Abuse of the Constitution | VailDaily.com

Abuse of the Constitution

Matt Zalaznick

An amendment restricting the most intimate personal beliefs of Americans does not belong in the U.S. Constitution.

The visionary document that created American democracy out of European tyranny has been used throughout the country’s history to protect or expand civil rights – such as granting freedom of speech, ensuring the right to bear arms, prohibiting unlawful search and seizure by police, abolishing slavery.

The Constitution has never been used to eliminate civil rights. But that’s the intention of President Bush and other backers of the gay marriage ban, known in its current form as the Musgrave Amendment after its sponsor, U.S. Rep. Marilyn Musgrave of Colorado.

This undemocratic amendment, with its undertow of discrimination and intolerance, would pollute one of the most important documents in Western society.

What’s next, an amendment allowing only certain Americans freedom of speech? Actually, an amendment ensuring the rights of homosexuals to marry would be more in line with the tone of the Constitution.

The “slippery slope” arguments of supporters of the gay marriage ban are fallacies. Some proponents have argued that permitting homosexual marriage would harm American society, leading to bigamy, child molestation and societal depravity.

This argument is simply absurd. Bigamists, for example, are often enough devout men with half a dozen wives, not homosexuals lording over same-sex harems. Besides, American society has not lacked for depravity and evil-doers during hundreds of years of solely heterosexual marriage.

Backers of the ban also argue that homosexual marriage should be prohibited because it would depopulate America, as homosexual couples cannot reproduce. Well, homosexual couples can adopt the children who are abused and abandoned by heterosexual couples when they implode or have children long before they are ready to care for them. And plenty of heterosexual couples – married ones – do not or cannot have children themselves.

Regardless of whether Americans support gay marriage, the Constitution deserves better treatment than to be used as a weapon by one group of Americans in a crusade to impose their social agenda upon others.

That’s the stuff of TV talk shows, attack ads and the 24-hour news channels, not a document that has improved the lives of hundreds of millions of Americans and inspired the spread of freedom throughout the world.

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