MEDIA ALERT: The Ron Reagan Show on Air America

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Steve will be joining the Ron Reagan Show on Air America tonight at 6:15 PM EST. He will be talking about North Korea’s missile launch and the international reaction to it.
Steve has called on President Obama to adopt a nuanced response that aims to support elements within North Korea that would like to take the country on a different path.
— Ben Katcher

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One comment on “MEDIA ALERT: The Ron Reagan Show on Air America

  1. Gerald Cole says:

    Marriage
    An essay of questions
    By Gerald Cole
    Marriage. The very word has caused emotional flair ups around the country, to the point where it has become as divisive a word as abortion. Who owns marriage? What is it? How does it work and what is its history?
    Gay men and women have recently begun to demand equal rights and just compensation for their daily lives. After all, they pay taxes the same as straight men and women. They go to church and pray. They Vote. And, as our declaration declares, they have the same right to life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness. But do they have the right to marry?
    I would ask that we, as a country, do what has not yet been done. We need to define marriage. Not as a union between a man and a woman. That is as arbitrary a definition as declaring pi equals 4 (as was almost done in the Indiana Senate in 1897). No, to define marriage we need to answer several crucial questions.
    ï‚· First, what is the purpose of marriage?
    ï‚· Next, who is obligated to marry?
    ï‚· Third, what are the roles of a person who is married?
    ï‚· Is the concept of marriage a universal? In other words, does being married in the United States have the exact same meaning as being married in any other country in the world?
    ï‚· Who has the right and responsibility to perform marriages?
    ï‚· Is marriage a religious based institution? If so, does the government of the United States have the right to perform or define marriage?
    ï‚· What are the advantages, socially, morally, economically, and, most significantly, politically of being married?
     And finally, since we have put so much emphasis on the phrase “traditional marriage”, what is the traditional purpose and definition of marriage in history?
    Eight questions, all of which have yet to be answered by anyone on either side of the debate. Undoubtedly there are many, many others to be asked. In fact, the answers to these will create more questions as we progress.
    I would propose some possible answers, though I want anyone involved in the debate to find their own answers and offer them up. What is the purpose of marriage? I suggest that it is to strengthen and develop our society. When people get married they develop a sense of commitment and loyalty to each other. From that basic bond they create the foundation for our communities. Families support each other and offer a foundation to work together. To maintain a relationship at least one partner needs to work. When children are involved the parents model good behavior (hopefully) and skills that will contribute towards a better society. They are protection from bad, guidance towards good, and the very bricks of our world.
    Then why is it important that marriage be between one man and one woman only? If society is the intended benefactor of the relationship of marriage, why can’t two men or two women also contribute to that foundation? In fact, it stabilizes our society further when we allow these relationships to formally develop. There are some who would contend that the purpose of marriage is not as a unit intended to build our society, but rather a unit whose only purpose is to provide a foundation for the raising of children. Okay. But then how do we explain couples who do not have children? Are they breaking the commandment of marriage? Should they be forced to have children if they want to remain married? Should they be jailed if they refuse to procreate? What about those who are physically unable to bear children?
    In fact, why is it important that only one man and one woman be involved in the raising of a child? It is the social prejudices alone that cause this to be an issue. There is no evidence at all that children raised by two members of the same gender have any greater disadvantage over children raised by heterosexual couples or by single parents. None.
    So then, who is obligated to marry? People who are having sex? Is that our definition of who should marry? Pregnant women. They should be married. Even if their pregnancy is the result of a rape. Wait. That doesn’t make sense. Any woman who is between the age of 18 and 28 should be married. That’s rather sexist, although the concept of marriage seems to be more mandatory for women than for men.
    How about love. If two people are in love they should be allowed to get married. From that loving relationship children can be raised and enter the world with a strong sense of relationship and love. That seems to be what most people have in mind when they think of marriage. But love is not an exclusive property of those who are straight. Gay men fall in love. Gay women fall in love. And couples from both types of relationships have raised very healthy well adjusted children.
    But, some protest, gay love is sick and perverse. I would argue that logic as ignorant. How can someone define the parameters of another person’s emotions? In fact, defining love is a much more intense and perhaps impossible task than defining marriage. And, if we are going to make love the criterion for marriage, how do we know when that love is real? There are people who date for years waiting to see if their love is true. There are others who marry and have never had any positive emotion stronger than lust for their partner. There are many who have fallen in deep true love but have never married for a variety of personal reasons.
    So here we are again at a required definition complete with consequences. If two people are in love, live together, create loving children, and yet never marry should they be punished? How hypocritical that two men who truly love each other are denied the opportunity to marry.
    Traditional marriage had very little to do with love. Many marriages were arranged by a professional matchmaker or by the parents of the bride and groom. Many marriages today are still created that way, in and out of the United States. Marriage was a way to join together two pieces of land. Marriage was a way to unite two families or tribes. That is traditional marriage. Is that what the defenders of traditional marriage have in mind?
    Women are worthless. They are nothing more than property, incapable of living on their own without the support of a man, be it a father or a husband. The marriage ceremony is the transference of property, nothing more. Ownership of a woman is transferred from the father to the husband. Often the wife would have to present a dowry to the husband to sweeten the deal. Her value is so low that it takes a few sheep to make it worth the husbands time.
    Of course, this is a ridiculous notion. Tragically, however, this is traditional marriage. Before we decide to define marriage as a man and a woman we had better be careful that we know the history of this definition.
    I have touched on only a few of the eight questions I originally asked. There are many answers and many more questions. I have not even hit on the issue of religion. Nor have I tackled the ridiculous issue of the greatest defenders of the sanctity of marriage are people who have defiled marriage repeatedly. Can someone who divorced his wife while she was in the hospital be a reliable spokesman for traditional marriage? Can a bigamist be allowed to decree gay men can not be married? Can a man who is on his third or fourth marriage truly be allowed to define marriage for the rest of us? In order for us to seriously deal with an issue that affects so many we need to have answers, not emotions. And answers from reliable sources.
    I ask for answers. They do not have to be the same as mine, but they need to address the issues I have brought up.

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