Someone in the newsroom looked at the day’s headlines and said, “Looks like another bad day for the Church!”
A glance at the rundown of news can be depressing. President Obama has thrown his support behind legislation pending in both houses of Congress that would repeal the 15-year-old Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA). This would allow legally married same-sex couples to take advantage of the same benefits married heterosexual couples receive under federal law.
Ironically called the Respect for Marriage Act, the legislation would end what its supporters consider illegal discrimination against legally married same-sex couples.
However, advocates for traditional marriage point out that it would open the door to redefining marriage and would eventually force states where same-sex marriage is illegal to recognize such unions.
Daniel Avila, policy adviser for marriage and family to the U.S. bishops’ Subcommittee for the Promotion and Defense of Marriage, told Catholic News Service that arguments for the repeal of DOMA on grounds that it violates basic civil rights hinge on the definition of marriage itself.
“The Church’s position, which is the position which agrees with that of other religions as well as secular organizations and groups, is that marriage is the union of man and woman,” Avila said. “You can’t take away the reference in the definition to sexual difference without then changing what marriage is.”
Thanks to Gov. Andrew Cuomo and some backdoor politics, New York already has passed its own version of “Respect for Marriage,” called the Marriage Equality Act. Last weekend, more than 400 same-sex marriage ceremonies were conducted across the state. As if to rub salt into open wounds, Cuomo kept state buildings open so that the first unions could be declared legal on the Lord’s Day.
Not to be outdone, opponents of same-sex marriages held rallies to protest the new law. The largest one was in Manhattan where State Sen. Ruben Diaz led thousands in a demonstration in favor of traditional marriage. Of course, reading the daily newspapers in New York City, you wouldn’t even know that such rallies had taken place. Instead, readers were subjected to page after page of same-sex wedding photos.
Others also are determined to take action. In an interview on Currents, the daily news show seen on The NET, the Rev. Jason J. McGuire, executive director of New Yorkers for Constitutional Freedoms, said that he has filed an appeal in state court to repeal the new same-sex marriage bill on the grounds that it was rammed through the legislative process with complete disregard for proper procedure.
“Constitutional liberties were violated,” he said. “Today we are asking the court to intervene in its rightful role as the check and balance on an out-of-control State Legislature.”
Other New Yorkers who are fed up with this secular philosophy that is infecting American society can make a difference by participating in the political process. Had enough? Join the New York State Catholic Conference’s legislative hotline to get better informed and involved. Log on to www.nyscatholic.org.