Kansas Republicans have reached a new low in their campaign against marriage equality.
HB 2320, which was introduced just before Valentine’s day and has several GOP co-sponsors, would prevent the state from recognizing same-sex marriages… which are referred to in the bill as “parody” marriages.
Another bill, HB 2321, would create “elevated marriage” for straight couples while making it harder for them to get divorced.
The Wichita Eagle notes that the bills were submitted “months after voters elected the state’s first openly gay lawmakers” and just before an LGBTQ non-discrimination bill was set to be introduced.
As you’d expect, the Republican sponsor doesn’t have good arguments for why same-sex marriages shouldn’t “count” as much as his own.
“Their marriage probably doesn’t affect me — their union or whatever you want to call it. But in my opinion, they’re trying to force their beliefs on society,” said Rep. Randy Garber, a Sabetha Republican and the bill’s lead sponsor.
Tom Witt, director of the gay rights group Equality Kansas, said the legislation represents the “most vile, hateful and disrespectful legislation” he has seen in 14 years as a lobbyist. The sponsors should be ashamed of themselves, he said.
“Every year, we see bills that restrict, remove, and limit the rights of LGBT Kansans, but never have we seen this level of extremist vitriol laid out in legislative language. These bills combined are 18 pages of insults and name calling,” Witt said.
“I don’t believe myself to be a bigot. I’m Christian and I love people. I believe you should love everybody, but I believe you should also take a stand on what you believe, lovingly,” Garber said.
He loves people. He loves them so much, he wants to take away the rights gay couples have so they can suffer just a little more. (It’s what Jesus wanted.)
The only way gay people would be “enforcing” their beliefs on society is if they were requiring everyone to have a same-sex marriage — and they’re not.
Garber’s hypocrisy is apparent. Anyone alive in ancient Israel might consider marriages without concubines or a dowry of two goats and a camel to be “parody marriages,” too. So are many shotgun celebrity marriages that end in a matter of hours, but no one is trying to enforce a law prohibiting them from getting married.
As the old adage goes, “If you don’t like gay marriage, then don’t get gay married.” It’s really as simple as that.
(Screenshot via YouTube)