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Myths and Facts about Proposition 8
MYTH: Proposition 8 enshrines discrimination in our Constitution.
FACT: Proposition 8 does not discriminate against gays; it simply restores the meaning of marriage and protects it as an essential institution that has benefited mankind since the beginning of time. Every culture in the world understands that marriage is between a man and a woman. Californians from all walks of life and ethnic backgrounds, whether religious or not, agree that marriage is between a man and a woman.
Proposition 8 does not take away any rights from gay and lesbian domestic partners. Gays and lesbians in California can already enjoy all the legal rights and benefits of marriage. The California Family Code says, “domestic partners shall have all the rights, protections and benefits” of married spouses. There are NO exceptions to this. Proposition 8 will not change that.
MYTH: Allowing gay couples to legally marry does not affect anyone else.
FACT: The narrow decision of the State Supreme Court effectively renders all civil marriage meaningless and will result in tremendous confusion for children. The state Education Code (§51890) requires that teachers instruct children as young as kindergartners about marriage. If the gay marriage ruling becomes permanent, teachers will have little choice but to teach young children there is no difference between gay marriage and traditional marriage.
We should not accept a court decision that results in public school teachers teaching our kids that gay marriage is acceptable. That is an issue for parents to discuss with their children according to their own values and beliefs. It should not be forced on us against our will.
MYTH: This proposition is the work of right wing radicals and extremists to attack the rights of gays.
FACT: Proposition 8 is supported by a broad range of organizations and individuals, including faith leaders representing virtually every faith in California – and those who subscribe to no faith at all. People from every walk of life believe that marriage is between a man and a woman. Over 1.1 million Californians signed the petitions to put Proposition 8 on the ballot.
If gay marriage advocates want to change the definition of marriage, they should have to put a ballot measure before the voters to do so. This has never happened. Instead, they have gone behind the backs of voters and convinced four activist judges in San Francisco to redefine marriage for all of society. That is the wrong approach.
Proposition 8 does not interfere with gays living the lifestyle they choose. However, while gays can live as they want, they should not have the right to redefine marriage for the rest of society.
MYTH: The majority of the State Supreme Court said that gay marriage is a “right”, so the rest of us should leave the issue alone.
FACT: Ultimately, the legal meaning of marriage is up to the people to decide. Four judges on the Supreme Court declared that gay marriage is a “right” because the traditional definition of marriage did not expressly appear in the state Constitution itself. Proposition 8 overturns the court’s flawed decision by amending the state Constitution to include the common-sense definition of marriage that was previously approved by over 61% of the voters (Proposition 22, enacted in 2000, “Only marriage between a man and a woman is valid or recognized in California”).