“Marriage that unites a man and a woman with each other and any children born from their union is the same reality that has been recognized by every society, culture and religion,” he explained on Friday. “The state and religions recognized that reality differently according to their different competencies.”
“The state recognizes it because there is a distinct public interest that coincides with the right of a child to be born into a united family. In addition, the Catholic Church recognizes it as a sacrament.”
In his remarks to CNA before Monday's hearing, May also criticized the concept of religious freedom put forth by proponents of SB 1140.
The bill “creates a perception that churches are insulated from the consequences of redefining marriage – which is not true,” he said.
While clergy would not be forced to perform homosexual ceremonies, May warned that religious institutions and individuals would have no protection from more likely threats – like being forced to rent facilities for these ceremonies, or offer services like wedding photography and catering.
The protection of clergy, May said on Monday, is “in there to use in a campaign slogan down the road – (to say) that the law 'protects churches.'” In this way, the bill “creates a false perception that can be used politically, to mislead the voters on the consequences of redefining marriage.”
In a press release promoting his introduction of SB 1140, Senator Mark Leno predicted the judicial overturning of the traditional-marriage law known as Proposition 8, saying it was “only a matter of time before same-sex couples in California will again have the freedom to marry.”
But if this occurs, May warned, children will lose out – bearing the consequences of a political move that shortchanges their rights in favor of adults' personal desires.
“What is happening,” he explained, “is a redefinition of what marriage is, turning it into nothing more than the public recognition of a committed relationship between adults. It removes from the law any connection between marriage, children, mothers, and fathers.”
“Marriage is the only institution that unites kids with their moms and dads,” May observed. “If marriage is redefined to accommodate same-sex couples, there will be no institution in the law that does that.”
Updated on May 2, 2012 at 11:34 MST. Adds information on the outcome of the Senate committee vote in paragraph three.
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