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Why I'll vote against Amendment 2

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By The Staff

Editor:

What is more important? The definition of a marriage or the realities of real families? The second part of Amendment 2: " NO OTHER LEGAL UNION that is treated as marriage or the SUBSTANTIAL EQUIVALIENT thereof shall be valid or recognized" will be very detrimental to families, many with children, involving unmarried straight couples.

Many senior citizens cannot remarry without losing their deceased spouse's pension and social security benefits. But they do want a partner to share expenses, relieve the loneliness or be a companion.

Several Florida communities, including Gainesville and Broward County, have domestic partner registries. These allow unmarried couples some of the same rights as married couples such as hospital visitation and the ability to make medical decisions or funeral arrangements for their partner. Others can now provide group health insurance benefits for household members. This benefits taxpayers if the partner cannot afford separate insurance.

After the amendment passed in Michigan and Kentucky, despite promises that they wouldn't be affected, civil rights were denied to unmarried couples. Why would anyone vote yes on 2 and take a chance that these existing domestic partnership registries will be found unconstitutional? Why, in a free country, would anyone want to take away civil rights from one group of families just because some of them might be gay? Not all families are headed by a married man and woman. Studies have shown that children benefit more when raised by a couple, gay or straight, than one single parent. We now know that being born gay or hermaphroditic is not a choice.

Tax free churches should not be imposing one Bible verse (while ignoring other taboos) on a secular society composed of many different beliefs and founded by men who believed strongly in the separation of church and state.

Mignon A. Craig

Williston