Monday, October 27, 2008

Crossing Guards

Thank you, Brittany, for reminding me...

Every morning, Caleb and I go on some kind of walk. This is for exercise for me, but also so I can take Caleb some place a little more interesting than the 3x5 foot "patio" that also houses my bike and our BBQ. We'll have a backyard someday, but in the meantime, we go to parks. Anyway, in order to get around to our various locales, on some days we meet up to 4 school crossing guards. Two of these three I find particularly adorable. My favorite is the old man who packs in his own camping chair to hang out in while he's not helping youngsters safely cross. He has some kind of southern drawl accent and asks me, "Do you need help getting across, ma'am?" from said camping chair that is sitting in the shade probably a good 30 feet from the corner. I don't even mind so much the two in the middle who seem like they're not always sure what to say when I wish them a good morning. I don't blame them for this...they're used to kids who aren't always very polite. It's the last---and the closest to where we live that unreasonably gets under my skin. She also has a lawn chair, but is sprightly and hops up out of it while I'm still 20 feet from the curb. Now, let's also recall that I haven't been in elementary school in what? 13 years? I'm a full grown-up person with a kid of her own, yet somehow, this aged woman is supposed to have better reflexes in a car vs. pedestrian situation? Does she really believe that my garguantan red stroller is a little too subtle for your average mom driving kids to school and she must compensate with her neon yellow vest and hat? Is she afraid I'll forget to look both ways? Now, I know what you're thinking, "she's just doing her job. She's just trying to make sure everyone is safe". Well, the old timer in the other camping chair I completely adore. He's looking out for me, but doesn't expect that I am incapable of safely crossing the street. Is it wrong of me to be annoyed? I feel like a five-year-old. Maybe she feels like she shouldn't be getting paid without putting in her best effort. Maybe she's just trying to put in an honest day's work. So, my completely adult solution? I take the side roads and avoid the intersection altogether. :)

Friday, October 10, 2008

On a More Serious Note...

I am fairly confident that the only people reading our blog know how we feel about this topic, but if not, I never want it to be said of me that I didn't make my stand. "Marriage between a man and a woman is ordained of God and...the family is central to the Creator's plan for the eternal destiny of His children." --The Family: A Proclamation to the World

Right now, I'm wishing I could somehow still claim Californian citizenship so that I could vote YES on Prop 8.

There are many reasons why marriage between a man and a woman needs to be protected, some of which I will elaborate on, but the fundamental reason why marriage should be between a man and a woman only is because that is how God, our Eternal Father in Heaven, has defined it. Through His eternal plan of happiness, He makes everything in life possible--therefore--He sets the conditions. If there were no other reason to keep marriage between a man and a woman, this alone would be enough. The Lord spoke to Moses and asked Moses to pass the word along to all the children of Israel that, "Thou shalt not lie with mankind, as with womankind: it is abomination." (Leviticus 18:22). Likewise He said, "If a man also lie with mankind, as he lieth with a woman, both of them have committed an abomination..." (Leviticus 20:13). Our word today, sodomy, means "the homosexual proclivities of the men of the city in Gen 19:1-11. Copulation with a member of the same sex." (Merriam-Webster's Collegiate Dictionary, 10th edition) It is the clear, then, the practices going on in Sodom, and the Lord's response to these actions is found in the book of Genesis 19:24-25,

"Then the Lord rained upon Sodom and upon Gomorrah brimstone and fire from the Lord out of heaven;
And he overthrew those cities, and all the plain, and all the inhabitants of the cities, and that which grew upon the ground."

I don't mention this account to suggest these calamities are sure to befall us if we do not protect marriage. That is His decision to make. I offer this example to illustrate that at the very least, the Lord feels strongly about this topic and to honor Him, I want to do what I can to help uphold His laws. Some will say that because a person is born with inclinations toward homosexuality, they are justified in acting on it. Again, the Bible teaches us this is a false teaching: "There hath no temptation taken you but such as is common to man: but God is faithful, who will not suffer you to be tempted above that ye are able; but will with the temptation also make a way to escape, that ye may be able to bear it" (1 Corinthians 10:13). The inclinations or temptations may be there, but temptation to sin never justifies the sin.

In my opinion, because it is the Lord's will that marriage is between a man and a woman is the most important reason why to protect marriage. However, other factors are applicable.

For a full exposition of the following, please see this link regarding the "End of Marriage in Scandinavia."

Scandinavian countries such as Norway, Denmark, Sweden, etc. have tried the gay marriage "experiment" and the results are alarming. These countries legalized gay marriage and accepted gay unions throughout the 1990's. In parallel fashion, each country's marriage rates have sharply declined. For instance, in Norway, out-of-wedlock births between 1990 and 2000 increased from 39%-50%. By 2004, 60% of first born children were born to unwed parents. The acceptance of gay marriage brought about the separation of marriage and parenthood. Essentially, it taught that individuals could be married without being parents. Therefore, they can also be parents without being married.

No-fault divorces, beginning in the 1970's, taught that marriage was for the purpose of happiness of the individual and not for the greater good and happiness of the family as a whole. It was taught that a happy divorce is better than an unhappy marriage, while statistically, this is not the case. "The research identified happy and unhappy spouses, culled from a national database. Of the unhappy partners who divorced, about half were happy five years later. But unhappy spouses who stuck it out often did better. About two-thirds were happy five years later." See USA Today article This selfishness in marriage skyrocketted divorce rates. In a homosexual marriage, the union is categorically about the happiness of the couple, not the success of the family because intrinsically, a biological family is not possible. Studies also show that children are happier and psychologically healthier when raised by both biological parents (an impossibility in homosexual couples)(Judith S. Wallerstein, "The Long-Term Effects of Divorce on Children: A Review," Journal of the American Academy of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry 30, no. 3 (May 1991): 358-9). See Catholic site on marriage

Homosexual marriage is a big hit against marriage altogether. In those Scandinavian countries where it has been legal for 10-20 years, marriage rates are dropping. The rates of children born out-of-wedlock are on the rise. The disintegration of the family including trends toward individuality over family is climbing. It isn't about being fair or unfair to individuals, it's about being responsible to our children and protecting them from the crumbling effects of the disintegration oft he family.

In my opinion, wanting to protect marriage between a man and a woman has very little to do with homosexuals. There are some who would claim it is homophobia to deny this "right." It's not. Homosexuals, as all children of God, should be treated with love, gentleness and respect. Tolerating and even loving them as people does not mean condoning and embracing their behavior. Rather than "live and let live", we have a responsibility to family, to commitment, and to God to see that marriage is protected. Please, if you are able to vote in California, vote yes on Proposition 8 and protect marriage and family.