I'm with Scott on this one. Civil Unions should be available for all peoples be they same sex, opposite sex, transgender or transexual. I see no problem in calling these civil unions, marriage. I see no problem in making civil marriages legally binding and church marriages not: So that a traditional faith wedding must be first or second recognized by the state as a civil marriage if it is to be legal.
What I do have an issue with is people who openly flout religious conventions expecting a traditional faith marriage. It's wrong and disrespectful towards the faith involved. As a Hedonist, I am affected by this and so cannot be married in a faith based ceremony. But then I wouldn't want to be. It is disrespectful towards my beliefs. It also affects same sex partners and atheists and many other kinds of people... but then again, why should they demand a faith based ceremony when that faith and they are at poles intellectually from one another.
Let the church wed the faithful and let the state legalize the union. For the rest of us, let the state recognize out commitments in love legally and find our own traditions of celebration for same.
I'd also say that some homosexual couples are religious as well as homosexual, and for their church to deny them the wedding rituals implies that their church is holding some outworn rule or doctrine against the interests of the persons. This is precisely what Jesus spoke up against in his illustration of the Sabbath being made for man, not man for the Sabbath.
Interesting. I'm reading 'The Kindly Ones' at the moment and the author, through the main character is discussing the position of homosexuality as it relates to Christianity, claiming that homophobia is a left over from Judaism.
I'm inclined to disagree with that, since Christianity is nothing more than a new and improved Judaism. Judaism 2.0! Christ was a Jew after all and preached Judaism. What he added, which was somehow lost to the Chosen People of the time, was a sense of kindness that extended beyond their own kind.
Anyways... Christian and Jewish Faith is so mixed up at the moment, with so many different 'brands' spinning their faith based wares, that if the same sex couple don't get what they want from one church, guaranteed there'll be another church who will offer them marriage... at a pretty price of course... in the name of God even. LOL