Friday, October 13, 2006

By Rev. Max J. Rigert: Acrimonious amendments deserve a 'no' vote

There are two items on this November's ballot which transcend the realm of partisan politics and need careful and ethical consideration.

The first deals with capital punishment and seeks to reverse the state of Wisconsin's long-standing opposition to the death penalty.

The execution of criminals is brutal and cruel, but more significantly has been shown to be ineffective in the curtailment of crime.

Innocent people have died, the administration of the death penalty has been shown to be racially prejudicial and the extended legal processes have proven to be far more expensive than life imprisonment.

Help preserve our state's reputation for sanity and progressivism by defeating this unwelcome overture.

The second item is the so-called marriage amendment which seeks to define marriage as soley between a man and a woman, but proceeds to outlaw any sort of legal relationship between members of the same sex.

The amendment is seen as an affront by homosexual persons and men and women cohabiting without benefit of legal marriage.

First, Wisconsin state statutes already define marriage as being between a man and a woman. Thus, those who want to define marriage in the traditional Judaic-Christian understanding will find this amendment redundant.

Second, the amendment seems unnecessarily punitive to those who choose to live in a same-sex relationship, or to the many women and men who today live together unmarried ... whether we like it or not.

This amendment would prevent such domestic partners from sharing health insurance benefits, retirement benefits, the privilege of family hospital visitation rights, the ability to invoke living will stipulations for one another, and the simple freedom to live together with the rights others in committed relationships possess.

Many of us within the Christian faith tradition find both of these amendments to be acrimonious and ethically stifling, rather than life affirming.

You are urged to emphatically vote 'no' on both measures.


Anonymous Anonymous said...

Each voter needs to look past the rhetoric that is being presented before voting.

The only marriage recognized in Wisconsin is that which is between a man and a woman. That is already established in our state. There's not a need to re-establish that which already exists. Please make sure that you understand the impact of your vote. While you may wish to protect the institute of marriage of one man and one woman, please know that the State of Wisconsin has already done that. The ammendment you are being asked to vote on is misleading. If you honor and value your vote, please be an educated voter. Take the time to understand the implications that will unfold, once the votes have been counted.

Further, please consider that implications of supporting the death penalty. In giving the State the right to take the lives of individuals, please consider the implications that this has on issues of justice and faith. Whose soul is recognized as worthy? And who decides? How does this unfold on a larger scale? If we embrace the death penalty, how can we embrace a pro-life, pro-war stand?

These are not easy issues. Please make sure that when you step into the voting booth, you have given thoughtful and prayerful consideration to the vote that you cast.

9:55 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Regarding the Marriage ammendment. The problem with our current law is that activist judges could rule it unconstitutional. Since this would be an ammendment to the constitution, activist judges could not overturn it. If you want examples of states that have had their laws overturned, check out New Jersey, Vermont, Massachusetts and California.

If this ammendment really won't affect anything, why is so much money being spent by gay rights groups opposing it. They know if the voters are informed of what is at stake, they will lose. So their only hope is to confuse people into opposing it.

9:01 AM  
Blogger Dan Plutchak, editor said...

Post from William Huxhold:

"anonymous" seems to think that activism is wrong or bad. I believe that
activism is good. If more people were activists, then more people would be
involved, informed, and in a better position to make decisions such as voting
on this issue. I personally do not want government to control what Catholics
believe is a sacrament. I believe that the government should stay out religious
affairs. I will vote "NO".

9:32 AM  
Blogger M Quernemoen said...

Its not the activist people I'm worried about, its the judges twisting long standing traditions to fit their personal views.

This ammendment is about having the people of Wisconsin decide what Marriage is and is not.

If you have no opinion about how marriage should be defined, you should vote "No". If you don't like the ammendments definition of marriage, you should vote "No". If you want Marriage to continue to be defined as between a man and a woman, you should vote "Yes".

I have voted "Yes".

9:23 AM  

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