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Former Archbishop goes a bit over the top


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#61 Northern Sol

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Posted 15 October 2012 - 07:11 PM

Man and Woman actually describes something that is different. A marriage can just as easily be defined as a marriage between two people. There is no need for an extra descriptor. A Muslim marriage and Christian marriage are very different but we still call them 'marriage,' we don't force one of them to change their title.


We didn't force "gay marriages" to change their title, it is a title that it never had. You are saying that we should change the definition of marriage but without any particular justification for this.

Once again, I refer you to the weight of response from the Christian side. Do you seriously think it is proportionate for an argument over semantics? You cannot easily separate the sin from the sinner and it inevitably leads to homophobia. The Anglican church is almost ready to split over homosexuality, meaning that it is a very big issue to them. It is clear that the problem isn't with marriage but with homosexuality.


"The Anglican church" isn't the same thing as "the Church of England". If it's ready to split, it is because of the Church in Africa where they tend to take a rather different view of homosexuality. One that is unpopular in England and unpopular even with those against gay marriage.

As for "hate the sin, love the sinner"; I think you'll find it is quite easy. Many atheists (including me) hate religion but I don't know about you but I don't hate religious people (except the nutjobs).

#62 Northern Sol

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Posted 15 October 2012 - 07:12 PM

I'd love to know what peoples' opinions are on the changing of the name 'Rugby' in France. Surely as a different sport from Rugby Union, we needed a different descriptor and shouldn't have been allowed to use Rugby, otherwise we were redefining what Rugby is.

Doesn't this in essence make the Unionists right in not allowing us to have their name? I'm sure their intentions were innocent enough...


The Northern Union never stopped playing rugby. They didn't just invent a new sport and copy the name from elsewhere.

And in any case the point you are deliberately overlooking is that gays are allowed to use the word "marriage" or "wedding" as much as they like - the debate is entirely about which word the state uses.

Edited by Northern Sol, 15 October 2012 - 07:17 PM.


#63 Northern Sol

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Posted 15 October 2012 - 07:17 PM

It's easier to change a word than to shoot lots of people.

Less tidying up.


It's even easier to change nothing and continue as we are.

#64 Maximus Decimus

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Posted 15 October 2012 - 08:16 PM

Except it isn't just semantics.

You've handed me a useful analogy in your later post about rugby. Lots of rugby league supporters get het up - some to the point of risking their blood pressure - about the way in which rugby union has in recent years coopted the word 'rugby' to describe itself rather than use the term 'rugby union'. It has worked, too, as a glance at any media outlet will confirm. Yet rugby union is the original rugby and so they have a more convincing call on it than we league supporters do. So it is with the term marriage. Because the Christian Church - in this country - formalised marriage, the supporters of the church believe they have a greater call on it than the state. Therefore, many supporters of the church get het up - some to the point of risking their blood pressure - about the way in which the state has in recent years coopted the word 'marriage' to describe its own version of the relationship rather than use terms such as 'civil union' (no-faith version). Marriage in this country was originally, in the Middle Ages, a religious commitment as well as a financial and human physical, social and emotional one (in fact the emotional sometimes played no part at all in it). ONLY the church conducted and promoted marriage at that point in history. The state did not. To those of the Christian faith who care, meddling with those elements of marriage mentioned above - and one of those elements includes the prerequisite that it is a man and woman who marry - is sacrilege. Because faith is more central to a person's life than rugby, my analogy slightly breaks down here! But I think you will get the point. This isn't simply a question of semantics. It is a question of meaning, of belief, of tradition, of origins and identity. In short, much, much more than semantics. In much the same way as your surname may be or that a person identifies as English or that your home is an expression of yourself.


The analogy with rugby fails miserably, because we try hard to identify as rugby in opposition to rugby union, it is much more akin to the homosexual position. Some of us are annoyed by the continued attempts to pretend we don't exist and associate the word rugby singularly with rugby union. The French weren't even allowed to call their sport 'rugby' for a long time but in reality you are arguing for the position that says that they should have just been happy being called 'game of 13.' After all it was a different sport. I'm sure it peed many Union fans off that their original version of rugby was being hijacked by Rugby League. They had all the history on their side. It is ridiculous to claim that they should hold some authority over the term rugby.

The historical argument completely fails because you have again ignored the fact that many cultures prior to Christianity in the middle ages practiced monogamous marriage, some in this country. In the same way that times changed to allow Christians to dominate marriage, times have again changed to the point where they don't. They don't have a monopoly on what the term should mean in the future just because they did for an amount of time.

It still doesn't explain the level of outrage. You yourself have said that civil-partnerships are essentially the same so it is just an argument of semantics; it will make no practical difference. Your argument over identity also doesn't tally with the calls from the Church suggesting that it will have huge and grave consequences. If civil-partnerships are the same, then it is just a word. Either they think that it is actually quite different from marriage or they really are creating a storm over a teacup.

Edited by Maximus Decimus, 15 October 2012 - 08:42 PM.


#65 gingerjon

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Posted 15 October 2012 - 08:29 PM

It's even easier to change nothing and continue as we are.


But that creates a level of complication between marriage and civil partnership.

Remove this and the future will be simpler than the present.
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#66 Maximus Decimus

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Posted 15 October 2012 - 08:40 PM

We didn't force "gay marriages" to change their title, it is a title that it never had. You are saying that we should change the definition of marriage but without any particular justification for this.


I never suggested that they were forced to change the name, I'm suggesting that slight differences do not justify a different title. Homosexual marriage and heterosexual marriage would more than accommodate this difference.

The justification is equality. We allow a man and a woman that love each other to marry, we don't allow two men or two women to do the same. Even taking data from a Catholic poll only 12% of homosexuals think marriage should be between just a man and a woman. What is the justification therefore for not allowing them to marry, instead giving them a different term?

"The Anglican church" isn't the same thing as "the Church of England". If it's ready to split, it is because of the Church in Africa where they tend to take a rather different view of homosexuality. One that is unpopular in England and unpopular even with those against gay marriage.

As for "hate the sin, love the sinner"; I think you'll find it is quite easy. Many atheists (including me) hate religion but I don't know about you but I don't hate religious people (except the nutjobs).


I wouldn't even go as far to say I hate religion, I've spent a huge portion of my life and continue to do so around devoutly religious people. I know the good that it does and can do. I spent today stood on a football pitch with a Catholic priest, who is a lovely man. However, I am also acutely aware of the opinions of many of the grassroots followers. In fact, within the last few months I inputted a survey for a parish that covered a variety of issues and some of the opinions would shock you. There is a inherent homophobia within these communities, especially the older generations. I'm not saying it's necessarily a particularly nasty 'we hate gays' homophobia, but they would certainly rather there not be any homosexuals. My father was a good man and a very prominent figure in the parish but I know for a fact he didn't approve of homosexuals even if he tolerated them. He would have been on the front line of this crusade with many of the parishioners that I know all too well. Both of my in-laws are exactly the same and they are the nicest people you would ever meet.

It is the only reason I can think of to understand the weight of the campaign against it. The idea that civil-union is as good as marriage, but then that if they changed the name it would cause the downfall of society just doesn't add up. There has to be something more behind it.

Edited by Maximus Decimus, 15 October 2012 - 08:44 PM.


#67 Maximus Decimus

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Posted 15 October 2012 - 08:41 PM

But that creates a level of complication between marriage and civil partnership.

Remove this and the future will be simpler than the present.


Exactly, rather than a necessary descriptor, homosexual civil-union and heterosexual marriage are more confusing than calling them both marriage.

#68 Northern Sol

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Posted 15 October 2012 - 10:19 PM

But that creates a level of complication between marriage and civil partnership.

Remove this and the future will be simpler than the present.


Or scrap civil partnerships altogether.

Or marriages altogether.

Or better still stop using an insane argument that a simple solution is better than a complex one.

#69 Northern Sol

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Posted 15 October 2012 - 10:20 PM

Exactly, rather than a necessary descriptor, homosexual civil-union and heterosexual marriage are more confusing than calling them both marriage.


Who is confused that we would need to do that?

#70 Northern Sol

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Posted 15 October 2012 - 10:26 PM

I never suggested that they were forced to change the name, I'm suggesting that slight differences do not justify a different title. Homosexual marriage and heterosexual marriage would more than accommodate this difference.

The justification is equality. We allow a man and a woman that love each other to marry, we don't allow two men or two women to do the same. Even taking data from a Catholic poll only 12% of homosexuals think marriage should be between just a man and a woman. What is the justification therefore for not allowing them to marry, instead giving them a different term?


The differences aren't "slight" that's why.

And for someone who are argued that we should adopt a simple solution to then argue that "heterosexual marriage" should replace "marriage".


I wouldn't even go as far to say I hate religion, I've spent a huge portion of my life and continue to do so around devoutly religious people. I know the good that it does and can do. I spent today stood on a football pitch with a Catholic priest, who is a lovely man. However, I am also acutely aware of the opinions of many of the grassroots followers. In fact, within the last few months I inputted a survey for a parish that covered a variety of issues and some of the opinions would shock you. There is a inherent homophobia within these communities, especially the older generations. I'm not saying it's necessarily a particularly nasty 'we hate gays' homophobia, but they would certainly rather there not be any homosexuals. My father was a good man and a very prominent figure in the parish but I know for a fact he didn't approve of homosexuals even if he tolerated them. He would have been on the front line of this crusade with many of the parishioners that I know all too well. Both of my in-laws are exactly the same and they are the nicest people you would ever meet.

It is the only reason I can think of to understand the weight of the campaign against it. The idea that civil-union is as good as marriage, but then that if they changed the name it would cause the downfall of society just doesn't add up. There has to be something more behind it.


I think it's easily explained. They believe that the Sky Pixie created marriage between man and woman and that by allowing man to marry man or woman to marry woman, they would be in violation of God's will.

Merely allowing homosexuals to live without being stoned to death or pestered in any way is not a violation of God's will since the Sky Pixie told them to love thy neighbour and to love the sinner.

#71 Northern Sol

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Posted 15 October 2012 - 10:31 PM

The analogy with rugby fails miserably, because we try hard to identify as rugby in opposition to rugby union, it is much more akin to the homosexual position. Some of us are annoyed by the continued attempts to pretend we don't exist and associate the word rugby singularly with rugby union. The French weren't even allowed to call their sport 'rugby' for a long time but in reality you are arguing for the position that says that they should have just been happy being called 'game of 13.' After all it was a different sport. I'm sure it peed many Union fans off that their original version of rugby was being hijacked by Rugby League. They had all the history on their side. It is ridiculous to claim that they should hold some authority over the term rugby.


The Northern Union did not hijack rugby, they continued to play under the RFU's laws with some variations that were in common use prior to the split. Their / our game is a true descendent of Rugby school's code of football. They had as much right to use the term as the RFU had.

A better analogy would be if something entirely new came along and then not only called itself "rugby" but then insisted that everybody else refer to it as such.

#72 Kenilworth Tiger

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Posted 16 October 2012 - 02:22 PM

I am a woman.



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#73 Maximus Decimus

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Posted 16 October 2012 - 08:16 PM

The differences aren't "slight" that's why.

And for someone who are argued that we should adopt a simple solution to then argue that "heterosexual marriage" should replace "marriage".


This is misrepresenting what I said. I'm not saying that we should always call marriage 'heterosexual marriage.' However, the terms 'heterosexual relationships' and 'homosexual relationships,' are used as a descriptor without feeling the need for a different word for relationship. The differences between the two in this case are also more than slight.

Two people entering into a contract to make a lifelong commitment to each other should, in my opinion, be called a marriage. It depends on your perspective whether you class the gender of the two people as making a huge difference.

I think it's easily explained. They believe that the Sky Pixie created marriage between man and woman and that by allowing man to marry man or woman to marry woman, they would be in violation of God's will.

Merely allowing homosexuals to live without being stoned to death or pestered in any way is not a violation of God's will since the Sky Pixie told them to love thy neighbour and to love the sinner.


Do they honestly believe that God is OK with two men entering a civil-partnership with all the rights of a marriage but he is dead set against this being called a marriage. I never had God down as a pedant.

There are all sorts of aspects of law and society that the religious would class as being against the will of God but few of these issues create as much activism as Gay marriage. Surely there are all sorts of things that Muslims do that they disagree with but allow them to get on with. Praying to a different God for one, surely that really pisses him off. Why are they not willing to let non-Christian homosexuals do as they please as well?

As I have said and from a personal experience of many people against it, I think there is a large degree of homophobia underlying the campaigns. It is clear from the rhetoric of the argument that they see this as a great evil and a grave danger for society. They have completely failed to point out exactly how this will be the case. What is their vision of the future in 40 years time after gay marriage has been legal for that time? Few would say it aloud but I think they are worried about the spread of homosexuality and think that gay marriage signals further acceptance of gays in our society. I think there are some that see this as an 'enough is enough' situation.

They are free in our society to believe what they wish, but it is somewhat ridiculous in this day and age to think that they can affect how an atheist homosexual wishes to live his life in a diverse secular country. Never mind 'hate the sin not the sinner,' a majority of our country don't believe it is a sin anymore. Why should they have to appease the people that believe they are a sinner?

#74 Northern Sol

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Posted 16 October 2012 - 09:36 PM

This is misrepresenting what I said. I'm not saying that we should always call marriage 'heterosexual marriage.' However, the terms 'heterosexual relationships' and 'homosexual relationships,' are used as a descriptor without feeling the need for a different word for relationship. The differences between the two in this case are also more than slight.

Two people entering into a contract to make a lifelong commitment to each other should, in my opinion, be called a marriage. It depends on your perspective whether you class the gender of the two people as making a huge difference.




A relationship isn't a legal term hence it doesn't matter what definition appears in the dictionary.

Do they honestly believe that God is OK with two men entering a civil-partnership with all the rights of a marriage but he is dead set against this being called a marriage. I never had God down as a pedant.


If you are atheist then the concept of "God" doesn't make sense.

There are all sorts of aspects of law and society that the religious would class as being against the will of God but few of these issues create as much activism as Gay marriage. Surely there are all sorts of things that Muslims do that they disagree with but allow them to get on with. Praying to a different God for one, surely that really pisses him off. Why are they not willing to let non-Christian homosexuals do as they please as well?

Muslims don't pray to a different God.

Homosexuals can do what they like, the debate revolves around the term the state should use.

As I have said and from a personal experience of many people against it, I think there is a large degree of homophobia underlying the campaigns. It is clear from the rhetoric of the argument that they see this as a great evil and a grave danger for society. They have completely failed to point out exactly how this will be the case. What is their vision of the future in 40 years time after gay marriage has been legal for that time? Few would say it aloud but I think they are worried about the spread of homosexuality and think that gay marriage signals further acceptance of gays in our society. I think there are some that see this as an 'enough is enough' situation.

They are free in our society to believe what they wish, but it is somewhat ridiculous in this day and age to think that they can affect how an atheist homosexual wishes to live his life in a diverse secular country. Never mind 'hate the sin not the sinner,' a majority of our country don't believe it is a sin anymore. Why should they have to appease the people that believe they are a sinner?


They don't. They can call it what they like.

#75 Severus

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Posted 16 October 2012 - 10:02 PM

I agree with Maximus Decimus. Makes it easy as he/she has put it far better than I ever could.
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#76 Padge

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Posted 16 October 2012 - 10:25 PM

A marriage is merely a contract, probably one of the earliest forms of contract.

For some reason some people think that the marriage contract is different to any other business contract, that's all it is, and therefore can only be a contract between opposite sexes.

The original idea, I believe, was not a contract between individuals but between families ( to stop feuds ), the male female side just made the contract far more binding when both sides had an investment in any children produced. Same sex contracts would not have the same result so would probably not be considered a good as an idea.

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#77 Wolford6

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Posted 17 October 2012 - 08:06 AM

Ban marriage.

Under Scrutiny by the Right-On Thought Police


#78 dhw

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Posted 17 October 2012 - 12:12 PM

Go on ...


Take a look at different regions of the world and their attitudes to sexuality if religion disappeared tomorrow it would have little impact on homophobia. Religions have at worst been disinterested in homosexuality let alone have strong views on it enough to force legislation through. Even in Europe during the late dark age and early medieval period attitudes to sexuality were fairly liberal and the age of reason had no great impact on open acceptance of homosexuality.

Take a look at the countries which are the most open to homosexuality and look at the countires at the other end of the scale. There seems little relation between how religious a country is and their acceptance to opposition to homosexuality.

#79 John Drake

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Posted 17 October 2012 - 03:27 PM

Religions have at worst been disinterested in homosexuality let alone have strong views on it enough to force legislation through.


Try telling that to former Archbishop of Canterbury George Carey, whose ridiculous outburst on the subject prompted me to start the thread. To say that religions have been disinterested in the subject is a momentous distortion of reality. Many seem utterly obsessed by it.

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#80 Maximus Decimus

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Posted 17 October 2012 - 06:08 PM

I agree with Maximus Decimus. Makes it easy as he/she has put it far better than I ever could.


I'm not a he/she thank you very much.

Not that I'd be bothered of course...




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