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  • A National Defense of Marriage

    Recent attacks on the institution of marriage disregard the importance of married mother-father households to child well-being and the necessity of defending the institution of marriage for the good of civil society. At this week’s Senate Judiciary Committee hearing on a bill that would repeal the federal Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA), panelists supporting traditional marriage outlined some of the many arguments for keeping the institution solely as a union between one man and one woman.

    First, the panelists noted the government’s profound interest in sustaining the integrity of the institution of marriage because of the unique contribution a married mother and father make to child welfare. As Austin Nimocks, Senior Legal Counsel for the Alliance Defense Fund, explained:

    [B]ecause of the fundamental truth that children are the product of sexual relationships between men and women, and that men and women each bring something important and unique to the table of parenting, this government maintains a compelling interest in protecting and preserving the institution of marriage as the union of one man and one woman.

    Tom Minnery, Senior Vice President of Focus on the Family, outlined the strong social science evidence that children are better adjusted psychologically and socially in married mother-father households than in any other family situation. He stated in written testimony, “[I]n all the ways we know how to measure child well-being, having a married mother and father is consistently shown to be the ideal family form across all important measures.”

    But panelists in favor of repealing DOMA dismissed such evidence, asserting that children do not necessarily need to build relationships with both a mother and a father, but that care from any two adults could suffice. As Nimocks pointed out, however, “These advocates are asking the whole of society to ignore the unique and demonstrable differences between men and women in parenthood: no mothers, no fathers, just generic parents. But there are no generic people. We are composed of two complementary, but different, halves of humanity.”

    The importance of current federal law extends beyond the need to uphold the unique benefits of traditional marriage to children and society. Panelists pointed out that DOMA also protects states’ rights. Ed Whelan, President of the Ethics and Public Policy Center, explained DOMA’s role in protecting the principles of federalism:

    “In Section 2 [of DOMA], Congress defends the prerogative of each state to choose not to treat as a marriage a same-sex union entered in another state….Section 2 of DOMA advances values of federalism by helping to ensure that one state does not effectively impose same-sex marriage on another state while at the same time preserving each state’s freedom to define its marriage laws.”

    A significant majority (more than 63 percent) of voters in 31 states have exercised such freedom, defining marriage in their jurisdictions as between one man and one woman. Policymakers should respect voters’ collective wisdom in acknowledging the institution of marriage as a pre-political, foundational relationship that deserves protection in state and federal law.

    As Heritage’s Chuck Donovan writes regarding the many reasons to affirm traditional marriage at the federal level, “As the nation seeks to regain its economic and social footing, it is time not to blur the meaning of marriage further but to rebuild it for the good of future generations.”

    Posted in Culture [slideshow_deploy]

    11 Responses to A National Defense of Marriage

    1. Todd Cunningham says:

      what you call compelling evidence never included same sex parents. But don't worry, your echo chamber won't care. In conservative circles facts aren't impotant when you have dogma

      • Marhall Art says:

        Interesting how you cite no study, research or evidence to the contrary. Talk about dogma! Common sense alone should inform rational people of the beneficial qualities of families headed by both a mother and a father.

    2. Damien says:


    3. Richard T. Nolan says:

      My late father was raised by a single parent, his father whose wife died when Dad was two. Dad grew into a fine man, successful husband and father, and an excellent businessman.
      I have been in a same-sex relationship since 1955, when I was 18. My partner is three days older than I, a college classmate. In 2009, at 72, we were married legally in CT during our 50th class reunion; the service was in our alma mater's chapel and led by three mainstream Christian clergy. Now we are 74 and live in a Florida "continuing care retirement community." However, here we are only domestic partners. I would add that we were both successful in our vocations. (More info at http://www.nolan-pingpank.com/.) We are hopeful that during our lifetime together our CT marriage will be upheld by the federal government – perhaps in time for our 60th anniversary as a couple – in 2015 – or our 65th. We have been very fortunate – upstanding citizens, taxpayers, and a loving family – as are many opposite-sex spouses with no children.

    4. J. Mays says:

      The statistics on divorce between men and women is somewhere around 50%-yes? How exactly does that fit into your position regarding the sanctity of marriage?

    5. Adrian says:

      No one can argue the fact that the creation of life itself is between one man and one woman. This is the gift that God has given humanity. Anything other than this is contradictory to the human race. Since the creation of life exists solely between the seed of a man and the egg of a woman then what should humanity gain from same-sex unions? Further Civil Rights of this country existed primarily for equality of race and not equality for same-sex unions.

    6. Raul says:

      What are you trying to say? That my father and stepmother, whose marriage never produced or intended to produce children, do not have a valid marriage?

      Typical conservative bs twisted logic.

      Just say what you mean: "we don't like homosexuals!" Stop with the sham arguments.

    7. Marshall Art says:

      The canard involving divorce statistics is a poor defense for same-sex "marriages". Loosening divorce laws have harmed the institution of marriage as much as state sanctioning of same-sex unions will. No-fault laws also disregard the sanctity of marriage.

    8. Conrad2010 says:

      GOD! Frowns on same sex unions.

    9. cktheword says:

      Taking estrogen pills will not make you a woman and
      taking testoterone pills won't make you a man.
      Keep it simple, if you are still confused just check your plumbing.

    10. u1022575 says:

      marriage is between man and woman the Zionists have in the mainstream media abhorred and praised same-sex unions which is condemned in the bible furthermore as in the bible it's not Adam and steve and not Eve and Sarah You homosexuals just dont get it Homosexuality is a mortal sin Why dont you ask Lotts wife and why dont you accept why god destroyed the city of soddom. People the zionist media has declared all out war on christians and our beliefs

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