Should same sex partners be allowed to marry? -- yes
Should same sex husbands/wives receive the same benefits as married couples? -- yes
Should Preachers, florist, shop owners of all types and people in general, be forced to perform weddings or cater to those who are homosexual? -- no
Is homosexuality a sin? -- yes
So now that I've lost all my christian/conservative readers, let me explain my thoughts.
I say same sex couples should be allowed to legally marry in every state in America. The reason is quite simple. They deserve the say rights as straight couples according to the Constitution. That seems to have been the question in the first place. Should they be allowed to marry. Not, if it was right or wrong. Simply, do they have a Constitutional right to do it. Every citizen in the United States has the same rights...not just straight people. Everyone. Plain and simple.
Should they receive the same benefits as straight married couples? Of course! If those who are in a same sex marriage have to follow the same rules that straight couples do, then why wouldn't they be allowed the benefits? If they are tax paying, hard working, and law abiding legal citizens of the United States, then why on earth would they not get the same benefits? Aren't they humans, too?
I do not believe anyone should be forced to do something they feel goes against they morals or beliefs. If a preacher does not want to marry a homosexual couple, then they should be able to decline just as they do with straight couples. I am a massage therapist. I have the right to refuse treatment to anyone -- gay, straight, white, black, rich, or poor. That is my right. I will not ever treat someone who I feel is a threat to me or my beliefs. I will not be forced to do so. If a florist does not want to provide flowers for a gay wedding, then she/he should not feel threatened if they don't. That's ridiculous. That's over the line.
Is homosexuality a sin? Yes, indeed. It is most definitely spoken about in the Bible, as being a sin...but so is getting drunk, lying, cheating, anger, divorce, adultery, taking the Lord's name in vain, women praying without a head covering, murder, not honoring our parents... the list goes on and on. Technically there are 613 commands in the Old Testament alone. Even more in the New Testament! I can guarantee every one of us has failed in keeping them all! I certainly have. Do I believe being gay will keep a person out of Heaven. I don't think so. Only denying God will keep a person from going to Heaven. If you have confessed your sins and accepted Jesus as your Savior...truly accepted...then, I believe you will go to Heaven. Do I think everyone...including homosexuals...will answer for their sins? Absolutely!!! I believe we will be held accountable for each one but I know God is a loving God and forgives our sins. Jesus said, "Those without sin -- cast the first stone". I can't do that, can you? I didn't think so. Matthew 22:34-40, says this...
34 Hearing that Jesus had silenced the Sadducees, the Pharisees got together. 35 One of them, an expert in the law, tested him with this question: 36 “Teacher, which is the greatest commandment in the Law?”
37 Jesus replied: “‘Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind.’ 38 This is the first and greatest commandment. 39 And the second is like it: ‘Love your neighbor as yourself.’ 40 All the Law and the Prophets hang on these two commandments.”
Jesus said "Love your neighbor as yourself". He didn't mean to love them only if they were straight/gay, black/white, rich/poor, or only if we feel like it , look the way we think they should, or do what we think is right. He said to LOVE THEM ALL. Do I condone homosexuality? Absolutely not, however, it is not my place to judge others. I think we should do what Jesus said to do and leave the judging up to God.