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Letter: Vote yes on marriage

As I drive around Willmar, I am noticing some signs that urge a "no" vote on the Marriage Amendment, even one on a church lawn. Don't limit the freedom to marry, the signs add. A current "Vote No" telephone script targeting seniors suggests "I'm a person of faith. One of the values important to me is to treat people the way I would want to be treated. This amendment is hurtful to so many people, which is why I'm voting no. What do you think about that?"

Since this does target seniors and purports to be from a "person of faith," we should understand what the Bible has to say on this topic. For Bible-believing Christians, "principled disagreement" with homosexual marriage comes down to the Garden of Eden standard of one man and one woman joined by God to become "one flesh."(Genesis 1:27, 2-24) They further cite the Apostle Paul's condemnation of homosexuality in the New Testament (1st Corinthians 6:9-10) as proof that the Bible stands in opposition to same-sex marriage. As a further warning, in Galatians 6-7, Paul writes "Do not be deceived: God cannot be mocked."

So why do we need this amendment anyway? We already have the Defense of Marriage Act. It is needed because right now, attempts are being made in Minnesota's courts and in the Legislature to redefine marriage or change its definition altogether. If activist judges or politicians were to succeed in redefining marriage in Minnesota in the future, there would be profound consequences for religious organizations, individuals, and small businesses -- and for society itself.

Contrary to what some people think, so-called same-sex "marriage" would not exist in the law alongside traditional marriage; as if it were a different expression of the same marriage institution they have always known. Marriage will be redefined for everyone. Our historic understanding of marriage as the union of one man and one woman would be replaced by a new legal definition of marriage as the union of two adults regardless of gender. So please vote yes and reinforce not redefine marriage as it's been since the beginning.

Gary Swenson