On Nov. 6, Maryland voters will decide if they want to change the definition of marriage from one man and one woman to include same-sex couples. The implications will be staggering if the change is implemented.
Same sex couples already receive many of the same benefits as married couples in Maryland. Presently, significant benefits are granted to domestic partners, including same-sex partners. They receive health care facility visitation, health care decision-making, ability to adopt children, state employee health benefits, exemption from state inheritance taxes, and many more. It is not necessary to redefine marriage in order to provide benefits to same-sex couples.
Same-sex marriage is not the same discrimination as the discrimination fought against by African-Americans during the civil rights movement.
Additionally, the best interest of children needs to be considered in this redefinition of marriage. Parents are the primary educators of their children and this is especially true in matters of sexuality. If Maryland redefines marriage will this make way in schools to openly discuss homosexuality with children? If a parent disagrees with this teaching, will they be able to opt-out their children or will this be considered an intolerant request?
Changing the legal definition of marriage to include same-sex couples will NOT provide the desired tolerance but rather a storm of litigation and the dissolution of a foundational institution that has been the bedrock of civilization.
Since 1998, voters in 31 states have endorsed the traditional definition of marriage in state ballot referendums. Maryland, continue with what is good and right for our state and vote NO to Question 6.
Mary Frances Tracy