TUESDAY
February 29, 2000
volume 11, no. 42
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NEWS & VIEWS     Acknowledgments
Articles provided through Catholic World News and Church News at Noticias Eclesiales and International Dossiers, Daily Dispatches and Features at ZENIT International News Agency. CWN, NE and ZENIT are not affiliated with the Daily CATHOLIC but provide this service via e-mail to the Daily CATHOLIC Monday through Friday.

COLORADO ARCHBISHOP SUPPORTS SAME-SEX MARRIAGE BAN, HATE-CRIME LAW

    DENVER (CWNews.com) - The archbishop of Denver said in a column in Sunday's Rocky Mountain News newspaper that Colorado's Catholics support new hate-crime legislation and a proposal to ban same-sex marriages.

    Archbishop Charles Chaput said the reason for supporting the hate-crime measure was because "hatred aggravates the evil of a crime." He added, "A moral difference exists between attacking persons for their money, and attacking them because they're Asian, or Jewish, or homosexual .... Whatever the content of a person's behavior, he or she never loses the right to be free from violence motivated by hatred. The law can legitimately seek to ensure that."

    The archbishop then went on to say that the law should protect the status of marriage and family in society, and could legitimately exclude other types of relationships from sharing in that status. "Marriage, as we traditionally understand it, is the foundation stone of our culture," he wrote. "It's the fundamental community which gives life to the rest of society."

    "The unique legal status of marriage exists largely to protect the children who depend on marriage to thrive," he said, adding that the nature of marriage itself, regardless of the intent of individual married couples, is "fundamentally ordered to the bearing and rearing of the next generation."

    Citing the evidence of recent history, Archbishop Chaput said that when traditional marriages dissolve, children suffer, and said the well-being and success of children depends on intact, two-parent families. He added that this doesn't mean that blended or single-parent families are doomed to fail. "Our public response should focus on easing those pressures and reinforcing our support for marriage, not redefining it or establishing parallel structures which erode marriage by sapping its special status," he said.

    "It will do little good to pay pious lip service to marriage if we then create alternative arrangements with similar legal privileges," he added. "Doing so might keep 'marriage' in our cultural vocabulary, but it would effectively diminish its importance -- maybe not intentionally; maybe not immediately ... but irreversibly."

          

February 29, 2000
volume 11, no. 42
NEWS & VIEWS

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