two adults loving each other and wanting to take care of one another harm anyone?

    If you are so concerned about families and children, why don't you focus your energy on battered wives, abused and neglected children, or families living in poverty?

    Do you realize how stupid is sounds to try to make an issue of this when there are so many other IMPORTANT things going on.

    Gay marriage is not a sexual issue it is a civil rights issue. I can't understand how, in America, a segment of the population is still denied their rights and have to live in the shadows.

    Get a life, Mr. Perkins.

    June 16, 2008 at 9:21 pm |
  48. Journey, Abilene, TX

    Massachusetts hasn't spiraled into "social chaos" or "wreaked havoc" on the rest of the country yet. In fact, it has one of the lowest divorce rates in the country.

    So much for your hateful fearmongering, Mr. Perkins.

    June 16, 2008 at 9:10 pm |
  49. Peter Beckman

    Mr Perkins,

    Lets get a few things straight (no pun intended). The Kern County Clerk's marriage ceremony program was vastly successful. So successful, in fact, that in fiscal 2007, 44% of all marriage ceremonies that occurred in Kern County occurred at the Clerk's Office.

    Ann Barnett has consistently asserted (although almost no one believes her) that her decision has nothing to do with religion, but was motivated by financial, space and security concerns. The problem with this story is the fact that she did not discuss any of these matters with other County officers. Before making such and important decision, good faith required that Barnett discuss space and security concerns with the County Administrative Officer (who manages the building the Clerk's Office is located in) in order to see what could be worked out. She did not do so, the first time the County Administrative Officer knew that Barnett was claiming there was a problem was when he read her press release cancelling the program. Similarly, Barnett did not discuss any financial problems with the Board of Supervisors (which funds her office) prior to cancelling the program. In Kern County it is unheard of for any official to cancel a major program withough discussing the matter with the Board of Supervisors. In addition, in her last annual report to the Board, Barnett claimed that the marriage program made money.

    So, if Barnett based her decision on her religious beliefs, then she is a liar. If she did it for administrative reasons, as she claims, you just wasted a column.

    June 16, 2008 at 9:03 pm |
  50. Claire

    I'm sorry Mr Perkins but I have to disagree with you. I don't see how 2 people that love each and want to spend their lives together hurts "natural" marriages. No one's marriage is anyone's business, except their own. People can choose to focus on their own lives and that of their family or they can choose to focus on other people's lives and judge them.

    No one is without sin in this world and until we are maybe we need to stop judging others and leave that up to God.

    June 16, 2008 at 9:01 pm |
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