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Arizona Daily Wildcat
Wednesday, November 23, 2005
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Equal rights angle a terrible argument

Tom Mosby ("Majority of Americans think homosexuality is wrong") points out that "every citizen of this country can get married, just not to somebody of the same gender" and concludes that "the way the law is now, everyone already has equal rights. " This is an extremely bad argument.

First, it works equally well against interracial marriage. Under anti-miscegenation laws, every citizen could get married, just not to somebody of another race. Would Mosby say that everyone had equal rights to marriage in those days? Second, it works equally well against homosexual sex. If we outlawed homosexual sex, every citizen could have sex, just not to somebody of the same gender. Would that count as equal rights?

Indeed, you can run endless variations on this argument. If we outlaw marriages between fat people and skinny people or sex between short people and tall people or whatever, then, according to Mosby's argument, everyone still has equal rights. After all, you can still get married or have sex, just not with members of the group deemed legally unacceptable. This is a terrible argument and people who oppose gay marriage should stop using it.

Cole Mitchell
philosophy graduate student

No need for 'cynical manner' in Iraq debate

The letter is in response to Mr. Scott Patterson's column "Bring the troops home." I must say that I think he well exhibited a problem common on the issue of the war. By including remarks when referring to the vice president as "I swear he eats people for fun," and the president with "President Bush ... reminds me of a bobble-head doll," he is costing his side of the argument much needed validity.

As I finished reading the article, I watched Vice President Cheney give a speech defending our actions in Iraq and responding to the notion of immediate withdrawal. He did so quite eloquently and without accusing anyone of cannibalism/bobble-headedness. Until advocates against the war learn to leave behind the knee-jerk, sarcastic, middle-school-level attacks that afforded them no political gain in 2004, they will continue to lose political momentum.

Furthermore, Mr. Patterson uses the term "ex-Marine," when describing Rep. Jack Murtha. The correct term is former Marine, but having read the article I would not expect Mr. Patterson know this: His utter lack of understanding of all things military was already apparent. The cynical and mocking manner with which he addressed the issue reflects his lack of personal investment in the war in Iraq.

The issue of the war is far too serious for those of us with friends and family serving Iraq to make light of it by using joking analogies and poking fun at the intelligence of the commander in chief, regardless of our opinions about what to do next. In his speech on Monday, Cheney fully reiterated his support of Murtha, and his right to object to the war. Yet Mr. Patterson failed to mention in his proposals about "immediate" withdrawal from Iraq that Murtha never called for immediate withdrawal to begin with. In fact, he voted against immediate withdrawal that same day.

Rep. J.D. Hayworth of Arizona called for a vote on immediate withdrawal from Iraq, the result being 403 votes against withdrawal and three in favor. As an individual with many complaints about the current administration and the way the war is being handled, I encourage all like-minded voters to demand more professional reporting about the issue.

James Carlson
undeclared sophomore

Heterosexual marriage a 'social abstraction' of religion

I am writing in response to Rob Monteleone's letter ("Gays already granted enough 'unnecessary privileges'") and would like to thank him for enlightening me on my unnecessary privileges; I never knew I had it so good. It must be all the parades and wild nights at IBT's that have hazed my senses.

May I first say, marriage is not defined as a union between a man and a woman. That's a social abstraction of religion and the Bush administration. Marriage has existed a lot longer than said organized religions, and its definition, like the world, has changed over time. There have been times and places in history that have been for and against same sex, interracial and inter-religious marriages. And as many Americans would agree with me, it should never be the majority that rules the minority.

Gay marriage aside, I would like to inform him and the rest of the Wildcat's readership that I and the rest of the LGBTQ community do not appreciate being referred to as "them." It's rude, it's insulting and it's bigotry. It's equating someone to the scum on the bottom of your shoe, a mentality awfully close to Nazism.

Americans are quite entitled to their opinions on whether I should be able to marry the person I love, that's the nature of debate, of progress; but don't talk down to me as if it's by your grace that I'm allowed live my life. It's not by your so-called tolerance that I walk down the street holding my loved one's hand. That's my free will; that's any couple's free will.

It is personal attacks like this that expose the bigotry of many of the far right, and I personally think writers of and to the UA should be above this. That's the bottom line.

Dylan Grippi
programs coordinator, ASUA Pride Alliance

Bush wanted to correct Iraqi 'mistake' of the '80s

David Schultz's "logical" argument that Bush did not lie about weapons of mass destruction is hilarious ("To err is Bush, but to lie?"). He foolishly bases his entire argument on the question of what possible motivation Bush would have to drag the country to war on false pretenses. Schultz should have researched the matter more before making such an argument, because there were well-known reasons for going to war other than WMDs (and no, it's not oil).

Saddam Hussein is our fault. The very same people who backed Saddam in the 1980s (Rumsfeld, Wolfowitz, et. al.) were the hawks pushing for the war. Look it up. Does David Schultz still call this a coincidence?

The Bush administration's true motivations for the Iraq war weren't entirely without merit. In short, the administration thought that it could correct the huge mistake it made two decades ago by taking out Saddam, while at the same time building a democratic Iraq. The idea was (and is) to use Iraq as a seed for Western-style government in the Islamic world. However, the administration shirked the long debate this dubious plan deserved, instead lying to the public and playing to our fears.

Bush exploited America's fears by lying about WMDs, but it wasn't for malicious reasons - just unrealistic ones. No matter; an American presidency should not be allowed to take the nation to war under false pretenses. Anyway, before screaming "conspiracy theory," people ought to look beyond headlines and Fox News' talking points.

Ben McMorran
physics graduate student

Nature is 'gross'; get over it

This is in response to the many letters on the issue of "gay marriage." I'd like to first address Mr. Mosby ("Majority of Americans think homosexuality is wrong") and his clichéd claims against the right to marriage. "Life isn't fair," eh?  That's not really the way I want my lawmakers thinking, and I hope it's not the end-all for your thought process. 

I'll agree that life is in fact not fair, but that doesn't mean we can't be fair to others when we have the means to be fair. Life not being fair simply refers to crappy things that are out of our control - like in that Alanis Morissette song. 

With that said, I'd like to move on to your argument involving people who want to marry the ones they love; in the case of "gay marriage," the one they love happens to be someone of the same sex. OK, it seems that you liken this to loving an animal or an inanimate object - things that I assume you think are gross. Should laws be based on what people think is gross, then? Should picking one's nose be banned? I can be hyperbolic, too. What about fat people wearing skimpy clothing - a lot of people think that's gross. Should it be banned, too?

Perhaps the next step would be for you to say something like "Allowing gays to marry will only lead to people wanting marry their brothers and sisters and stuff, too." And my response, if I'm being honest, is why the hell not? What's it hurt for two human beings to be recognized as a couple by the government? Marriage doesn't even demand sexual intercourse between to two parties entering into the union, so there's absolutely nobody who gets hurt. 

Oh yeah, and stop saying we're a democracy - that's as annoying as the rest of the right-wing rhetoric: We're not a "majority-rules" democracy; I wish we were, but ask the "Schoolhouse Rock" gang about districts and the electoral college, and I'm sure you'll get an entertaining tune about how much our voting system truly sucks.

Phillip Lybrand
media arts junior

Homosexuality is nature's population control

I wanted to respond to Tom Mosby's letter "Majority of Americans think homosexuality is wrong." I wanted to point out that Tom's article fails to cite a credible source for this information.

I agree with Tom that marriage is a religious institution and so a religion should dictate the rules of that institution. However, marriage can now be performed nondenominationally and outside of a religious institution (i.e. by a judge). The times are changing, and marriage represents a naturally occurring phenomenon in all of life, which is mating.

Since we are human, animal marriages should be considered natural and everyone should have the right to be married. What's more is that the rapid emergence of homosexuality in human culture may represent an evolutionary trend that correlates to our rapidly increasing population. I will admit I do not have a source to cite this information, but I do not need one as it is simply my idea: Homosexuality can be explained by the fact that nature is trying to curb large populations from growing too big, and since gay couples technically cannot produce kids of their own they may use their resources on their kin's children or on no children at all.

I will leave it brief for this letter, but you can discuss this with a professor of evolutionary psychology, of which we have a few (who are amazing, by the way), and see what they think. If you look objectively at human nature and take out cultural and political biases, and your own personal assumptions, you will see that everything happens for a reason, and to fight or oppress behavior without understanding it is to cause naught but chaos and suffering.

David Siddall
UA alumnus

'Cut and run' not the answer for war-torn Iraq

Scott Patterson must be red in the face after the Wildcat ran his "cut and run" column on Monday ("Bring the troops home"). The same day he proclaimed that pulling out is no longer a radical idea, Hilary Clinton blasted the idea as "a big mistake." The Democratic wet dream of a presidential candidate has either turned conservative or she simply possesses some common sense.

Pulling our troops out of Iraq means pulling out every other American in the country, including those attempting to rebuild the nation. Any infidel left behind would certainly be targeted, since terrorists have repeatedly shown that the innocent will not be spared. It's not the occupiers being attacked, it's the western philosophy.

The American forces in Iraq are the only law and order in some remote cities and towns. The Iraqi police and military are not yet ready to take charge of a war-torn nation. On top of that, inexperienced Iraqi troops would do much worse against the attacks that are aimed to take down the developing democratic government. Pulling the troops out now would be a disastrous mistake. If Iraq didn't descend into civil war, any progress would be stagnated by the political infighting and continuing insurgent attacks.

Patterson claimed that if our troops are removed and the attacks continued, then the Iraqi people would withdraw their support. Yet every day the news of attacks always incurs a higher Iraqi death toll than an American death toll. A good amount of the recent attacks were not against American troops but Shiite mosques and the Iraqi people inside. Americans were also not the target of the attacks during the elections, democracy was the target.

The immediate withdrawal of U.S. troops would be the quintessential example of a "knee-jerk" reaction, the same thing the anti-war folks claim the initial invasion was. If that's not hypocrisy, well, you can fill in the rest.

Jayson Auterino
junior majoring in political science and creative writing

Leave the institution of marriage alone

Once again the Wildcat has stirred up controversy on campus on the issue of gay marriage, this time by promoting the liberal idea that anyone who does not support gay marriage is a close-minded homophobic fascist. All in an attempt to paint gays and lesbians as victims to anyone who defends the institution of marriage as a bond between a man and a woman.

Not everyone who is against gay marriage is a homophobe. I do not support gay marriage and I am a straight man. But just because I do not fully support the gay agenda and do not have interest in having sex with another man does not mean that I would not associate with homosexuals. Nor am I not one of those ultra-religious freaks who will damn all gays to hell or, worse, kill someone for being gay.

Personally, I am sick and tired of politically correct people in America who scream homophobia, racism, sexism, etc. way too easily simply because there are people out there who do not agree with the views of others, including liberal views. But even if all who oppose gay marriage are wrongfully bigots toward the gays, no liberal is going to convince me that there are no homosexuals who are bigoted themselves.

Most homosexuals have this double standard that it is OK for people to be Christianphobes and not homophobes. Which is why many gay Christians often have difficulty gaining acceptance into gay groups. Reason? The same pro-gay groups (like GLAAD) are out there validating stereotypes on what it means to be gay, i.e. an atheist. Also there are gays who are just as closed minded as straight people when it comes to exploring sex outside their own sex preference.

The last we need in America right now is an issue that divides the people up to the lowest common denominator. There are more important issues for all Americans to focus on like national security and the war on terror.

So here are some solutions to the issue of gay marriage. Leave the institution of marriage alone. Let the homosexuals either have civil unions, or let them create their own institution where homosexual couples can have the same benefits as straight couples. Just as long as there is no intent to wrongfully hurt others and or break any laws in the process.

Donald Wilson
UA alumnus

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