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Overstock executive launches campaign to amend Utah Constitution over religious liberty

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  • JimE Kaysville, UT
    Aug. 9, 2013 10:59 p.m.

    Quite frankly, if it were ever to come to that. I think it would mean civil war. Liberals are pushing the envelope and its going to come back and bite them.

  • Hutterite American Fork, UT
    Aug. 10, 2013 12:20 a.m.

    churches should be able to practise what they believe. Within the context of the church, and it's members, and the law. If you really want more than that, for religion to hold a higher place than law, then watch out. Because then, you're inviting everyone to the table, and you have to give them equal seating.

  • marxist Salt Lake City, UT
    Aug. 10, 2013 12:35 a.m.

    "....would prohibit requiring a religious organization to "solemnize, officiate in, or recognize any particular marriage or religious rite of marriage in violation of its beliefs,"

    On the surface this seems perfectly reasonable. A religious faith has a right to determine whom to allow in its various rites, including marriage. But there are some pitfalls here. What about businesses owned by churches? These businesses offer benefits of various types. Would this amendment allow a religion to deny couples' benefits to LGBT folks who work for the businesses they own? Could religion refuse to hire LGBT people in the businesses they own? The Overstock CEO had better think long and hard about this. I'm sure he will.

  • Mainly Me Werribee, 00
    Aug. 10, 2013 12:38 a.m.

    What I find interesting is the claim by militant homosexuals that no religion will ever be forced to perform homosexual marriages, they just want "equal rights." The same thing was claimed in England and now there is a suit in the British courts by two homosexuals that will force churches to perform homosexual marriages. I'm sure the World Court will side with these men, since it's in the interest of social fairness.

    Guess, what? This is coming to a place near YOU.

  • Wilf 55 SALT LAKE CITY, UT
    Aug. 10, 2013 1:42 a.m.

    Fine if Johnson wants that assurance, but no church has ever been compelled to marry anyone it deems not compliant. The LDS Church uses the temple recommend to do so. The Catholic Church refuses to wed a man and a woman when one is divorced only civilly or has “perpetual impotence to have intercourse”. It’s Canon Law. No contest.

    Dabakis is right too: divide “marriage into a civil ceremony for all couples, and, if they choose, a separate religious rite performed in a house of worship.” That’s the way it’s done in most countries around the world: only civil marriage is legally valid. That civil marriage must precede any religious wedding, which is seen as an optional ceremony to “solemnize” the event, not a legal marriage. The church can refuse that ceremony if it deems the union inappropriate.

  • Epinephrine Grand Forks, ND
    Aug. 10, 2013 2:29 a.m.

    Forcing religious institutions to marry homosexuals WILL be a goal in the near future for the LGBT agenda because they will claim discrimination from a religious institution they may belong to.

  • A Scientist Provo, UT
    Aug. 10, 2013 3:20 a.m.

    Religious imperialists have been pushing the envelope of liberty and propriety for generations, and now it is coming back to bite them. We must be tolerant when they whine and express naive outrage as their hegemony is deconstructed.

  • Bebyebe UUU, UT
    Aug. 10, 2013 6:18 a.m.

    Public opinion has shifted. The law won't force churches to perform gay marriages, bad PR will.

  • RG Buena Vista, VA
    Aug. 10, 2013 7:07 a.m.

    Douglas Kmiec says it is unlikely that churches will be forced to provide same sex marriage. He's probably right. But if you asked people 30-40 years ago if we'd have gay marriage at all, they would have said unlikely, but look at what has happened. You just never know any more these days what the future will bring. We should have passed a US constitutional amendment against gay marriage when we had the chance. That chance is now long since passed.

  • ute alumni paradise, UT
    Aug. 10, 2013 7:13 a.m.

    never purchased anything on overstock brfore, i will now. thanks!

  • TA1 Alexandria, VA
    Aug. 10, 2013 7:25 a.m.

    I find it interesting that so many are interested in preserving "religious liberty" and yet no one seems to be interested in preserving "religion". Just an though - in twenty or thirty years down the road we will find ourselves with many constitutional amendments and laws preserving things like "religious liberty" and no one who is interested in religion. Perhaps we might want to re-examine the focus of these seemingly "well-intended" efforts.

  • DaveRL OGDEN, UT
    Aug. 10, 2013 7:32 a.m.

    Nothing like creating a law for something that doesn't exist, what a waste of time and energy . It seems more like a veil attempt to draw publicity to his company and collect money for other purposes. A wedding ceremony is only a religious experience for those that choose to do so. Marriage is still a civil union that require you to get a marriage license from a government entity, you then have the option to pick what kind of ceremony you want, be it church, Justice of the Peace, or a Las Vegas wedding chapel. Nothing requires churches to preform wedding ceremonies.

  • pragmatistferlife salt lake city, utah
    Aug. 10, 2013 7:46 a.m.

    JimE, when have you ever heard a liberal say a church needs to do anything within the limits of it's ecclesiastical functions that it doesn't believe in, much less perform marriages they don't condone? Churches only bump into secular authority when they step outside their ecclesiastical functions and operate in the secular world. They may believe they have an obligation to perform good works in the secular world, but functioning in the secular world obligates them to adhere to secular law even when performing good works.

    No one is required to have a religious marriage and never will, however, all marriages are authorized by the state and therefore subject to secular law. Secular society and law is changing but no need to require church's to do anything.

  • kolob1 sandy, UT
    Aug. 10, 2013 7:57 a.m.

    "Liberals are pushing the envelope and its going to come back and bite them." There are more Liberals than Conservatives. The coming conflict will be between the rich and the poor, not between Liberals and Conservatives. This effort about making churches perform same sex marriages is ridiculous. Not one decision, either at the Supreme Court level or at any of the Federal District court levels has declared that a church has to marry same sex couples.NOT ONE! This is a LEGAL issue, not a religious issue. Making and mixing it is the religious community's answer to Democracy, for them and them only. Leave it alone. You are losing the battle. Besides you don't support Democracy either. Johnson is trying to gain a tax advantage saying his business is a "religious" organization because of his beliefs. It'd amazing how the religious right is always trying to outflank taxes to their advantage but they want the taxpayers to foot the bill for their charter schools and vouchers.

  • JeffreyRO555 Auburn Hills, MI
    Aug. 10, 2013 8:10 a.m.

    Shouldn't the amendment include provisions for religions to also not accept divorces, since divorce is forbidden in the bible, to not accept marriages where the bride wasn't a virgin on her wedding night, since pre-marital sex is forbidden and therefore marriage isn't possible for the woman who isn't a virgin? The amendment should also include a provision that lets churches not recognize adulterous marriages, where one or both spouse(s) was previously married, and then divorced.

    I think it's really important to capture all the correct biblical marriage rules in this amendment and demonstrate a genuine commitment to God's word.

  • The Skeptical Chymist SALT LAKE CITY, UT
    Aug. 10, 2013 8:15 a.m.

    Jonathan Johnson need not fear that the government will force religious organizations to conduct marriages against their will. This is absolutely prohibited by the First Amendment.

    After all, no church has been forced to conduct inter-faith marriages if it is against their policy to do so.

    The LDS church has not been forced to conduct temple marriages of individuals who are deemed unworthy.

    The Catholic church has not been forced to marry individuals who have been previously divorced, which is against their policy.

    No church (to my knowledge) has been forced by the government to conduct interracial marriages, if it is against their policy.

    No church WILL be forced to conduct same-sex marriages if it is against their policy.

    All of these types of marriages are allowed by the federal government, at least in some jurisdictions, yet no church is required to conduct them.

    Johnson's worries are groundless.

    On the other hand, when a religious organization engages in commerce, then their commercial activities must obey the laws that all businesses are subject to.

  • Beverly Eden, UT
    Aug. 10, 2013 8:20 a.m.

    Misunderstanding often creates fear. The emotion that follows fear is anger. Utah, filled with people who don't understand the issues involved in gay rights are fearful. This fear is creating anger - which in turn, is supporting bad decisions. From denying African Americans the priesthood to supporting polygamy, bad decisions eventually give way. If this "Constitutional Amendment" gains national attention, Utahans, again, will find themselves on the fringes - marginalized by misunderstanding and intolerance.

  • JeffreyRO555 Auburn Hills, MI
    Aug. 10, 2013 8:21 a.m.

    I don't understand why religionists don't mind forcing their beliefs on others, such as trying to get creationism or prayer in public schools, or Ten Commandment memorials in public buildings, yet they chafe when they perceive that someone is forcing views on them! What's good for the goose is good for the gander, so to speak.

    The fact is, no church has ever been forced to perform a wedding for any couple it didn't want to. This amendment is just a way to poke gay people in the eye, and insult them.

  • Edd_Doerr Silver Spring, MD
    Aug. 10, 2013 8:24 a.m.

    This is a waste of time and effort. Clergy of all faiths cannot be compelled to officiate at weddings out of sync with their convictions, a right protected by the First Amendment. Catholic priests refuse to perform weddings for divorced persons. Orthodox rabbis will not perform weddings of non-Orthodox. Persons seeking wedding officiants have no trouble finding willing clergy, secular officials or humanist celebrants. We should be concerned about real religious liberty problems, such as the Republican drive to force all taxpayers to support religious private schools through vouchers or tax credits schemes (which Utah voters twice rejected), or the Republican drive to limit women's rights of conscience with regard to abortion. -- Edd Doerr, President, Americans for Religious Liberty (arlinc.org)

  • Cedarite Cedar City, UT
    Aug. 10, 2013 8:38 a.m.

    I haven't shopped at Overstock since the CEO called Utah voters stupid for not approving vouchers.

  • Reader Sandy, UT
    Aug. 10, 2013 8:45 a.m.

    Despite what the well-meaning attorneys say, I will guarantee you that we will see pressure from the LGT community on churches to perform same-sex marriages. I do think the protection of the rights of the churches will be more binding from laws on a federal not state level (look what happened in California). That being said, the protection of religious freedom is already in the constitution although many interpret it as freedom from religion than freedom of religion, and there is a huge difference.

  • Hey It's Me Salt Lake City, UT
    Aug. 10, 2013 8:45 a.m.

    Everyday new words are made up. Why can't one of the new words be "Pairage" it would mean uniting of any two individuals. Why do we have to change the definition of a word that has been around forever. Gay used to mean to be happy and cheerful , now it's a lifestyle. Let's have "Pairage" for any two individuals who want to be united lawfully.Then there doesn't have to be one side winning over the other. Everyone can be happy. Let's try to show the world we can be supportive of each other even if we don't agree.

  • RanchHand Huntsville, UT
    Aug. 10, 2013 8:56 a.m.

    The First Amendment gives you the right to freely practice your religion. Guess what, it also give me that same right. When you legislate your religious beliefs into law, you violate mine.

    Religious liberty in no way grants you the authority to violate the civil rights, or religious rights of others.

    Personally, I don't want a church marriage, but I DO want to marry my partner of 15 years. Why would I even want a bigot to perform the ceremony?

    And no, Johnson, marriage is not just a "state" issue; I am a Citizen of the United States of America and am a RESIDENT of Utah. As a Citizen of the USA, the Constitution guarantees that legal contracts in one state are recognized in others (marriage is a legal contract).

    How would you feel if you were married, divorced, married, divorced, married, divorced every few hours as you drove across the country?

  • Springvillepoet Springville, UT
    Aug. 10, 2013 8:56 a.m.

    "Equal protection seems to be unbounded and, speaking politically, it feels like what’s fair always wins over what might be right,"

    Here, Johnson is conflating "right" for legal. This is the essence of the issue. Those who oppose gay marriage keep confusing their 'belief' for what is legal. Gay marriage may not be in line with one's religious or moral beliefs, but those beliefs are not a basis for law with how the Constitution has been written and organized.

    It's not a matter of politics as Johnson states, it is, as he later admits, an issue with the 14th Amendment and equal protection under the law. So long as marriage offers legal rights and privileges which other legal contracts offer (and I would go so far as to suggest the Brown v. Board standard, in that the very act of separation proves inequality) marriage cannot be denied to any citizen of legal age/consent.

  • cstott Lehi, UT
    Aug. 10, 2013 9:00 a.m.

    Why would you want to be married by an institution that doesn't condone your lifestyle, habits or beliefs? This is yet another proof that the gay community doesn't want rights... it want's acceptance.

  • very concerned Sandy, UT
    Aug. 10, 2013 9:04 a.m.

    A lot of things were once "common sense", but now are under tremendous assault. I would say this kind of law is necessary to hold the line, providing true "common sense" in a world that lacks it.

    And lest you claim that gay rights are just like the civil rights of 1964, I disagree. The civil rights of 1964 were meant to protect people based on color of their skin, a completely innate characteristic of their genetics. That puts them in a different category than homosexuals. Science has not proven that this homosexual BEHAVIOR is unavoidable and an unavoidable genetic TRAIT. It's not the same. The scientific literatute in mixed on the subject of homosexuality. Billions of people have lived celibate lives.

    The great misperception that the GLBT community has somehow got us to buy into is that they are born homosexual with no chance of ever practicing abstinence.

    @Hutterite
    I don't see how protecting a churche's rights that are being slowly but steadily eroded and were once "common sense" is putting the church higher than the government. Nave you read the first amendment. It is proper and wise as it is written.

  • ParkCityAggie Park City, Ut
    Aug. 10, 2013 9:11 a.m.

    Just another mean spirited lame message bill, except this one will do nothing but cause ill feelings. Its like passing a law that says the sky is blue because we say it is. The Government cannot force a religious institution to marry anyone, not without running afoul of the constitution of the United States and a couple hundred years of legal precedent. Has a government agency ever successfully attempted to block a religious organization from excommunicating a member? Any church could simply threaten to ex any member seeking to wed a same sex partner and be done with it.

    Oh and @ute alumni - I've used overstock occasionally. Now I wont. Thanks

  • isrred South Jordan, UT
    Aug. 10, 2013 9:14 a.m.

    "What I find interesting is the claim by militant homosexuals that no religion will ever be forced to perform homosexual marriages, they just want "equal rights." The same thing was claimed in England and now there is a suit in the British courts by two homosexuals that will force churches to perform homosexual marriages."

    You keep bringing this up and either fail to recognize or willfully refuse to admit that the Church of England is the STATE SPONSORED religion. Its supreme governor is the Queen of England and exercises her power over the church via the Prime minister and parliament.

    This is in no way similar to anything that could happen here in the US. Marriage equality is the LAW in England, thus the STATE sponsored religion is being asked to follow the law by which is is governed.

  • Henry Drummond San Jose, CA
    Aug. 10, 2013 9:21 a.m.

    In 1967 the Supreme Court struck down laws prohibiting interracial marriage. It wasn't until eleven years later that the LDS Church changed its policy and allowed African Americans to have temple marriages. In the meantime nobody attempted to force them.

    At some point my conservative friends need to come to grips with the fact the majority of Americans accept Gay Marriage. I don't think we should be wasting the time of the State Legislatures to create yet more message bills when there is so much work to be done.

  • Lightbearer Brigham City, UT
    Aug. 10, 2013 9:26 a.m.

    From the article: "Religious liberty advocates also point to instances of private businesses being penalized by the state and the courts for not accommodating same-sex couples because it would violate the owners' religious beliefs."

    Jesus said, "In everything, treat others as you would want them to treat you, for this fulfills the law and the prophets."

    If these owners are Christians, why doesn't it bother them to act in a manner contrary to what Jesus taught?

    "In everything, treat others as you would want them to treat you."

    When they violate Jesus's teachings, aren't they violating their own religious beliefs?

    "In everything, treat others as you would want them to treat you."

    When they go to a business as customers, how would they want to be treated?

  • EDM Castle Valley, Utah
    Aug. 10, 2013 9:31 a.m.

    Good grief. Is gay marriage really that scary?

  • very concerned Sandy, UT
    Aug. 10, 2013 9:38 a.m.

    Here is the final word on religious rights (or what SHOULD be the final words). "Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; . . . " (First Amendment).

    I cannot at the moment think of more appropriate words to sum up the current disputs! "make no law prohibiting the free exercise thereof". That is EXACTLY what will happen if we do not take measures to protect and defend this amendment and protect religiouse rights.

    A family member, quite intelligent and 50% of another race lives here in the U.S. precisely because we have a constitution that does protect rights of conscience. She questioned why we have to fight for things that are already in the constitution. I guess there will always be those who defend the constitution and those who don't. Hence the need for people who believe in it and will fight for it at all times and places.

  • Ernest T. Bass Bountiful, UT
    Aug. 10, 2013 9:46 a.m.

    For starters nobody ever said religions would have to perform same-sex marriage. SSM is all about the same rights as traditional marriage.
    Second, I will never buy anything from overstock again.

  • Magggie Bountiful, UT
    Aug. 10, 2013 10:18 a.m.

    Should we wait until it is an issue to try to make it a law? Once it's an issue, it becomes much more difficult to fight against. Of course we aren't seeing major problems with it yet, but this law would be a preventative measure to protect the religious rights of the churches. - Just wait until people are suing because they were discriminated against because their church wouldn't perform their marriage for them, or because their ceremony wasn't allowed on their church's property or in their cathedral or church that they had always dreamed of marrying in...etc. - I see that happening very soon if we don't take precautions against it. - If you read some of the previous comments, you will see that there are already those who think church's have no right to deny performing that ceremony.

  • PTM ,
    Aug. 10, 2013 10:25 a.m.

    If the LDS Church can't be forced to marry inter-faith heterosexual couples in one of their Temples or if any religion can't be forced to ordain women as priests, what makes it possible to force any religion to marry homosexual couples. Even under the guise of equal protection, religions have special privileges that negate equal protection. Or maybe Mr. Johnson is for getting

    'Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof'

  • Moderate Salt Lake City, UT
    Aug. 10, 2013 10:54 a.m.

    If the LGBT community is really going to "pressure churches to perform same-sex marriages", what makes you think that a new law is going to stop them?

  • Clark W. Griswold Sandy, Utah
    Aug. 10, 2013 10:56 a.m.

    Overstock has their constitutional rights (freedom of speech) to further their political agenda. I have the same constitutional rights not to patronize such establishments and I will no longer support Overstock!

  • samhill Salt Lake City, UT
    Aug. 10, 2013 11:06 a.m.

    "...Johnson is crafting a proposed amendment that would prohibit requiring a religious organization to "solemnize, officiate in, or recognize any particular marriage or religious rite of marriage in violation of its beliefs,..."

    ------------

    Ahmmm, as pointed out previously in other comments, it seems this is already covered by the 1st Amendment.

    I must admit I am worried about the tendency of some Supreme Court justices to consider the Constitution as something they can interpret to suit their own agenda as they either play loose and dishonestly with the language and/or intent to try and amend it in ways not allowed. So, perhaps Mr. Johnson is worried enforcement of the 1st Amendment may be sufficiently distorted as to effectively disappear.

    If that is the case then I guess I share that concern. But, I think the chances are very remote.

    I also think that crafting an amendment to the Utah constitution in an attempt to safeguard a provision in the U.S. constitution would be woefully inadequate. After all, if a Supreme Court can nullify the 1st Amendment, how difficult would it be to overrule one in Utah?

  • Contrariuser mid-state, TN
    Aug. 10, 2013 11:39 a.m.

    @Mainly Me --

    You said: "The same thing was claimed in England and now there is a suit in the British courts"

    As has already been pointed out, this is because the Church of England is -- guess what -- the STATE church of England.

    Now aren't you glad we have separation of church and state?

    @very concerned --

    You said: "And lest you claim that gay rights are just like the civil rights of 1964, I disagree. "

    Coretta Scott King: "I still hear people say that I should not be talking about the rights of lesbian and gay people and I should stick to the issue of racial justice," she said. "But I hasten to remind them that Martin Luther King Jr. said, 'Injustice anywhere is a threat to justice everywhere.'" "I appeal to everyone who believes in Martin Luther King Jr.'s dream to make room at the table of brother- and sisterhood for lesbian and gay people..."

    The Rev. Al Sharpton: "I believe in equal human rights, before the law, for all human beings, and race, gender, disability, class or sexual orientation should not be a factor under the law. "

  • merich39 Salt Lake City, UT
    Aug. 10, 2013 11:53 a.m.

    There are two separate issues here: the first is should religions and their houses of worship be required to recognize and accept homosexual marriages. My opinion is absolutely not. Religions should not be forced by law to "solemnize that which they find objectionable" within their houses of worship nor by their clergy within their duties as clergymen. However, the second issue is should businesses owned by religious individuals or religious organizations be allowed to circumvent anti-discrimination laws on the basis that they find homosexual marriage objectionable. My opinion again is absolutely not! Religions and the religious should not be allowed to discriminate in their government sanctioned business operations. If we allow discrimination based on sexual orientation, then where do we draw this "allowable discrimination" line? Do we allow businesses to discriminate against Italians, women, the poor, etc based on the business owners religious beliefs? Allowing businesses to discriminate based on religious beliefs is a door we do not want to open.

  • Dominique* SLC, UT
    Aug. 10, 2013 12:03 p.m.

    This is the most insipid bollocks ever. No marriage equality measure has EVER required ANY religion to perform ANY marriage.

    Stop forcing your religion on everyone else. Ever wonder why more people are leaving Mormonism than their army of missionaries can recruit? THIS IS WHY!!!

    I've boycotted Overstock for years because of their ridiculous politics. This is just one more reason to not do business with them.

  • RDJntx Austin, TX
    Aug. 10, 2013 12:27 p.m.

    DABAKIS has it right. I have advocated for a very long time that the government needs to get the heck out of the marriage business. marriage has been viewed historically as a religious institution and the government has usurped control. In reality, let the states issue couples both hetero and gay a certificat of civil union. which grants all LEGAL rights currently obtained by marriage. With that civil union certificate the LGBT community gets the government sanctioned recogniciton they want / deserve.

    Then let the religions practice the concept of marriage according to the tennants of their own faith. if a gay couple cannot get married in their church let them find one where they can and get married there.

  • Counter Intelligence Salt Lake City, UT
    Aug. 10, 2013 1:07 p.m.

    "No sane person that I know of wants to coerce or force any religion to perform any ceremony that they are not comfortable with."

    Since when are politics sane?

    Why do DN moderators clearly censor by content rather than "civility" (and why are the top comments a regurgitation of anti religion sentiment, when there are more rational and balanced posts?)

  • Counter Intelligence Salt Lake City, UT
    Aug. 10, 2013 1:21 p.m.

    @Contrariuser

    Quoting the Rev. Al Sharpton does not really help your cause.

    Is equating skin pigment with sex organs really "sane" or merely an example of the insanity of popular culture - and an example of why the proposed law has value?

    Overstock has my business from now on. - it takes a brave man to confront politically correct insanity

    Ironically the moderator will censor this post because I used the exact same language as the Democratic chair did in his quote - which is apparently not "civil" when reflected back

  • Truthseeker SLO, CA
    Aug. 10, 2013 1:56 p.m.

    Gay marriage and the Church of England:

    "On July 17, the U.K.’s same-sex “marriage” bill became law, meaning that, beginning next year, same-sex couples — who can already obtain civil unions — can become married in England and Wales, though not in Scotland or Northern Ireland.
    The legislation allows churches and other religious groups to conduct wedding ceremonies for same-sex couples at the church’s discretion, though the U.K.’s established church, the Church of England, is barred from doing so."

  • PhotoSponge nampa, ID
    Aug. 10, 2013 2:45 p.m.

    I say, "Go for it!"

  • Contrarius mid-state, TN
    Aug. 10, 2013 3:04 p.m.

    @Counter Intelligence --

    "Quoting the Rev. Al Sharpton does not really help your cause."

    Ehh. I was merely showing that leaders in racial equality do see the parallel with gay rights. Doesn't really matter whether you like the guy or not.

    "Is equating skin pigment with sex organs really "sane" or merely an example of the insanity of popular culture"

    Civil rights applies for groups that are defined by many different criteria. Equal rights for women is certainly defined by sex organs. Equal rights for members of minority religions is defined by belief. Equal rights for the handicapped is defined by physical or mental injury. Why should it matter what the defining criterion is? They are all joined by their battles against discrimination.

    "Overstock has my business from now on. - it takes a brave man to confront politically correct insanity"

    That amendment is a stupid idea. Churches are already protected from having to perform gay marriages if they don't want to. Proposing a constitutional amendment is just political theater.

    And remember, many churches are already happy to perform gay marriages anyway.

    "Ironically the moderator will censor this post"

    Guess again. ;-)

  • New Yorker Pleasant Grove, UT
    Aug. 10, 2013 3:34 p.m.

    How does one create an amendment that cannot be turned on its head? The article says:

    "A proposed amendment that would prohibit requiring a religious organization to 'solemnize, officiate in, or recognize any particular marriage or religious rite of marriage in violation of its beliefs.'"

    Muslims and others in other countries practice polygamy. If we cannot force them to solemnize same-sex marriages, how can we stop them (after such an amendment) from marrying a man to four wives?

  • ulvegaard Medical Lake, Washington
    Aug. 10, 2013 3:35 p.m.

    There are many who will argue that such a law would not be necessary. But this issue is already surfacing in other parts of the world. I suspect quite strongly that one of the agendas has always been to force all religions to accept gay marriage regardless of their various doctrines. Society, by and large, is accepting gay marriage. The major hold out seem to be some religions which consider same sex marriage and homosexuality in general, to be a sin. It therefore becomes essential that religions be forced to accept the life style.

    I think this is a very important piece of legislation. I think it will become quite telling how many people rise up to object to this as being unfair. How dare anyone have their own opinions, standards and beliefs.

  • Lightbearer Brigham City, UT
    Aug. 10, 2013 4:35 p.m.

    Even religious leaders have said that marriage is a secular institution and that religion should stay out of it.

    Martin Luther, for example:

    "No one can deny that marriage is an external, worldy thing, like clothing and food, house and property, subject to worldly authority, as the numerous imperial laws that have been enacted on the matter prove" ("On Marriage Matters").

    "Therefore, because marriage and wedlock are a worldly business, it does not behoove us pastors or servants of the church that we should establish or govern anything of them, but we should leave it to every city and land to act in this according to their own custom and tradition" ("A Marriage Booklet for the Simple Curate").

    John Calvin said, "[Marriage] is a good and holy ordinance of God. And agriculture, architecture, shoemaking, and shaving, are lawful ordinances of God; but they are not sacraments. For in a sacrament, the thing required is not only that it be a work of God, but that it be an external ceremony appointed by God to confirm a promise. That there is nothing of the kind in marriage, even children can judge" ("Institutes of the Christian Religion", IV, XIX).

  • Zaruski SLC, UT
    Aug. 10, 2013 5:51 p.m.

    This argument was the key in the LDS church's campaign on CA prop 8: that it would cause churches to be forced to perform gay marriages which is a shameless lie.

    If a State allows clergy to officiate marriages, then the clergy is now acting on behalf of the State and therefore should not be allowed to discriminate. This would be akin contracting out a public service, like say, the DMV, to a private company which would then turn around and refuse to issue driving licenses, to oh, I don't know, Asians?

    The government can't discriminate. And any private citizen vested with the authority to carry out a public service is not allowed to discriminate either.

    Having said that...are churches allowed to issue marriage licenses? Or are people required to show up at a town hall or whatever to get those? Because if they are...then tough. You have to perform gay weddings too, or have that authority stripped from you.

  • Eliyahu Pleasant Grove, UT
    Aug. 10, 2013 6:11 p.m.

    Another solution in search of a problem.

  • dLange Los Gatos, CA
    Aug. 10, 2013 7:21 p.m.

    This is pointless. We already have the !st ammendment to the US Constitution granting freedom of religion.

  • MIMom Mt Pleasant, MI
    Aug. 10, 2013 8:44 p.m.

    Sad, yet another company knocked off my 'shopping from' list.

  • MrTuscadero Houston, TX
    Aug. 11, 2013 5:41 a.m.

    This is really a non-story. The consequences of the Civil War have finally come to full fruition. The 50 states are merely provinces, and cannot do anything that the federal government does not apporve of. Any amendment to the Utah constitution that offends anyone with enough money and power at the federal level will result in the Supreme Court rejeting the amendment itself.

    In short, no governing body in the U.S. actually has an effective constitution any more. There is only the federal one, and it has very nearly cesed to exist, since anyone unhappy with unsonstitutional acts of the federal government needs hundreds of millions of dollars ot sue for redress. File the state constituion next to the bylass and deed restrictions of your local subdivision.

  • luvbug WEST VALLEY CITY, UT
    Aug. 11, 2013 10:04 p.m.

    I would support this proposition. Go Jonathan Johnson ! Even though churches aren't compelled to marry "everyone" , I can see a lawsuit coming our way sooner than later. I believe Jonathan is just trying to be proactive on the issue before it comes to that.

  • RanchHand Huntsville, UT
    Aug. 12, 2013 7:41 a.m.

    very concerned wsays;
    Here is the final word on religious rights (or what SHOULD be the final words). "Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; . . . " (First Amendment).

    -- Thank you. My religious beliefs say that same-sex marraiges are perfectly fine. Do you support my religious rignts too? Or just your own? BTW, have you ever tried to change your own sexual orientation? It isn't something you choose.

    "Religious liberty advocates also point to instances of private businesses being penalized by the state and the courts for not accommodating same-sex couples because it would violate the owners' religious beliefs."

    --- What would you say if these business owners refused to service Mormons because they believe Mormons are a cult?

    @ulvegaard;

    How dare anyone want to be treated equally to every other American. It's so unseemly.

  • Chempianos Cottonwood Heights, UT
    Aug. 12, 2013 9:31 a.m.

    Nothing in any proposed law would FORCE any religious group to marry gays in its own religious ceremony. This is a solution to a problem that doesn't exist. Why bother?

  • Redshirt1701 Deep Space 9, Ut
    Aug. 12, 2013 12:37 p.m.

    To "kolob1" you are wrong. According to Gallup polling conservatives make up 42% of the population to liberalism's 21%, the remaining are undecided or moderates.

    To "JeffreyRO555" divorce is allowed in the bible, and there are specific reasons for divorce.

    You have some hatred of religion, which shows in your attack on established religions wanting to have their point of view taught in schools to counteract the Secular Humanist views that your ilk are pushing.

    To "RanchHand" the Constitution also says that the government can't just search your belongings without a warrant, yet we now have a NSA center collecting all of our digital data. The constitution also says that if it isn't specifically mentioned in the constitution it is not allowed by the Federal Government, that means SS, Medicare, the ACA, and so many other programs are not legal. If you believe in the constitution, you either believe in all of it, or none of it.

    This isn't equal treatment. This now sets a precedent of redefining marriage is about who you love, nothing more. You can no longer deny polygamy, as long as it includes multiple adults who love eachother.

  • Canyontreker TAYLORSVILLE, UT
    Aug. 12, 2013 12:57 p.m.

    "Dabakis would want to propose the possibility of dividing marriage into a civil ceremony for all couples, and, if they choose, a separate religious rite performed in a house of worship."

    Double duty the government. Make it bigger. Hire civil people to marry everyone. We have unlimited resources...just expand the government some more! If we run out of money we'll just charge everyone to get married. LOL

  • Contrarius mid-state, TN
    Aug. 12, 2013 1:01 p.m.

    @Red --

    "You can no longer deny polygamy..."

    Here we go again.

    Of course you can still deny polygamy.

    1. Roughly 15 countries already have gay marriage -- and NONE of them have legalized polygamy.

    2. Canada recently reaffirmed their polygamy ban -- even though they've had gay marriage for 10 years.

    3. Multiple court decisions in the US have already reaffirmed the distinction between gay rights and both polygamy and incest.

    4. It's also very useful to note that the countries which do have polygamy are generally **opposed** to both gay rights and equal rights for women. In fact, concepts of civil rights are pretty much antithetical to the practice of polygamy. So if you oppose polygamy, you should actually SUPPORT civil rights for all. ;-)

    5. The essential difference between polygamy and gay marriage lies with the harm principle. Governments have a legal interest in preventing polygamy because polygamy conveys a significantly increased risk of harm to women and children. In contrast, gay marriage does not.

    In order to be legalized, groups must show BOTH that legalization would protect their equal rights AND that legalization would not increase the risk of harm to others. Polygamy fails that test.

  • Redshirt1701 Deep Space 9, Ut
    Aug. 12, 2013 2:22 p.m.

    To "Contrarius" why do you want to go there again. Last we did this, you ended up conceeding that just because people oppose it now that eventually it could be accepted, just like interracial marriages or gay marriage.

    You still have yet to prove that when groups enter into polygamy voluntarily, and are not part of a religious group that has teachings that are harmful, that polygamy is the harming agent and not the religious teachings. So far the only studies that are ever published have looked at polygimist groups that have assigned marriages.

    If you want to go into the whole harmful thing, then you will have to again conceed that gay marriage should be banned because there is more violence involved gay relationships than in hetersexual relationships.

    Why do you not want to be fair to people that happen to love more than one woman and women that want sister-wives? Why are you bigoted towards polyamorous relationships?

  • Contrarius mid-state, TN
    Aug. 12, 2013 3:20 p.m.

    @Redshirt1701 --

    "...you ended up conceeding..."

    Baloney, Red. I still have most of those posts -- and as you very well know, I said no such thing.

    "You still have yet to prove...."

    Fortunately, I don't need to prove any such thing.

    As Judge Baumann stated in the Canadian case:

    -- "The prevention of [the] collective harms associated with polygamy to women and children, especially, is clearly an objective that is pressing and substantial,"
    -- "Polygamy's harm to society includes the critical fact that a great many of its individual harms are not specific to any particular religious, cultural or regional context. They can be generalized and expected to occur wherever polygamy exists."

    ".then you will have to again conceed that gay marriage should be banned because there is more violence involved gay relationships than in hetersexual relationships."

    As I've already shown you -- more than once -- it is NOT true that there is more violence involved in gay relationships. In fact, even the papers YOU cited actually state that violence is roughly the SAME in both types of relationships.

    Keep trying, Red. Try for more facts, less fiction.

  • Redshirt1701 Deep Space 9, Ut
    Aug. 12, 2013 4:25 p.m.

    To "Contrarius" prove that polygamous relationships are harmful, without using a study that involves the Warren Jeffs style religion. Just because a judge thinks it is harmful does not mean that it is. His analysis of polygamy was based on the religious sect, not on polygamous relationships outside of that group. Read "Parsing polygamy with the ‘Sister Wives’ family on one side and anti-polygamists on the other" in LV Weekly.

    Again, if harm was a legitimate reason, then the government should also ban no fault divorce because it not only harms families, but also is bad for the environment (2 houses instead of 1, etc...)

    If polygamy is the bad thing, show me the studies (not a judge's opinion) where it is bad, and is not the religion that is harmful.

    As for the violence, according to UCLA, gay relationships are more violent. See "Lesbians More Prone to Partner Violence Than Gay Men" They find that 28% of gay relationships experience violence, compared to 17% of hetersexual relationships.

    Again, where are your studies showing that polygamy is bad? So far all you have are bigoted opinions by uninformed people.

  • A Scientist Provo, UT
    Aug. 13, 2013 6:54 a.m.

    Redshirt continues to drag out the red herring.

    Polygamy is irrelevant to same sex marriage, and has nothing to do with this article.

  • mark Salt Lake City, UT
    Aug. 13, 2013 10:39 a.m.

    "They find that 28% of gay relationships experience violence, compared to 17% of hetersexual relationships."

    So RedShirt, it would seem, is arguing against all forms of marriage. If his argument is that something should not be allowed because it is harmful to others then what is the difference between 17% and 28%? Why the random distinction? Both groups harm others. Where was the line drawn? 18% 20% 25%? And why? It is allowable to harm 17% of people but not 28%? Seems arbitrary. And I am sure that if the numbers were reversed RedShirt would not be calling for an end of heterosexual marriage.

    On polygomy, it has rather surprised me that Mormons are so bitterly opposed to its legalization, after all, if it was legal Mormons could practice their religion as it was meant to be. And if polygomy is so destructive then why did Mormon church leaders claim it was God's plan? Why would God gave been so off on what he wanted his people to practice?

  • Contrariuser mid-state, TN
    Aug. 13, 2013 1:03 p.m.

    @Redshirt1701 --

    "As for the violence, according to UCLA, gay relationships are more violent...."

    Red, I do wish you would learn to READ the studies you cite.

    The "study", actually titled "California Health Interview Survey", included "physical or sexual violence at the hands of an intimate partner, including spouses, companions or casual friends." As I've explained to you previously, this large group of people often includes previous STRAIGHT relationships -- both sexual and non.

    Gay and lesbian people often do try to "go straight" at first, and these straight relationships may very well become violent. As one large Canadian Social Survey stipulates: "The reader is cautioned that it is not known whether gays, lesbians or bisexuals who were victims of spousal abuse were in a same-sex or a heterosexual relationship at the time of the abuse."

    And another essential point: All of these studies are talking about LGBT NON-formalized relationships, NOT marriages.

    In order to have any relevance for gay **marriage**, you'd actually have to prove that the violence increased AFTER MARRIAGE.

    Your supposed data doesn't even prove that UNmarried LGBT relationships are more violent -- and it says absolutely **nothing** about married ones.

  • Contrariuser mid-state, TN
    Aug. 13, 2013 1:10 p.m.

    @Redshirt1701 --

    "prove that polygamous relationships are harmful"

    Hey, I only get 200 words!

    There is WAY too much data on polygamy to cover, but here's just a few good resources for you:

    1. UN Report of the Human Rights Committee (HRC) 2007-2008 -- polygamy is "a practice which is an affront to women’s dignity and is incompatible with the Covenant" and "highly detrimental to women's rights"
    2. UN International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights (ICCPR) -- "Polygamy violates the dignity of women. It is an inadmissible discrimination against women. Consequently, it should be definitely abolished wherever it continues to exist."
    3. Polygamy in Canada: Legal and Social Implications for Women and Children -- this one is a 280 page tome with tons of details and references for you to peruse, available free on the net.
    4. Polygyny as a Violation of Human Rights Law -- part of a research report by the Canadian Department of Justice -- this one also has a lot of references for you.
    5. A Comparison of Family Functioning, Life and Marital Satisfaction, and Mental Health of Women in Polygamous and Monogamous Marriages -- one research study out of many

    Thse should get you started!

  • Redshirt1701 Deep Space 9, Ut
    Aug. 13, 2013 3:35 p.m.

    To "A Scientist" polygamy has a lot to do with gay marriage. If you can redefine marriage for gays, why is it wrong to redefine it for polygamists?

    To "mark" don't ask me, I am not bitterly opposed to polygamy. I don't think I would want to practice it, but as often happens, it is the first wife that tells the husband it is time for another wife.

    To "Contrariuser" those are nice reports that are based on opinion, eurocentric biases, or have to do with the religion and culture of the region and not polygamy itself. For example, one of the documents has to do with violence against women in Algeria. Another case dealt with arranged marriages. That is a muslim country where it doesn't matter if they have 1 or 10 wives, it is the religion that perpetuates the violence. All of the studies out there use groups that view women as little more than cattle. Again, where is the study that shows that polygamy is bad? Everything you have presented uses groups that historically are violent towards women. It is like saying everybody in the US has dogs when studying people at a dog show.

  • Contrariuser mid-state, TN
    Aug. 13, 2013 4:47 p.m.

    @Redshirt1701 --

    "those are nice reports that are based on opinion, eurocentric biases, or have to do with the religion and culture of the region and not polygamy itself."

    Oh, Red, that's not even a good *attempt* at a rebuttal.

    The first two sources are United Nations human rights documents. They represent the legal conclusions of the UN Human Rights Committee and the **International** Covenant on Civil and Political Rights(notice those words, UNITED Nations and INTERNATIONAL Covenant). These are not mere "opinions" or "Eurocentric biases", and they do not just refer to one religion or one culture. In fact, as of January 2013, more than *150* countries have signed on to that Covenant.

    The second two were written in Canada. So what? As I already mentioned, they have many many details and references between them, covering cases and data from many different countries -- including the US.

    And the fifth was, as I mentioned, a single (and well-known) research study. There are many more out there -- but, of course, I only get 200 words per post.

    Try actually READING those Canadian documents. THEN get back to me about supposed "biases" or supposed "religious" or "cultural" limitations.

  • RedShirt USS Enterprise, UT
    Aug. 14, 2013 7:22 a.m.

    To "Contrariuser" did you even read those UN reports that you quoted. They either looked at muslim dominated nations or looked at polygamy in muslim families practicing polygamy in Canada. You still have the common factor of muslim polygamists. Muslims are not known for treating their women and children very well, so if you rely only on studies on polygamy involving muslims, you will get a heavy bias towards harm and dissatisfaction.

    From "A Comparison of Family Functioning, Life and Marital Satisfaction, and Mental Health of Women in Polygamous and Monogamous Marriages" we see that their their entire sample included "A sample of 352 Bedouin-Arab women participated in this study: 235 (67%) were in a monogamous marriage and 117 (33%) were in a polygamous marriage." again, using muslim women who typically are mistreated.

    All of the studies that you have found are like going to a battered women's shelter and doing a survey on marriage satisfaction. You are not going to find many happy people there.

    Try again. See if any of the anti-polygamy studies include people like the family on Sister Wives.

    Keep looking to find that study that doesn't include cultures that mistreat women.

  • Happy Valley Heretic Orem, UT
    Aug. 14, 2013 8:59 a.m.

    Redshirt1701 "polygamy has a lot to do with gay marriage. If you can redefine marriage for gays, why is it wrong to redefine it for polygamists?

    Is it really redefining it, or just bringing it back, since we already had polygamy and I'm pretty sure they called it marriage back then, and I'm pretty sure they still do in small conservative religious communities across the west.

    But your whole argument is just a distraction from the actual story.

    How many black folks or mixed race couples was the LDS church forced to perform during those year when there was that misunderstanding about doctrine vs tradition?

  • Contrariuserer mid-state, TN
    Aug. 14, 2013 1:23 p.m.

    @RedShirt --

    "did you even read those UN reports"

    The International Covenant isn't a "report". As I've already explained to you, it's actually an international treaty that has been signed by more than **150** countries worldwide.

    "They either looked at muslim dominated nations or looked at polygamy in muslim families practicing polygamy in Canada."

    No, Red. Again, you obviously still haven't *read* those documents. Try again.

    "their entire sample included "A sample of 352 Bedouin-Arab women participated in this study: 235 (67%) were in a monogamous marriage and 117 (33%) were in a polygamous marriage...."

    Yes! Notice: they compared polygamous **and** monogamous families **in the same culture and religion**. This is what we call a "controlled" study -- meaning that the researchers **controlled** for the effects of religion and culture. That means that any differences they found were solely due to **polygamy itself**.

    Many other studies on polygamy have been conducted in the same way -- to **eliminate** the effects of religion and culture in their analyses.

    Please, Red -- **read** those documents before you pretend to know what's in them. And while you're at it, look up definitions for controlled studies -- since that concept is obviously confusing you.

  • RedShirt USS Enterprise, UT
    Aug. 14, 2013 4:12 p.m.

    To "Contrariuserer" I did read them. Everythign you have referenced from the UN was based on looking at muslim women. Again, you are going to a women's shelter trying to find happily married women.

    Come back when you have a report or study where they looked at something other than muslim women or women in cultures of abuse.

  • Joggle Somewhere In, HI
    Aug. 14, 2013 8:01 p.m.

    When I got married in Utah I had a civil marriage at the court house to make our commitment legal. We are non-believers...atheists in that we don't believe in any gods! God was put into what should have been a civil or secular ceremony. I guess I'm not really married after all! Utah (and all states) need to exclude God from its civil ceremony because government is not a church. If a person wants a religious ceremony...get your civil license and get married however you want....but no government official performing marriage should be able to perform a religious ceremony. There is little separation of Church and State in Utah. That judge had no right to assume we believed in God and our ceremony should have been a secular worded ceremony. Religion needs to stay out of supposedly secular government.

  • Contrariusiest mid-state, TN
    Aug. 15, 2013 8:53 a.m.

    @Red --

    "I did read them."

    If you had actually read them, you would already realize that the Canadian documents actually include studies, data, and/or legal cases about polygamy from more than 50 different countries (I stopped counting at 50), encompassing several different religions (including Islam, Hinduism, Christianity, tribal religions, and others) -- and obviously many different cultures as well.

    Additionally, if you had actually looked up the definition of "controlled studies", you would also already understand how researchers control for the effects of religion and culture when studying polygamy within a single country. You would be wise to look this concept up before you post again -- it's a fundamental concept throughout the world of scientific research.

    As for the UN Covenant -- more than 150 countries have already signed onto this treaty, which declares fundamental human rights principles that are to be accepted **worldwide**.

    But hey -- if you want to declare that all these studies and all those countries are wrong just because you say they are, you go right ahead and do that. Just don't expect anyone to take you seriously.

  • RedShirt USS Enterprise, UT
    Aug. 15, 2013 12:16 p.m.

    To "Contrariusiest" the "studies" are not really controlled, nor do they discount the effects of religion.

    Maybe you should read those studies more carefully next time. The Canadian studies that look at polygamous marriages, only look at legal issues outside of the muslim religion. The closest they come to any actual study of group that has a love based polygamy is they say there could be problems, but never bother to actually see if there are any problems. Again, the focus of the research is in communities where women are treated poorly.

    I am still waiting for a non-biased study where they look at women and children from a culture where violence and abuse of women and children is not the norm.

    Keep on trying. So far we have learned that marriages in muslim families are abusive, and the same can be said for Fundamentalist Mormon groups. However, even when you remove the plural marriage, those groups are still in abusive marriages.

  • Contrariusiest mid-state, TN
    Aug. 15, 2013 1:02 p.m.

    @RedShirt --

    "the "studies" are not really controlled, nor do they discount the effects of religion."

    Refer back to my earlier post. If you want to declare that all these studies and all those countries are wrong just because you say they are, you go right ahead and do that. Just don't expect anyone to take you seriously. The facts are very different than your claims.

    Tell us, Red -- exactly HOW are those studies "not really controlled"? Please be specific.

    "The Canadian studies that look at polygamous marriages, only look at legal issues outside of the muslim religion."

    Wrong again. As I earlier stated, those documents (they aren't "Canadian studies", Red, they are reviews of the international literature and reports on it) include studies, data, and legal cases from many different religions.

    "love based polygamy"

    Whatintheheck is "love based polygamy"?

    "I am still waiting for a non-biased study where they look at women and children from a culture where violence and abuse of women and children is not the norm."

    Polygamy very rarely, if ever, even *exists* in "cultures where violence and abuse of women and children is not the norm". That should tell you something.

  • RedShirt USS Enterprise, UT
    Aug. 15, 2013 2:40 p.m.

    To "Contrariusiest" the studies are "controlled" because they control what groups they are studying. The groups that they study can only result in a biased conclusion based on their pre-conceived ideas.

    Again, you are going to a battered women's shelter looking for happily married women. I don't think that you will find many of them there.

    Here is how you know that they are biased against polygamy. In the Canadian study they mention that there are groups of polygamists that marry out of love. The fact that they don't bother to go into those communities.

    What you should be asking is why didn't the Canadians or the UN study the groups of polygamists that get married out of love instead of for religious reasons.

    Are you going to find the research that looks at polygamy outside of cultures that are harmful to women and children, or are you going to hold onto a biased study?

  • Contrariusiest mid-state, TN
    Aug. 15, 2013 3:17 p.m.

    @RedShirt --

    "the studies are "controlled" because they control what groups they are studying. The groups that they study can only result in a biased conclusion based on their pre-conceived ideas."

    Back to school for you, Red. That is NOT what "controlled study" means -- and that is NOT the result one obtains from conducting a controlled study.

    Keep trying, Red.

    I can't post links for you, but just google "controlled studies" and "case-control studies" and you'll find tons of educational links to lift you out of your ignorance.

    Then maybe you can actually answer the question. Exactly how are these studies "not really controlled"? Please be specific.

    "Are you going to find the research that looks at polygamy outside of cultures that are harmful to women and children, or are you going to hold onto a biased study?"

    You are the only one who thinks of these as "biased" studies, Red.

    If you want to declare that all these studies and all those countries are wrong just because you say they are, you go right ahead and do that. Just don't expect anyone to take you seriously.

    The facts are very different than your claims.

  • RedShirtMIT Cambridge, MA
    Aug. 15, 2013 3:39 p.m.

    To "Contrariusiest" anybody who thinks that studying only groups that are violent towards women and children will result in finding positive aspects about marriage, polygamous or otherwise is seriously lacking in scientific understanding.

    I dare you to find a study that looks at a polygamous group that is not violent towards women and children. All your studies have given us is examples of how violent cultures are violent regardless of how many wives a man has.

    These studies that you hold so dearly all remind me of the studies that Tobacco industry doctors did to find any link between smoking and cancer. The studies they did were "controlled" just like the ones you keep quoting, yet were they right?

  • Contrariusiest mid-state, TN
    Aug. 15, 2013 4:17 p.m.

    @RedShirtMIT --

    "anybody who thinks that studying only groups that are violent towards women and children will result in finding positive aspects about marriage, polygamous or otherwise is seriously lacking in scientific understanding."

    Red, you obviously still don't understand what controlled studies do. Please educate yourself.

  • RedShirtMIT Cambridge, MA
    Aug. 15, 2013 4:25 p.m.

    To "Contrariusiest" you still fail to recognize the simple fact that while they claim to have a controlled study, it is simply a biased study using groups of people that had the highest possibility of giving them the results they desired.

    A controlled study only means that there was a control group for comparison, it does not account for factors that will result in a bias.

    Again, you have study done in a women's shelter filled with battered women, and are seeking to find women that are happily married. You could have a controlled study, but the result is still biased.

    Please explain why you trust a study that was so heavily biased?

  • Contrariusier mid-state, TN
    Aug. 16, 2013 8:32 a.m.

    @RedShirtMIT --

    "it is simply a biased study..."

    Nope. You still don't understand the concept of controls.

    I'll explain again.

    In controlled studies, you pick two sets of people who are as alike as possible. If you're studying issues like polygamy, then they should have the same culture, religion, and so on. They should live in the same places and mingle together in society if possible. All the people should be alike, EXCEPT for the single characteristic you want to study -- in our case, polygamy vs. monogamy.

    Once you have your two sets, then you compare them and look at the effects of that one defining difference. Since they all have the same culture and religion, you can NOT blame the effects you find on culture or religion -- they all have the same. If your polygamous group has more abuse than the monogamous group, you know that it is due to the difference in marriage -- because there are no other defining differences. You have *controlled* (eliminated) other differences.

    Again: how are these studies "not really controlled"? Please be specific.

    And another question: exactly what factors do you think are resulting in bias in these studies? Please be specific.

  • RedShirtMIT Cambridge, MA
    Aug. 19, 2013 8:04 a.m.

    To "Contrariusier" you have failed to explain how the study is not biased.

    You are wrong in your assesment for controlled studies. For a controlled study you have one group that has the attribute that you want to look at, and a second control group that does not have that attribute.

    The studies that you quoted were looking for problems in polygamous marriages, and only looked at groups where the religion ix violent towards women. They then attributed the problems that the religion causes to marriages to polygamy.

    You may not like it, but that is what those studies have done. IF they wanted to take an honest look, they would look at polygamy in groups that marry for love, not because it was arranged that way.