Opinion: Same sex marriage in Hawaii creates potential impact and concerns for traditional religious institutions

| October 24, 2013 | 55 Comments

By Steve Morgan

On Sept. 9, Governor Neil Abercrombie announced that a special session of our state legislature will take place for the purpose of creating a bill to legalize gay marriage in the state of Hawaii. The Governor’s move comes upon the heals of a landmark ruling in June in which the Supreme Court declared part of the Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA) unconstitutional, thus claiming that same-sex married couples are entitled by federal law to the same benefits and recognitions as heterosexual couples.

Longtime Molokai resident Steve Morgan

Longtime Molokai resident Steve Morgan


The intention of the governor is to see a same-sex marriage bill passed by November so that same-sex marriages taking place in Hawaii can be established in a timely manner in order to receive federal benefits for the upcoming year. At this time, Gov. Abercrombie feels confident that the Hawaii legislature will support a gay marriage bill and has proposed a special session to begin Oct. 28.

The proposed bill in its entirety can be found at the website linked here.

I am particularly concerned with the language of this bill in regard to exemptions allowed for religious institutions. In summary, the religious exemption clause states that religious organizations will not be required to perform same-sex marriages or provide facilities for such if the religious institution meets all of the following criterion:

1. The religious facility is regularly used by the religious organization for its religious purposes.

2. The religious organization restricts use of the religious facility to its own members.

3. The religious organization does not operate the religious facility as a for-profit business.

I have concerns in regard to all three of these exemptions as the current language reads. My concerns are as follow:

In regard to exemption #1
. What is the definition of “religious purposes?” The first thing that comes to my mind is an organization such as the Salvation Army. Much of the Salvation Army’s efforts extend beyond what some may consider “religious purposes” including social aid, disaster relief, food and clothing assistance to the poor. The Salvation Army’s new facility in Kapolei provides an array of community services made available to the public including health and fitness facilities. The Salvation Army is not entirely unique. It is common for religious institutions to cover a broad spectrum of community needs. Are such efforts of these religious institutions considered within the domain of “religious purposes?” For most of us, our religious beliefs encompass all aspects of our lives, not just the time spent in religious study and worship.

What are the intended boundaries of the language in this bill as it defines “religious purposes?”

In regard to exemption #2, which states that the exemption to perform same sex marriages is allowed if the religious organization restricts use of its religious facility to its own members.

This also raises questions. In regard to traditional religious services, many if not a majority of the religious institutions in Hawaii have an open door policy allowing anyone to attend religious services or other events within their facility whether or not they are members of the given religious institution. In fact there are many religious institutions that have no membership at all.

As previously mentioned, many of the services provided by these institutions are intended to serve the general public.

In regard to exemption #3, which requires the religious institution to be a non-profit organization. While this seems reasonable, there may be a time in the not too far future when the definitions and demands made by the federal government upon those seeking non-profit status may conflict with what would be considered morally acceptable for many traditional religious institutions. Current federal income tax law does not explicitly address or proscribe discrimination by charitable organizations. There is a strong push however to see this changed especially in regard to discrimination against sexual orientation. The exemptions included within the proposed Hawaii bill, in which exempt religious institutions from being required to accommodate same-sex marriages, could possibly become demands within the definition of “Federal Non-Profit Status.” Without the “non-profit” recognition, the religious institution would not be entitled to the exemptions within this clause.

The bottom line is that regardless of what Governor Abercrombie tells us, this bill fails to adequately protect the unique nature of our traditional religious institutions.

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  1. mkklolo says:

    Steve,

    The key to all of this is that the government has no business in private matters and should butt out of interfering. They really have no business in defining the nature of marriage either. The liberal left…Abercrombie and his ilk…bow in obeisance to the gays, while the right follows the religious traditionalists. In either case, it is government messing in religion and private relationships where it has no @#$!!# business.

  2. Haole Da Mushman says:

    Bigotry is protected by the 1st amendment to the constitution.

    The government should not try to regulate the religious right to be bigots.

    If a church says hey, “we love our congregation, but we can hate whomever we want,” they should be allowed to do that.

    Fear is the heart of Godʻs love, and fear of His retribution is going to outweigh Abercrombieʻs libbo agenda.

    Let the churches hate, let the gays marry, let everyone be for Godʻs sake!

    • kalaniua ritte says:

      there are waay more important issuses than this one…i cant believe it but i agree wit da haole an lolo..if catholic priest can have alter boys then why cant gays marry.

  3. Steve Morgan says:

    Aloha e Ua,
    So here is how it goes down at the capitol yesterday. You get maybe a hundred people who show up to rally in favor of Same Sex Marriage. When it comes time for the rally for those who are opposed there is easily a thousand plus people present. The whole place is packed. Testimony is the same way 10-1 ratio. 1,500 people are supposed to speak but the Senate cuts it down to less than 500 so that they can go home and have dinner. Only a few of the Senate are even present half the time and comes time to vote they take twenty seconds and pass the bill……….Come on Ua, how many times you seen this charade before? Bottom line- its “Social Genetic Modification”

    Here’s the trick question- How do you get a Hawaiian without the koko?

    Answer- Pass the Same Sex Marriage Equality Bill.

    Here’s how it works- Because this bill is basically a substitutionary bill, it plugs the same sex couple into the husband wife model. It has to kind of fake it though when it comes to children. What it does for lesbian couples is this – should either spouse have a child the other automatically becomes the legal natural parent for the child. So here is the basic formula.

    1)Sue, who is a haole girl marries Kapua a Hawaiian girl

    2)So the couple can have a baby, Sue gets pregnant by Fred a haole guy

    3)Sue gives birth to Fred Jr. and now Fred Jr. is the legal natural child of Kapua and is Hawaiian.

    Hilahila keia!

    Steve

    • Steve Morgan said: “When it comes time for the rally for those who are opposed there is easily a thousand plus people present. The whole place is packed. Testimony is the same way 10-1 ratio….……….Come on Ua, how many times you seen this charade before?”

      Steve
      for a second there I thought you were talking about the process that was used by dirty rotten scoundrels on Molokai who shouted down the common sense folk and tried to intimidate everyone into silence so that they could have their way and keep Molokai in the stone ages.

      As for your personal opinions about Same Sex. Don’t you know there are three things you are never supposed to talk about in Public: Sex, Religion and Politics.

      Keep it to yourself, please.

      Your God said Judge Not Lest Ye Be Judged. Love Thy Neighbor as Thyself. Good advice for everyone, don’t you think.

      It would be great if everyone stopped judging others and started minding their own business and taking care of what happens inside their own front door.

      • kalaniua ritte says:

        i do take……wait why am i responding to a person who dont have the guts to put them selves out there,steve gives his opinion but uses his real name like a real man supposed to,i respect that…neighbor are u still afraid of the dark???

  4. Steve Morgan says:

    Dear neighbor in Kalae,
    Quoting from the same Book, my God also has a few things to say about gay marriage, but regardless If this were really a “live and let live” issue I would have no problem. I have no intention to tell a gay person how they should or shouldn’t live. Instead what we have is an overreaching bill with the intent to drag all of the rest of us in to support gay marriage whether we like it or not. Just look at the states that have passed Marriage equality bills and you will see what follows.

    Using California for an example- immediately after Same Sex marriage was passed, the Governor signed into bill a law requiring the public schools to teach a pro homosexual life style curriculum for all grades with “no parent opt out”. Basically the kids of those who are opposed to same sex marriage are a forced audience. So much for “live and let live”

  5. molokainews says:

    Steve,

    Can you offer a referral or link to the California law that requires “public schools to teach a pro homosexual lifestyle curriculum?” What is the name of this law?

  6. steve says:

    steve morgan is a smart guy, but equating opposition turnout with anything is misleading… at best.

    take for instance your neighbor in kalae’s inference (assuming he means la’au)- are we to assume that because ONLY 300 people showed up to “shout down” the idea that the other 7000 moloka’ians were either indifferent or in favor?

    300 out of 7k is less than 5% of a very small beautiful island’s population.

    5% is more like mob rule than a slim majority.

    if memory serves, there was little else happening on island that evening except fred claus playing up at the movie theater.

    likewise a “thousand people” on o’ahu is nowhere near 5% of that island’s population let alone those that mokulele’d in for the vote.

    i’m indifferent on the topic except where the STATE makes rules regarding the CHURCH, but citing a 10-1 ratio is a herring.

  7. Steve Morgan says:

    According to Senator Hee (Chair) the official tally of testimony was approx 40% in favor of Same Sex marriage and 60% against. This included those not attending the rally.

    The new California law for the Gay curriculum is SB48

    • Haole Da Mushman says:

      California SB48 is about including different people with different back grounds in to the state’s education curriculum. It goes far beyond gays, but also

      “…a study of the role and contributions of both men and women, Native Americans, African Americans, Mexican Americans, Asian Americans, Pacific Islanders, European Americans, lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender Americans, persons with disabilities, and members of other ethnic and cultural groups, to the economic, political, and social development of California and the United States of America, with particular emphasis on portraying the role of these groups in contemporary society.”
      From the CDE website (http://www.cde.ca.gov/ci/cr/cf/senatebill48faq.asp)

      So are you singling out the homosexual part of this legislation, or do you also think that teaching about pacific islanders (many long time (centuries) supporters of Mahu lifestyle), or the American Indians is bad too?

      Follow up question, if gays exist (which I think we can agree they do), then that means there are gay children that should not be excluded from a fair and truly balanced education.

      2nd Follow up Question: Have you been as vocal about people eating shrimp as a sin? Do you hate the shrimp too?

      “‘Of the animals that live in the sea or in a river, if the animal has fins and scales, you may eat it. But whatever lives in the sea or in a river and does not have fins and scales — including the things that fill the water and all other things that live in it — you should hate. You must not eat any meat from them or even touch their dead bodies, because you should hate them. You must hate any animal in the water that does not have fins and scales.” (Leviticus 11:9-12 NCV)
      Or is it just the gay stuff? Just want some clarification on that one from ya.

      As for the imbalance in the 60/40 split between those who oppose and supporters, this shows the power the churches have to mobilize hate and intolerance.

      Let love rule Esteban. Follow the new pope’s lead perhaps and forget being so concerned with the actions of others, but in it’s stead, be concerned with your actions, and how they reflect while looking in the mirror of what Jesus taught.

  8. Steve Morgan says:

    Da Mushman,
    For the most part your response is a non sequitor, the only issue at hand is the same Sex marriage bill. I am for protecting Gays and in no way feel that gays or there children should be victimized. I also believe that those who hold hold traditional religious values should be protected and not be victimized. ……By the way, I don’t eat shrimp.

    • A pre-emptive strike to prevent civil rights equality against someone to prevent being victimized by that ‘someone’. This the same strategy used in Lebanon by the Israelis and PLO and look where it has gotten them: A death spiral of counter attacks that has ruined life and removed any opportunity for dialogue, understanding and coexistence. Great strategy, huh?

      Some churches and some so-called persons of faith are so worried about becoming ‘victims’ that they forget and have abandoned the core principles they are trying to protect. Sad.

      Giving someone else the same rights you have is not the same as taking your rights away from you.

      Civil rights are not being divided, they’re being multiplied and there are several churches that get this point and are leading by example. The Episcopal Church is a good example.

      Steve Morgan: There are many people who disagree with you and other people like you. Out of respect for diversity of thought and opinion and in keeping with the faith you seem to have, you should want for everyone the same rights and privileges you have.

      The definition of ‘everyone’ is not open to discussion or interpretation, either.

      By the way, I’m straight and I am a Christian but I’m not Episcopalian.

    • Haole Da Mushman says:

      Steve
      The second half of my note may have been non sequitur (‘ur’, not ‘or’ if you care about these things), that said, the description of your “California law for the Gay curriculum is SB48” decimated your argument that gay marriage is going to lead to promotion of the gay lifestyle in the classroom.

      You either did not do your research on SB48, or are holding on to soundbites intended to needlessly scare people.

      My point here is that when people either do not know what they are talking about, or selectively edit what they are talking about to forward their narrow discriminatory agenda, they should not be paid attention to or be corrected.

      Sir, you should put forth a reasoned argument that is well researched.

      Until such time, I will be ignoring the hate that you cloak in a bible filled with love, but in reality is no more the actual word of God than the September issue of Vogue.

      PS It pleases me that you respect the word of God regarding Shrimp. Do you pay attention to 1 Timothy 2-12 too? That one is awesome. Shuts them right up, I love that one.

      • Steve Morgan says:

        In regard to SB48 I hesitated to put this forward because of the shallow interpretation that any one reading it might arrive at. In understanding any bill it is important to understand case precedence both on a state and federal level, to explore the maximum potential of the promoted subject matter and last, to examine the impact of the restrictions being imposed. This bill is obviously being used as a platform for the voice of the gay community and is being used to mute any opposing thought. The bill states “existing law prohibits a governing board from adopting instruction materials that contain any matter reflecting adversely on sexual orientation” What is the extent that this can be carried out? Is literature or materials which discuss traditional marriage (husband/ wife) discriminatory against gays? Is discussion of a traditional family unit taboo? What about the mention of any religious institutions which reject homosexuality, including Christianity, Judaism and Islam? Furthermore this bill brings sexual content in to the arena of children who are far too young to participate. It was originally intended to be a bullying bill but it is hard to recognize this within the bill. Rather than create a unique bill relating to gay advocatism this bill has been revised adding “sexual orientation” to its people group categories with the intent of establishing legal precedence in a very sublime manner. I wish I had the time to put together an articulate cumulative report of the impacts already occurred in States where same sex marriage has occurred. It would be startling for those who believe that this is simply an issue of equality. I encourage you to examine this on a deeper level….. In regard to scripture, here is one for you:

        Romans 1:18-20

        But God shows his anger from heaven against all sinful, wicked people who suppress the truth by their wickedness…. Yes, they knew God, but they wouldn’t worship him as God or even give him thanks. And they began to think up foolish ideas of what God was like. As a result, their minds became dark and confused. Claiming to be wise, they instead became utter fools. And instead of worshiping the glorious, ever-living God, they worshiped idols made to look like mere people and birds and animals and reptiles.

        So God abandoned them to do whatever shameful things their hearts desired. As a result, they did vile and degrading things with each other’s bodies. They traded the truth about God for a lie. So they worshiped and served the things God created instead of the Creator himself, who is worthy of eternal praise! Amen.

        That is why God abandoned them to their shameful desires. Even the women turned against the natural way to have sex and instead indulged in sex with each other. And the men, instead of having normal sexual relations with women, burned with lust for each other. Men did shameful things with other men, and as a result of this sin, they suffered within themselves the penalty they deserved.

        • Haole Da Mushman says:

          Kind Sir

          Your notion that, “This bill is obviously being used as a platform for the voice of the gay community and is being used to mute any opposing thought,” assumes that somehow the gay lobby is cloaking their nefarious intent under the cloud of 15 different social groups/constructs being used in education as described in the SB48 Bill on the CDE website I listed above.

          Do you have evidence for your allegation? Anything? Your anecdotes so far do not add up to statistically significant information and demand that I cry Bollocks!

          After centuries/millenia of discrimination against gays by the religions you mentioned (Holy Trinity of Christianity, Judaism and Islam), the very people that these religions barred/subjugated/tortured/exiled/murdered/burned/crucified are now up in arms that these people are now an accepted part of modern society and are asking to be recognized in the same forums as traditional western judeo-christian lifestyles.

          You cannot pray the gay away, you cannot torture it away, so why not learn to live with it and fight a more important battle another day?

          As for the Romans quote, it looks like you are using the King James Bible, which as I am sure you should know was not written by God, but by folks heavily influenced by Henry the 8th, famously known for disavowing the Papacy so he could marry Anne Boleyn as a divorcee…. No original texts/manuscripts were used.

          Thus sir, I respectfully disavow your version of the Romans quote as heresy by Lutheran influenced church rebels who did not respect the Holy See, built on the mount under which Peter lay….

          Sir, perhaps leave the grasping of fingers on to these slippery threads to others so inclined and instead open your arms wide, to all of God’s creatures and let them all live as they so choose, for it is not our job to judge.

          • Steve Morgan says:

            So here is the version recognized by the Holy See:

            The retribution of God from heaven is being revealed against the ungodliness and injustice of human beings who in their injustice hold back the truth.

            For what can be known about God is perfectly plain to them, since God has made it plain to them:
            ever since the creation of the world, the invisible existence of God and his everlasting power have been clearly seen by the mind’s understanding of created things. And so these people have no excuse:

            they knew God and yet they did not honour him as God or give thanks to him, but their arguments became futile and their uncomprehending minds were darkened.

            While they claimed to be wise, in fact they were growing so stupid
            23 that they exchanged the glory of the immortal God for an imitation, for the image of a mortal human being, or of birds, or animals, or crawling things.

            That is why God abandoned them in their inmost cravings to filthy practices of dishonouring their own bodies-
            because they exchanged God’s truth for a lie and have worshipped and served the creature instead of the Creator, who is blessed for ever. Amen.

            That is why God abandoned them to degrading passions: why their women have exchanged natural intercourse for unnatural practices; and the men, in a similar fashion, too, giving up normal relations with women, are consumed with passion for each other, men doing shameful things with men and receiving in themselves due reward for their perversion.

          • Steve Morgan says:

            And one more thing I failed to mention in understanding the purpose of a bill is what is the source of momentum for a bill- Who introduced the bill, who are its primary supporters. In this case the revised version of SB48 was introduced by Senator Mark Leno who previously served as Chair of the California Legislative LGBT Caucus.

            Furthermore, I don’t question that those who supported this bill did not have good intentions. I do believe however that they are misguided and fail to recognize the long term consequences of their actions.

            In January 2012, California public school districts must implement the new requirements of SB 48
            through “supplemental materials” (i.e., handouts, homosexual biographies, classroom discussions, essays and other
            homework, outside speakers, videos, dramas, etc.) and the printed textbooks will come in a few years. As a result of SB
            48, all public school districts in California are under the following orders:

            1. Textbooks and instructional materials must positively promote “lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender Americans” as “role” models.

            2. Children as young as 6 years old will be taught to admire homosexuality, same-sex “marriages,” bisexuality, and transsexuality (cross-dressing and “sex change” operations).

            3. Children will be taught to support the political activism of “Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender, Intersex and Questioning” (LGBTIQ) political groups, as the bill requires “particular emphasis on portraying the role of these groups in contemporary society.”

            4. Teachers will be made to positively portray homosexuality, same-sex “marriages,” bisexuality, and transsexuality, because to be silent can bring the charge of “reflecting adversely” or “promoting a discriminatory bias.”

            5. School boards will be required to select textbooks and other instructional materials that positively portray “LGBT” lifestyles, because to be silent on these subjects opens them up to charges of “reflecting adversely” or “promoting a discriminatory bias.”

            6. Parents will not be notified, nor will they be able to exempt their children, from this new core curriculum.

          • molokainews says:

            Aloha Steve,

            This list of six “orders” that California public schools must follow is found where? I read the original as well as the fully edited text of Senate Bil 48, along with the SB 48 guidelines offered by the California Department of Education, and found no such orders. This is the most accurate description I could find: “The Fair, Accurate, Inclusive and Respectful (FAIR) Education Act amends the education code to require schools to integrate factual information about social movements, current events and history of people with disabilities and LGBT people into existing social studies lessons. It also prevents the State Board of Education from adopting instructional materials that discriminate.”

            The CDE states, “This law does not change the standards, nor does it include any authority for the State Board of Education (SBE) to change the standards to reflect the law’s provisions. However, the content required by the law is not in conflict with the standards. The California content standards provide a description of what students are expected to know and be able to do at each grade level, but they are not intended to be a restrictive or exhaustive list of topics.”

            As a professional educator with a master’s degree in Curriculum and Instruction, I feel I can safely interpret the CDE statement as saying that the state standards are the only curriculum guidelines that teachers must follow. Steve, how do you develop the interpretation that teachers must now promote homosexuality in the classroom?

            – David Lichtenstein, Editor

          • Steve Morgan says:

            David,

            I did not state that these orders were given to California schools by any official institution, rather within the ambiguous structure of the bill, these are conclusions that can easily be derived at. Certainly this isn’t the first bill you have reviewed and understand the open ended conclusions that can be drawn from a bill as well as the outcomes in regard to restriction and limitations in the structure of a bill.

            Briefly looking at the six items I mentioned.

            1)Textbooks and instructional materials must positively promote “lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender Americans” as “role” models.

            The bill states that “the school shall not adopt any text book or instructional materials which reflect adversely upon persons on the basis of sexual orientation”

            A simple matter of conclusion, if you can not reflect adversely then you must reflect positively. Because of the way the bill reads, the sexual identity is being recognized simultaneously as the person’s contribution, making the distinction of the two subject words “contribution” and “sexual identity” incapable of being detached from each other. In the case of contributions to history, you generally have good and bad role models. With out any bad role models you are left with only good role models. (The neutral characters don’t make interesting reading are are usually lost in the dust of history.)

            2. Children as young as kindergarten must be taught to admire persons who engage in homosexuality, same-sex “marriages,” bisexuality, and trans sexuality (cross-dressing and “sex change” operations).

            Because there is no exclusion provision of any age group, this bill automatically applies to all age groups. When referring to the word sexual orientation, the definition includes gay, bisexual transsexual and transgender. In regard to “admire persons” Again, if you can not reflect adversely in regard to sexual orientation you must reflect in a positive light. When we see someone in a positive light in general we are being admirous.

            3. Because SB 48 requires “particular emphasis on portraying the role of these groups in contemporary society,” children must be taught to support the political activism of so-called “Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender, Intersex and Questioning” (LGBTIQ) political groups

            Because the most recognized activity in contemporary society of the LGBT group has been in the form of political activism, to reject the group’s activism (which is entirely based on their sexual orientation) would be the same as “reflecting adversely upon persons on the basis of sexual orientation”

            4. Teachers are required to positively portray homosexuality, same-sex “marriages,” bisexuality, and transsexuality, because to be silent can bring the charge of “reflecting adversely” or “promoting a discriminatory bias.”

            You can not positively portray something and remain silent.

            5. School boards are required to select textbooks and other instructional materials that positively portray “LGBT” lifestyles, because to be silent on these subjects opens them up to charges of “reflecting adversely” or “promoting a discriminatory bias.”

            This one is redundant

            6. Parents will not be notified, nor will they be able to exempt their children, from this new core curriculum –

            An opt out clause is required for students to be dismissed, No such language exits and no language exists to notify parents.

            David, Even if you believe that what I am stating is “hypotheses” instead of “orders”. Can you offer any evidence that any thing that I have mentioned is not possible within the language of this bill?

            Also here is an example in Massachusetts of what happens to a parent who tried to remove his child from class.

            Father of 6-Year-Old Arrested Over Objection to Homosexual Curriculum in Kindergarten Class

            LEXINGTON, Mass, April 29, 2005 – David Parker was arrested Wednesday by Lexington Police, allegedly for “trespassing” at his son’s elementary school, while attending a scheduled meeting with the principal and the city’s Director of Education over his objections to homosexual curriculum materials and discussions in his son’s kindergarten class.

            According to a press release, at the meeting, Parker requested that the school inform him of when homosexual discussions would take place, so he could exclude his son from the activity. He said he would not leave until his request was granted. The Principal and the city’s Director of Education both refused his request. They then telephoned the Superintendent of Schools who also refused. Police were called, who told Parker that unless he left the school, he would be arrested.
            Parker was arraigned in Concord District Court on Thursday on one count of trespassing; his attorney entered a plea of not guilty. Parker was freed after paying $1,000 in bail and agreeing not to enter school property. He is due back in court for a trial June 1.

            “This is an unbelievable outrage,” said Brian Camenker, a friend and Newton, Mass. parent. “It’s where last year’s same-sex ‘marriage’ ruling has brought us.”

  9. steve says:

    steve morgan-

    thanks for taking the time to not only pen this piece but in your comments that followed.

    conversation instead of confrontation on moloka’i just might catch on!

    it’s my hope you’ll stay as/more focused on where the governor intends to lay his cable as you’ve been on where some kanak lays pipe.

    i look forward to your next contribution to themolokainews- fo’ real!

    • molokainews says:

      Aloha Steve,

      In the Lexington, Mass. example you cite, I’m curious as to what the”homosexual curriculum materials” actually were in kindergarten. Need details before can draw a conclusion about the father’s actions.

      Unless teachers decide to suddenly sexualize their curriculum, none of the things you mention will be a problem. Homosexuals should be noted in history books not because of their sexual orientation but in spite of it. This is the idea behind anti-discriminatory laws.

      The fears of what you mention are nothing more than scare tactics and do not represent some kind of mandate to promote homosexuality. You came to the conclusion yourself that this was simply a hypothesis and did not represent any kind order within the school system. This is a huge difference.

      Just read the New York Times story that said GOPers told Christian bookstores they will be “forced to hire drag queens” by very serious, grownup organizations like the Family Research Council. This is the type of scare tactics that I object to.
      http://www.nytimes.com/2013/11/04/us/politics/senate-vote-on-workplace-bias-against-gays-a-test-for-the-gop.html?pagewanted=all&_r=0

      • kalaniua rittre says:

        eh how i can put my pic up like u dave

      • David,
        Great post!

        I’m still waiting for Steve to answer my post about why he wants to impose the rules his religion on everyone.

        Same Sex marriage is not a crime, and as I’ve stated earlier, granting the same rights to same sex couples is a multiplication of civil rights for more people. It is does not take any civil rights away from anyone.

      • Steve Morgan says:

        When a legislative bill is reviewed it is examined for all of its potential opportunities. The momentum is certainly out there to see this bill utilized in the manner in which I have explained. If there was no intention for the bill to be used in the way I have described then language would have been added stating such limitations. Mark Leno is no dummy. Furthermore, a legislative bill has the authority to dictate school charter, not the other way around.

        Also, unlike other minority groups which are multi faceted, including culture, geography etc. the sole identification of the LGBT group is found within its sexual orientation. If you remove sexual orientation from the LGBT group, it ceases to exist, therefore sexual orientation is attached to any activity pursuant of this group. Thus, it is easy to conclude, that within the definitions of this bill, criticism of any kind against the LGBT group could be considered “reflecting adversely upon sexual orientation”. By adding sexual orientation as one of the categories of minority groups, the very nature of this bill is changed in how it is applied to LGBT thus creating a “no fault zone” for LGBT even giving preferred status of protection over other minorities. This is somewhat ingenious as it creates a bill within a bill. Something that isn’t recognizable upon a quick review.

        In the example you give in the New York Times, which states that the “Family Research Council are warning their supporters that the bill would force Christian bookstores to hire drag performers. “ Certainly this is a hyperbolic statement meant to attract attention. But the question remains within the content of the the federal bill that you are referring to- Would Christian and Orthodox Jewish businesses be able to discriminate and not hire transgender employees? and the answer is no, no matter how bizarre their appearance, they could not discriminate and not hire these folks if they are technically qualified, including “Drag Performers” should that be the case. My point being that so called “scare tactics” can posses truth.

        Regarding the article I posted and in regard to your comment in which you wrote“I’m curious as to what the homosexual curriculum materials actually were in kindergarten?” with the hint I am guessing that you thought it was probably benign. My response is- Who cares what the level of suggestion was- In regard to young children could we please keep sexuality of all forms out of the class room, or is this also part of the new agenda we must accept?

      • Steve Morgan says:

        David, As I already stated, Even if you believe that what I am stating is “hypotheses” instead of “orders”. Can you offer any evidence that any thing that I have mentioned is not possible within the language of this bill?

        • molokainews says:

          The things that you are mentioning are possible even without this bill. This legislation, as written, has no impact on the Hawaii Board of Education and therefore everything you mention is unsupported speculation.

          • Steve Morgan says:

            David,
            So the bottom line is that you have no answer. So I’ll move on.

            Do you also applaud bill AB1266, the most recent addition to California law?

            This bill would require that a pupil be permitted to participate in sex-segregated school programs and activities, including athletic teams and competitions, and use facilities(bathrooms, showers, locker rooms) consistent with his or her gender identity, irrespective of the gender listed on the pupil’s records.

            In plain language what this bill allows for is that if a guy for example feels that he is not really a guy, but instead feels like he is a girl trapped in a guys body, that guy now has legal access to use the girls bathrooms, showers and locker rooms at school.

            Like SB 48, this bill was also spear headed by Senator Mark Leno in the wake of passing same Sex Marriage in California. Once the momentum is created it hardly stops there.

          • molokainews says:

            Steve,
            We need to bring common sense to this debate. Check out the recent Civil Beat story:

            “Massachusetts does not require that students in any grade be taught about gay marriage.” – J.C. Considine, spokesman, Massachusetts state education department

            The same goes for all of the other states we (CB) spoke to that have legalized same-sex marriage.
            http://www.civilbeat.com/articles/2013/11/05/20328-would-gay-marriage-bring-the-homosexual-lifestyle-to-hawaii-students/

          • Steve Morgan says:

            David,
            From the Civil Beat Article- Quoting Anne Lopez, an attorney at the attorney general’s office. .“This is just a bill about marriage, this is not a bill about education”. This is ridiculous David! The primary point of this article is that there is nothing in the Same Sex Marriage bill that affects education. That is a no brainer. The concern is, as we are starting to see in other states, are bills that follow up in the wake of this bill and the crescendo effect. States that have official LGBT programs in the schools include California, Washington and New York. Legislation is in process in Iowa and it looks like Minnesota is next. LGBT programs in Massachusetts are voluntary varying from school to school while celebrating LGBT days in most of the schools. Most of these bills are new, and have yet to really develop. California won’t even have its new books in place until next year. There is no case history making the investigation by Civil Beat premature and meaningless.

            People are not blind, they see the obvious rapid degeneration of this culture and its “How I feel ethics” so people are naturally concerned. If you have bills like SB48 which centers around recognizing the contributions of the LGBT community, you are not going to dodge the issue of Sexual orientation, and Same Sex marriage. It takes very little creative thought to imagine this.

            Now how about getting back to my question.

            Do you also applaud bill AB1266?

  10. Steve Morgan says:

    Kalae neighbor-

    I am obviously aware that many people disagree with me and in most conversations I find myself to be in the minority.

    Certainly the challenge in coming up against “marriage equality” is found in how the word “equality” resonates with large numbers of people here in Hawaii, thus many equate opposition to same-sex marriage as hateful, backwards and the moral equivalent of racism.

    If we are truly honest however with the term “equality” the truth is that equality is not the only value that we take into consideration when making a determination. The 8 year old child is prohibited from voting or drinking, a blind person can not be an airline pilot and a man may not go inside a woman’s bathroom- the list goes on. Clearly discrimination and even separation is a part of our culture. The question to be asked is whether or not the discriminatory act benefits or harms society. In regard to either promotion or adversity to Same-Sex marriage the issue itself is that of a behavioral model, which in turn impacts the surrounding society (for better or worse). In contrast, in regard to racial equality, the pigment of one’s skin color has absolutely no impact on our society.

    Regardless, I do believe that equality could be established for Gays who seek to have life time mates and I believe that this could be accomplished without redefining marriage. This could be established by creating an independent legal entity of their own design and of their own title or name, entirely distinct from the institution of marriage. Rather than trying to create a substitutionary model such as marriage, which allows for procreation, it could be a model uniquely designed for the gay community. And rather than impose itself upon an ancient institution that holds at its core traditional religious principles, it could be one which represents its own values.

    It is my opinion that it is better that opposing ideas live next door to each other than in the same home. Essentially what I am promoting is “Separate but Equal”. I believe that by creating an institution separate from marriage, that this would diffuse a great deal of hostility and allow for much greater peace in our land.

    To be honest, most things that gays and conservatively minded straights do are not in conflict. But in the areas where there is conflict of ideology, by separating these institutions, I believe that there would be a much more tolerable tone. There are always extremists and angry people, but I believe that these are the minority. I believe that the general community would find the dual model acceptable, especially if it was crafted to protect both sides of the issue.

    In light of this I am saddened by the DOMA decision as it has caused us to move in haste. As we become a less homogeneous society we will need to explore more avenues which allow for co- existence. If one group only manages to mute the other, nothing is accomplished.

    • molokainews says:

      Aloha Steve,

      Thank you for your submission and for handling the criticism with equanimity. It doesn’t seen like any voice is being muted in this debate which continues loudly in the House today.

      Look forward to your next article!

  11. This single sentence explains so much of what has been Molokai’s downfall for the past 10 years. We finally get to see it in print.

    If one group only manages to mute the other, nothing is accomplished.

  12. Steve Morgan,
    I totally respect your point of view. You are entitled to it. Good for you that you have a clear opinion. I don’t agree with you but I’m not going to try to shut you down, either.

    I’m sure there are many gays or lesbians who do not share your same religious beliefs… how do you justify imposing your religious beliefs and accompanying constraints on another group who doesn’t have the same religion? Why should they be bound to your personal religious beliefs?

    I don’t mean any offense when I say this… but how do you know your religion is the ‘right’ one and should therefore impact everyone else’s life?

    Wouldn’t it be more equitable for you to live your life by your rules and let others live their lives by their rules? That was one of the core intentions of the Founding Fathers many years ago.

    • Steve Morgan says:

      People call me “old-fashioned” for my belief in an ancient and timeless teaching and for my faith in God.

      In truth, it is they who are old-fashioned;
      for they cling to an idea that failed decades ago.
      The Age of Reason, of Enlightenment, of Humanism—when Knowledge and Intellect were worshipped as the Redeemers of Mankind—all this died and was buried when the most civilized and intellectual nation on earth committed the most unthinkable atrocities.

      Humanity, to survive, must accept, feel, stand in awe and connect to That Which Is Above us.

      Rabbi Menachem Mendel Schneerson

      • Steve,
        Your arguments are your own and their accompanying rules should apply only to you.

        To suggest that your rules of life should be universally applied to everyone else is flawed.

        Suggest you adopt the practice of Live and Let Live. You’ll find more peace, set a better example of your own faith, and probably make a few friends that you otherwise would have never known. Your life will be richer, your perspectives broader and your understanding deeper.

        • Steve Morgan says:

          Kalae neigbor,
          I refereed to texts in the New Testament because that is how you first addressed your response to me so I played by your rules. It seems that when you don’t like those rules who set blame somewhere else. That same book that you quoted from which states “Love your neighbor as yourself” is also very clear in the matter of Same Sex marriage.

          And while homosexuality has always existed, at no time in the history of the world has homosexual marriage been endorsed or the union of homosexuals been considered comparable to the uniting of a man and woman, not by any religion, society or culture. The exclusion of traditional marriage has been a historically consistent value held by the religious and non religious. 

          In support of gay marriage, I believe that what is mistakenly being promoted as a movement of compassion is in truth representative of the narcissistic belief of this generation that we are somehow wiser, more compassionate and possess more insight than any previous generation.

          • Haole Da Mushman says:

            Steve
            You entire argument hinges on the word of the bible, which you believe to be the direct word of god. Perhaps you have forgotten that it has been retranslated 15 times + since it was assembled from hundreds of gospels by the emperor Constantine in the 5th century.

            So to hand your hate on this book that is so far from the actual word of god, but in reality, the word of men who want to control other men in the most vulnerable field of the populace, faith. Like Benny Hinn and Pat Roberston behind him, the book on which you hang your argument is chock full of holes, lies, hypocrisy and excuses for absurd violence including willing the rape of your own daughter int he correct circumstance.

            An argument that hangs itself on such an absurd recreation of history, and a manipulated formation of modern “faith” is nothing more than an explosion of situational ethics that were convenient for the white men that wrote the document, over and over.

            If god intended for the world to hear, why did he not simply show himself in a place where people could read and write and properly record the history (China was capable of such at the time) so the future generations would have a resource of truth instead of heretical BS?

            Keep your religion in your pants Steve. We will all be better off for it.

          • Steve Morgan says:

            Sorry Mushman,
            My version is in Hebrew and remains in its original language as passed down from Moshe to the Men of the Great Assembly to the Sages. The men who passed these words on were hardly white, they were Semitic. In fact Moshe himself married the Midianite- Zapora, a black women. The writings today are entirely accurate to those found in the late second temple era with absolutely no alteration. So to never be denied, God appeared before 600,000 witnesses at Sinai where these words were received. And from generation to generation these words have been carefully and scrupulously passed. Most important to be understood from these writings is that we are accountable to God and forever in His presence. Nothing is in secret. This simple thought has radically altered the world. There is always evil but the level of civility developed from these writings is unsurpassed. A simple fact- without God you would cease to exist. And by the way, what I found so incredibly inspiring at the Capitol this last week was the shear number of God fearing people. Absolutely incredible!

  13. steve says:

    eh how ua can put he pic up like u dave

  14. You guys don’t get it.

    Why should one religion force itself on all others?

    That’s fanaticism and completely incongruent with the US’ Freedom Of Religion philosophy.

    I would not impose my religion onto a Bhuddist or Sikh or Muslim because I would not want them to impose their religion on to me.

    Steve is using his religion as the basis for his argument against Same Sex marriage.

    Marriage is not a religious institution. Its a civil institution, as evidenced by the following:
    – you can get married outside a church and the marriage is still legal
    – there is no requirement for a marriage to occur inside a church or for it to be officiated by a pastor/priest/rabbi for it to be legal
    – persons of different religions (or even atheists) can marry each other
    – a divorce cannot be granted by any church

    Steve can argue his morals until the cows come home but all he’s trying to do is push his religion onto others and that is a very ‘un-American’ thing to do.

    He is certainly entitled to have his opinion, and he comes across as pious and self-righteous when he shares it. But what else would you expect from someone who is so self-assured that they give not consideration other’s points of view or accommodation to what others believe?

    David,
    good thing for you that the original post was on the Editorial page because that’s all Steve’s thoughts are -nothing more than one man’s editorial.

    Keep your newspaper fact-based, impartial, and unbiased. Please.

    • molokainews says:

      Hence the headline begins with the word “opinion.”

    • steve says:

      i gotta disagree with you, yourneighborinkalae.

      i hope what you are seeing here is david forstering a conversation by using themolokainews as a platform for multiple contributors.

      some we might agree with and others not, but the conversation is what’s been missing in media F-O-R-E-V-E-R.

      look! there’s another ‘opinion’ piece from the paniolo prince and his wahine. take a look at that last paragraph, i think many on moloka’i would agree with that opinion.

    • Steve Morgan says:

      Kalae neighbor-I never made the claim that I wasn’t a part of this narcissistic generation…..May the force be with you!

  15. My post to David said “good thing for you that the original post was on the Editorial page because that’s all Steve’s thoughts are -nothing more than one man’s editorial. ”

    Then, on another line, it begged him to keep the paper unbiased, fact based and impartial.

    Nothing there implied that he was reporting your opine as unbiased, impartial fact because it was indeed biased, partial to your opinion and not fact based.

    You still haven’t answered the question: How do you justify wanting the rest of Hawaii to live by your take on Christianity, especially when there are many non-Christians in Hawaii? Don’t you think that’s egocentric.

    I hope this public discussion has helped others see another point of view that allows them to come to their own rational conclusion on what to believe and accept.

    • Steve Morgan says:

      Kalae neighbor,
      Since you wish to abandon Judeo/Christian values-If same Sex marriage is ok with you I am guessing that you would be fine with bisexual marriage (threesome or more) or with incestuous marriage or polygamy? How about a hybrid- bisexual incestuous polygamy? How do you negate these behaviors in your relative sphere of morality?

      • Steve Morgan says:

        Kalae neighbor,
        And furthermore, You can worship your dog as far as I am concerned. What we are talking about is a basic value as emanated through all of history by the religious and secular alike. By Buddhists, by Muslims, by Sikhs, by Pagans by Marxist Atheists, by every culture, society and race. Until now, none have supported the idea of Same Sex marriage. All of these cultures
        have strongly held to the idea that marriage is between male and female and an institution that protects procreation. You are the intruder, the one who is attempting to force your belief upon those covering the span of millennium who wish to protect this ancient institution. Even worse, you wish to force your belief in total disregard of what the long term consequences will be.

        As I said before, this is the greatest social experiment in the history of man kind. It is “social genetic modification”

        From someone who has not “Evolved”

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