Speed Read: ‘Pacts of cohabitating”

MISSISSIPPI HOUSE READIES TO VOTE: The Mississippi House is expected to vote today on a bill, cleared by the Senate, to enable people to discriminate against others by claiming a religious motivation to do so. The House bill has been amended from the Senate version, but opponents say it still leaves a lot of room for discrimination against gays, blacks, and others. Governor Phil Bryant has sent expressed support for one section of the bill which would add “In God We Trust” to the state seal but has not expressed his position on the religious bias language.

POPE SAYS OK TO ‘EVALUATE’ CIVIL UNIONS: Pope Francis told an Italian newspaper last week that the Catholic Church needs to “evaluate” the reasons some governments recognize same-sex relationships through civil union status. The Corriere della Sera published the March 5 interview and the Catholic News Agency published an English transcript. The interviewer noted that “many nations have regulated civil unions, and asked “Is it a path that the Church can understand? But up to what point?” Francis replied:?”Marriage is between a man and a woman. Secular states want to justify civil unions to regulate different situations of cohabitation, pushed by the demand to regulate economic aspects between persons, such as ensuring health care. It is about pacts of cohabitating of various natures, of which I wouldn’t know how to list the different ways. One needs to see the different cases and evaluate them in their variety.”

MICHAUD ORGANIZES FOR ORDER: U.S. Rep. Mike Michaud (D-Maine) announced March 6 that he is part of a Congressional effort to urge President Obama to sign an executive order prohibiting discrimination against LGBT people by federal contractors. While he is still pushing the House to vote on the Employment Non-Discrimination Act (ENDA), said Michaud in a press release, “In the absence of Congressional action, the President should follow the example of strong anti-discrimination laws in Maine and other states to ensure that no one in the federal workplace is discriminated against because of who they are or who they love.”

SAY THAT AGAIN? “Legislators in Kansas, Arizona and 23 other states who are properly determined to protect religious freedom can begin by asking themselves: Does any religious conviction justify denying lesbians and gays a basic legal promise of non-discrimination in hiring, public accommodations, and housing? Surely the answer to this question is no. Correcting that inequity would begin the process of recognizing that both sides – gay couples and religious objectors – have rights and that reasonable accommodation is possible only when both sides have something to gain.” –David Blankenhorn and Leah Ward Sears in a Time magazine essay Sunday. Blankenhorn was a witness in support of Proposition 8 in January 2010. Sears is a former Chief Justice of the Georgia Supreme Court and presumed to be a potential nominee for the U.S. Supreme Court.

SERIOUS MINORITY STATUS: Only seven out of the world’s 1,645 billionaires are openly LGBT, according to a report March 3 from Forbes magazine. They include six gay men: Dreamworks co-founder David Geffen, Facebook funder and Paypal creator Peter Thiel, fashion designers Dominico Dolce, Stefano Gabbana, and Michael Kors; and medical equipment heir Jon Stryker. The seventh LGBT billion is also the first transgender billionaire, Jennifer Pritzker, of the Tawani wealth management firm in Chicago.

2 Responses to Speed Read: ‘Pacts of cohabitating”

  1. Francois says:


    How gracious for the Pope to suggest what civil rights the State should grant and how typical for the Church to intrude. An interesting article but why should we look to the Church to determine what civil rights the State grants?

    Marriage is what the civil law says it is! History 101 anyone? The State governed marriage for thousands of years and throughout the Roman empire as a civil contract long before the Church even existed! Marriage has first and always been a civil matter governed by the State. The Church had absolutely nothing to do with marriage until the Ninth Century when those married in a civil ceremony merely showed up on the church steps and asked the priest to come out and bless their civil marriage. It is, and always has been, the State which granted the clericy civil authority to solemnize the marriage contract which, if it wants to retain civil authority, it must administer in accord with civil law. And therein lies the real rub! The Church wants to exercise that civil authority on it’s own terms. Marriage was not even a sacrament in the Church until the Eleventh century by which time the Roman empire had fallen that the Church WAS the state. The historical truth is that the State gave the Church licence and now it insists on monopoly.

    How typical, give Church the proverbial inch and it always grabs for the infamous proverbial mile. The Church has always relied on ignorance to foist its power on others.

  2. Francois says:

    And P.S. please do not forget! WHO was it who emboldened the churches in these most recent developments? Why it was none other than LGBT activists in state after state who capitulated to the religious faction to enact these gay jim crow exceptions into law in order to get legislation passed. That is an exemption and exception no court has allowed in supporting marriage equality.

    So, knowing the courts would never go there (and will eventuality strike them down) and watching the courts uphold marriage equality, the self-serving, seeing what’s coming down the pike, avoided a judicial decision and enacted legislation to grant what no court ever has. And when the courts strike these down, as they surely will, the tub-thumpers and LGBT collaborators will be able to say, it was “judicial activism.”

    The fight for marriage equality has always and only been about one thing: Taking down Jefferson wall! .

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