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Home | LIST OF LETTERS as published by the Bellingham Herald since August of 1995. | Nonviolent Protest won't work against Saddam | Bush right with stance on Iraq | Where does domination of those who disagree with U.S. end? | Election policy complaints raised against county auditor | Help buy school supplies for kids in need | Religion belongs in minds and hearts, not government | Pause to give thanks to those who protect us | Use nonviolent methods to change government | Urge senators to help Vietnamese find peace | Letter writer Sheila Richardson | Former G-P employees have found success in new fields | Appreciation for three sergeants who gave lives | Domestic partnerships help prevent spread of AIDS | Donate to help victims of Sept. 11 attacks | LETTER TO COLIN POWELL | B.C. should be working to protect own air shed | Another View: County displays tolerance | *Anti-bullying laws must cover sexual orientation* | Canada's complaints about SE2 hypocritical | *Gay man's appointment to AIDS office shows openness* | Skeletons in our Closet | Protecting communities' health must remain a priority | *Scouts can accommodate drag queens* | WE CAN WORK IT OUT | *Bush must protect civil rights, unite divided nation* | gamble on DIVERSITY | *United Way, Boy Scouts improve lives; give to both* | *UNITED WAY, Thank you * | Lighthouse Mission helps those who have fallen | THE DIVINE HAWKS (Vietnamese Marines) | *AIDS Memorial Quilt* | *Stable relationships advantageous for society* | SECRETARY OF THE NAVY (USS Cole) | THE MOVING WALL, Vietnam War Memorial | *UNITED WAY II (Boy Scouts)* | *UNITED WAY (Boy Scouts)* | Protect democracy and Lummi tribal traditions | Americans, Vietnamese gave up much in war | *Fairness Demands Boy Scouts Measure the Morals of all Members* | *Dr. Laura, Supporters Encourage Intolerance* | Science must not Trample Cultural Rights | Country must accept Senate's Verdict | *Urge leaders to protect all people* | Give a child a Christmas present | *Let People Choose their own Paths* | Gift of Microscope will help Community | *Gay Children need Support, not Criticism* | Lummis Face Difficult Task | *Explain Facts to Political Party* | Freedom of Speech Assists Government | THANKS FOR THE SUPPORT | Urges Financial Support for Mt. Baker Theater | *Society Needs Stable Relationships* | *God's Messengers Add Bias to Bible* | Senior Center provides vital community service | Help Support Toys for Tots | Mount Baker Theatre a Passageway to the Future | Mt Baker must get Lean, Mean | SUPORT URGED FOR WHATCOM LAND TRUST | *PROVIDE SAFE, SECURE EMPLOYMENT FOR ALL* | *SEXUAL MINORITIES DESERVE EQUAL RIGHTS* | *HALT CAMPAIGN AGAINST SAME-SEX MARRIAGES* | LOST VOTES UNDERMINE SYSTEM'S INTEGRITY | OFFERS RULES FOR LATE-TERM ABORTIONS | DISCRIMINATION THRU QUOTAS IS WRONG | *CHOOSE WHICH VALUES YOU WILL ADHERE TO* | *DON'T DENY GOD'S WILL* | *AIDS IS NOT A HOMOSEXUAL DISEASE* | Abortion, Welfare Stands are Unjust | *DON'T TEACH TWO SETS OF STANDARDS* | *EXPAND DEFINITION OF FAMILY* | *LACK OF TAX DEDUCTION HURTS KIDS* | *MARITAL LAW ILL SUITED FOR SAME-SEX MARRIAGE* | DARWIN FISH IS THE WALKING CATFISH | *SOME LEGISLATORS TARGET THE WRONG ENEMY* | *LET HOMOSEXUALS DEVELOP SAME TRADITIONS* | *ALL MARRIAGES SHOULD BE HONORED* | *LESBIAN COMMUNITY MAKES CONTRIBUTIONS* | *OFFER MEDICAL BENEFITS INDISCRIMINATELY* | *DON'T SIGN PETITION FOR BIASED I-166* | *I-166, I-167 PROMOTE CULTURAL GENOCIDE* | BIOLOGICAL DECISIONS ARE A WOMAN'S DECISION | LIST | DONATIONS URGED FOR SCHOOLKIDS
sheilas-letters
*ALL MARRIAGES SHOULD BE HONORED*

Published in the Bellingham Herald on 4 February, 1996

A story in the Jan. 11 Herald, Page B1) stated that several
groups were going to introduce legislation that would ban same-sex marriages.

Marriage is a religious ceremony. The government has no
constitutional right to validate one marriage over another.

The government has compelling reasons to legally recognize a sexual relationship between consenting adults.

Legal: The government does not recognize unmarried couples as having any legal standing. To attain any legal standing the couple must enter into legal contracts that the courts may not recognize.

Hygiene: When a couple enters into a monogamous sexual
relationship, the proability of contracting a sexually transmitted disease is greatly reduced. The government has a financial interest in reducing the proliferation of such diseases.

Humanitarian: When a domestic partner is disabled, the courts' responsibility is to act in the best interests of the disabled. If the courts deny a person's partner the right to be his or her primary caregiver, then the courts and our society have failed in their responsibility.

The government has no constitutional right to deny legal
recognition to two consenting adults who have been married in a religious ceremony.

No religious or political group has a compelling interest in putting such a union asunder.

Sheila L Richardson
Bellingham WA

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