I browsed through most of this thread the past couple nights and I didn't see it mentioned that not one species on the planet has been found in which homosexual behavior has not been shown to exist (with the exception of species that don't have sex) Your God created all those creatures too, so unless he made a crap ton of mistakes, it's "normal" so just stop. People are more than welcome to believe it is a sin and abstain from doing it themselves - and I believe they also have the right to teach their children (and anyone else who wishes to be taught) that they believe it is a sin. However, it is not the churches place to force their personal religious beliefs upon fellow Americans. It is also not acceptable for the happiness and civil unions of same-sex couples to be denied based upon said religious belief. The only plausible argument I hear from the faithful boils down to them feeling that God invented marriage and thus the church has the right to dictate that it is a union between a man and a woman alone. Basically a copyright on coining the term and its meaning - and I can accept that. So make up a new word for same-sex couples and add "or <new term for ‘other’ civil unions>" to all the instances of "marriage" on the books and just be done with it. I personally think it would be easier to strike it off the legal/government side entirely. Eliminate “married” tax brackets (average out "Single" and "Married" rates or w/e,) and do some extra paperwork for legal “assumption” type situations (custody, property, wills, etc.) Folks can then, if they so desire, have whatever on the side ceremony to show (other people) or (God) they are together and, everyone’s happy. Somewhat ironically, the term marriage has now been so extensively integrated within our legal system that its religious context has necessarily become meaningless in order that it comply with the law of the land it was unwittingly injected into. I do not believe there is, nor ever was, any malicious intent to specifically degrade or deface the religious context of marriage, it was merely a lack of foresight on the part of legal writers who did not prophesize how integrated marriage would become in laws, and further, had no societal context for a possible conversation about same-sex union rights. Perhaps with the term “marriage” returned to full church control, and freed of social/government onus and obligation, the sanctity of marriage in the eyes of the Lord could be reclaimed and brought to its former importance and respect, not only within the walls of the churches, but in the eyes of the country, and perhaps even the world. I mean I’m agnostic and I find the way people flippantly marry and divorce disturbing - I cannot imagine how frustrating it is for those that ‘truly’ believe in the words written in the bible regarding marriage.