OK To Civil Unions, Not ‘Don’t Ask Or Tell’

Rick Hamada
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Wednesday - December 29, 2010

I have engaged in and witnessed the debate surrounding same-sex marriage, civil unions and reciprocal beneficiaries. The rancor, divisiveness and volume of both sides of the issue have eroded the general population’s attention and patience. Communities are pitted against one another, families have been splintered and the future of our civilization (reportedly) has been placed in doubt with either the opposition or affirmation of gay relationships.

In the grand scheme of things, whether or not a same-sex couple can fall in love and codify their relationship before their family and friends pales in comparison to other issues before us.

There is a relentless desire by our enemies to destroy our way of life. Not only our way of life, but our collective lives, as well. As we speak, there is planning, collaboration, training and more planning on different ways to damage and ultimately eradicate us. This is an assault that will never end, and we must be prepared to do whatever is necessary to proactively protect our allies and ourselves. This should be job No. 1.

The meltdown of our global and national economies must be stabilized and preserved. There are solutions if the powers that be are willing to make the difficult but necessary decisions to provide a healthy environment for entrepreneurs, small businesses and larger corporations to not only survive, but to turn a profit. Revision of tax policies, relaxation of oppressive regulations and the cessation of non-essential government spending are the obvious keys. But will we actually see fundamental changes to the way we have been doing business in recent years? It’s not a question of if we change, it must be an issue of when.

Sure, there are a myriad of other topics you could triage into the discussion. Nuclear unrest in North/South Korea; nuclear issues with Iran, Pakistan and India; and uneasy alliances between China/Russia and Russia/Venezuela, just to name a few.

In other words, we are facing situations with cataclysmic consequence.

Does the fact a same-sex couple wants to have their relationship recognized by the very community in which they live, contribute to and steward rise to this level of communal concern?

For some, yes, it does. For me, no it doesn’t.

Let me clarify and reiterate my advocacy of government getting out of the marriage business. Relationships - and their recognition - should be a matter of individual concern with affiliated civil and religious organizations determining the criterion for said relationships.

However, until that elusive day comes, what should be done? Government should maintain that marriage is reserved for a man and a woman because of the implications of its present role in our lives. I would hope the efforts to remove government from defining and determining acceptable and unacceptable relationships would receive as much attention and debate as the un-resolvable question of “either-or.”

There is one caveat to this discussion and it pertains to the U.S. military. President Obama recently signed into law the repeal of “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell.” This is a grave mistake. Social experimentation has no place in the military. Any action that potentially detracts from the focus of men and women in harm’s way is irresponsible.

The military and its operation is not the same as our everyday society. Lives are literally at stake and even the most fleeting moment of distraction, second-guessing or division amongst troops hold great consequence.

Perhaps there will be a repeal of this law in the near future. I hope so.

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