Yes, I'd like to agree with this. People often get very passionate about their beliefs and this can cause hostility on controversial issues such as this. I'm pleasantly surprised as to how this has gone and would like to thank everyone for that.The topic is certainly a sensitive one that's to be sure, and I'm happy to see that it has been dealt with sensitively on this board, a big nod of approval from me on that.
(Less work for me and Bmat. )
(And, for Aldan: Less work for Bmat and I. )
You find that most of the arguments about homosexual marriage, though legal issues, stem from religion. Religion is the base for marriages, which isn't wholly surprising, but it should not be the manner of legal marriages. As Fantasy Man pointed out, there's separation of church and state in America, as well as just about every other nation in the world today.
I found it rather amusing that the biggest supporter of Gay Rights that I know of, meaning in person, is the priest at my church. That's right, a priest, of all people. You may or may not recall the time when there were supporters of gay Rights wearing rainbow-colored sashes... belts... who went to church and were denied communion; not on the basis of them being homosexual but on the basis of their open support of it? The Sunday after that our priest delivers a particularly fiery sermon strongly criticizing the churches handling of the matter and strongly supporting Gay Rights. And after he finished our congregation gave him a standing ovation. It was by far the best argument fighting for Gay Rights, from a religious perspective to boot, that I've ever heard.
There was another, more recent, sermon he gave that was not specifically on Gay Rights. It was after the host of The 700 Club said that we should assassinate the Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez Frias. But I thought it worked here, again this is from a religious standpoint and not a legal one. He said, "We are not the Church of the elite. Christ did not choose to preach to the enlightened, to the saved. He went to the sinners and preached to them, because we are not a church of the Pure. Pat Robertson leads a church of the pure. Christ did not and neither should we."