The end result is not in doubt, the Canadian Senate will pass the Civil Marriage Act by July 18. Monday the Senate begins hearing witnesses. Many or all of those that will provide testimony have given the same to the House of Commons committee.
No issue in Canada has been debated as much as Equal (same-sex) marriage over the last four years. Go ahead and let me know if you can find one thing that has been debated by parliamentarians more than this. Well over 500 witnesses have contributed to the official discourse on the subject. The Supreme Court has said granting same-sex couples the right to marry is constitutional. That means with eight lower courts already saying it is discriminatory to do otherwise that Parliament is right to pass a law providing Canadians from coast to coast to coast with the same rights.
Many Christians in Canada support equal marriage. Many people that attend religious services regularly approve or support equal marriage. Canada's second largest religious institution, the United Church of Canada endorses the right of equal marriage.
The issue of marriage does not properly fall under religion in my opinion. The function of marriage has been state controlled for centuries. Religions have been allowed to conduct these legal proceedings, however they have not "owned" the right. The marriage certificate, albeit from a church or a marriage commissioner, has the same weight in law, a law based on common-law and Parliament.
We live in a secular society, one that is to operate free of religious dogma. That does not mean our society waves good bye to the values religions contribute to communities or more importantly to individuals. It means that laws will be made for all Canadians and people within this country, that support freedom of religion and freedom from religion.
A poll recently conducted for AP between May 13 and 26, 2005 asked 1,000 adults from each of the following countries (Australia, Canada, France, Germany, Italy, Mexico, South Korea, Spain, United Kingdom and United States) several questions that had to do with religious beliefs and how people integrate them into their lives.
They found a sizable majority in every country polled opposed to religious leaders involving themselves in political debate. Canadians that responded were 72% opposed to religious leaders getting involved, where as 61% of Americans agreed with us. Mexico which had the most people, 80% who believe in a god, were strongly opposed to religious leaders being involved in politics by a whooping 77%, the most of any country.
My final point...
Canadian Hockey Icon, Don Cherry said it was okay for two guys to marry. Harper should have known the gig was up when Cherry said yes or was that "I do" to Dougie Gilmor?
Take that Stephen Harper.
For more information on social conservatives, Stephen Harper, gay, same-sex or equal marriage, James Dobson, evangelicals, Focus on the Family, Bishop Henry, use the Technorati search box in the side bar here and at Queer Thoughts.
Tags: Gay, Queer, Gay Marriage, Christian, James Dobson, Stephen Harper, Conservative Party of Canada, Canada, Politics