published Saturday, August 2nd, 2014

Domestic partner ordinance not just a bedroom issue

City Commissioner Chris Anderson speaks to a group from Yes Chattanooga on the front steps of City Hall in this file photo.
City Commissioner Chris Anderson speaks to a group from Yes Chattanooga on the front steps of City Hall in this file photo.
Photo by Tim Barber /Chattanooga Times Free Press.

TIMES ENDORSEMENTS

In Thursday's general election and Democratic primary, the Times endorses:

Governor: John McKamey

U.S. Senator: Terry Adams

3rd District Congress: Mary Headrick

27th District, State House: Eric McRoy

County Mayor: Jim Coppinger

County Commission: District 1 Randy Fairbanks

District 6: John Allen Brooks

District 7: Ezra Maize

District 8: Kenny Smith

District 9: Melinda Bone

General Sessions Court, Division 1: Christie Sell

Juvenile Court: Yolanda Echols Mitchell

Public Defender: Ardena Garth

Criminal Court Clerk: Gwen Tidwell

Board of Education: District 3 Jim Watson

District 5: Karitsa Mosley

District 6: Ballard Scearce Jr.

District 8: David Testerman

District 9: Steve Highlander

Supreme Court Judges: Retain

Domestic Partner Ordinance: For

Vote "for" the Chattanooga Domestic Partnership ordinance on Thursday's ballot.

The ordinance would extend health and other benefits to domestic partners of city workers, something that will make the city more competitive and simply be more fair for same-sex and committed long-term partners.

It also will bring Chattanooga in line with what other cities, counties, states, some private businesses and the U.S. Treasury Department and Internal Revenue Service are moving toward: policies to give same-sex and live-in couples the same tax treatment and benefits as other married couples -- in keeping with the recent U.S. Supreme Court's ruling to overturn the Defense of Marriage Act.

It's true that Tennessee still has on its books a 7-year-old constitutional amendment banning same-sex marriage. But one-by-one, similar rules in the other 30 states that ban it are falling. This one will fall, too. The Supreme Court has spoken, and cities, states and employers who don't want to listen are simply inviting lawsuits. And those lawsuits will cost everybody.

Chattanooga officials have estimated that extending benefits to domestic partners will add less than $170,000 to the city's benefits expense.

Paying for the tea party-leaning Citizens for Government Accountability and Transparency's petition drive to put this question -- which the City Council already had approved on a 5-4 vote -- on the Aug. 7 ballot and then paying for attorneys to argue how the ballot question would be worded has probably cost us taxpayers that much already.

Nineteen states and the District of Columbia already approve of same sex marriage: eight by court decision, eight by state legislatures and three by popular vote.

What about the so-called sanctity of marriage? Any and every marriage has sanctity when the couple believes in it. If anyone puts any further weight on the "sanctity" of wedded unions, just explain divorces.

Marriage has been and is redefined over and over as society's attitudes evolve.

Coverture, where a woman's legal rights and economic identity were subsumed by her husband upon marriage, was commonplace in 19th century America. Interracial marriage was illegal in many U.S. states until a 1967 Supreme Court decision. No-fault divorce has changed the institution of marriage since its introduction in California on Jan. 1, 1970.

Today the majority of Americans support gay marriage. A May 2013 Gallup poll found 53 percent of Americans support gay marriage, and a Vanderbilt poll in May of this year found that even in Tennessee, 49 percent of people said they support same-sex marriage or civil unions. The Vanderbilt poll also found that 62 percent of Tennesseans support health insurance and other employee benefits for gay and lesbian domestic workers in general.

It is time for the definition of marriage to evolve once again.

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aae1049 said...

Blah Blah Blah, it was just 24 months ago that the city of Chattanooga council voted to renege on health insurance benefits for retirees under the color of costs the city could not afford. Fast forward to today, and the city can afford to extend the same health insurance they took from retirees after 25 years of service, and extend the benefit based up same sex.

If the city doesn't have the funds to keep their word to city employees...then where is windfall? The city is guilty of discrimination against older workers.

August 2, 2014 at 12:19 a.m.
conservative said...

Ms.Sohn throws numbers out to support evil.

She says this evil will cost the city LESS than $170,000. Who believes that? She is supporting evil, no matter what the cost.

She cites other states and courts supporting this evil as if that makes this evil acceptable.

She claims that the majority of Americans supports the evil of Homosexual behavior even calling it marriage.

Woe to those who call evil good!

August 2, 2014 at 8:05 a.m.
GaussianInteger said...

No April, the city is guilty of evolving with the times. Plenty of huge, rich, successful companies drop retirees from medical plans once they become eligible for Medicare. Do you honestly believe the costs are the same for a 28-year-old employee versus a 70-year-old retiree? Your "Conservative friends" would crap your pants if the city allowed retirees to stay on the city plan provided they had to pass a property tax increase on residents to pay for the coverage.

August 2, 2014 at 8:23 a.m.
GaussianInteger said...

"She claims that the majority of Americans supports the evil of Homosexual behavior even calling it marriage."

More falsehoods from the document liar, ConMan.

"Fifty percent say the U.S. Constitution's guarantee of equal protection gives gays the right to marry, while 41 percent say it does not.

Beyond the constitutional questions, a record-high 59 percent say they support same-sex marriage, while 34 percent are opposed" -Washington Post

Lie some more ConMan...

August 2, 2014 at 8:26 a.m.
conservative said...

GaussianInteger

Those are sample polls of a miniscule of Americans conducted by the Liberal mess media, proving nothing.

You as usual rush to defend sexual perverts.

Do you really think that God is persuaded by polls anyway?

August 2, 2014 at 10:26 a.m.
conservative said...

GaussianInteger

So, how many Liberal courts have overturned the majority will of states which have passed laws against Homosexuals/sodomites marrying?

Don't be a dupe.

August 2, 2014 at 10:33 a.m.
conservative said...

GaussianInteger

God says no Homosexual, adulterer, or fornicator will inherit the Kingdom of God:

Or do you not know that the unrighteous will not inherit the kingdom of God? Do not be deceived; neither fornicators, nor idolaters, nor adulterers, nor effeminate, nor homosexuals, nor thieves, nor the covetous, nor drunkards, nor revilers, nor swindlers, will inherit the kingdom of God. 1 Corinthians 6:9-10

What say you GaussianInteger?

August 2, 2014 at 10:40 a.m.
aae1049 said...

Guass, you don't know what you are talking about. The retirees health insurance with the city converted to a supplemental to Medicare. They worked for 25 years for the promise of the city. The city takes AWAY the older retirees supplement, and gives the same health insurance to boyfriends and girlfriends of city employees. You are wrong.

August 2, 2014 at 11:26 a.m.
Ki said...

Supplemental health coverage can't be the same as full health coverage. Therefore it would be impossible to take away full, or the normally used term primary health coverage and offer it to present employees as their primary coverage. There are vast differences in both premiums and coverage. As any supplemental health policy only kicks in and pay the difference between what's charged and the percentage covered in the policy contract that's been agreed upon by both the insurance company and the employer.

August 2, 2014 at 7:22 p.m.
GaussianInteger said...

Ki, April has gone down this path before and shown to be wrong. She has done it again today. I don't think she has a clue of what she is talking about when it comes to this "retiree insurance renege".

August 2, 2014 at 9:29 p.m.
Ki said...

Yep, Gauss. I don't think many are fooled anymore and have caught onto the lies. I just came from reading the false praise being heaped on James Mapp. Surely he's smart enough to keep his distance from these types. Destruction of such organizations as the NAACP has always been on their radar. Mr. Mapp should be smart enough to know this.

August 2, 2014 at 10:58 p.m.
ORRMEANSLIGHT said...

+++WE PREACH CHRIST JESUS CRUCIFIED+++

TENNESSEE STATUTE (LAW) RE: LEGAL MARRIAGE:

"(b) The legal union in matrimony of only one (1) man and one (1) woman shall be the only recognized marriage in this state. (c) Any policy, law or judicial interpretation that purports to define marriage as anything other than the historical institution and legal contract between one (1) man and one (1) woman is contrary to the public policy of Tennessee"; Tenn. Code Ann. ' 36 3 113

Too many Liberal Democrats are Scofflaws and utilize sleazy deception and other evil tactics to push their immoral lifestyles onto society. This is an example of the Obamah administration.

Malleus Deum Verum

August 3, 2014 at 1:40 a.m.
ORRMEANSLIGHT said...

+++WE PREACH CHRIST JESUS CRUCIFIED+++

My Dearest Friends: 'Wife', in Hebrew, means 'Woman'!...(female)

My Dearest Friends:'Husband, in Hebrew, means 'Man'...(male)

And, may I say: 'Wife', in Greek, means 'Woman'!...(female)

And, may I say: 'Husband', in Greek, means 'Man'! ...(male)

Capiche? The very next step is to beastiality and a demand to 'legally' allow [humans] to 'marry'dogs, horses, mules, other animals. (And to get them insured at innocent tax-payers expense. They would, of course, be labeled 'CIVIL UNIONS'. Legislated. This is not a joke!

Malleus Deum Verum

August 3, 2014 at 1:41 a.m.
ORRMEANSLIGHT said...

+++WE PREACH CHRIST JESUS CRUCIFIED+++

A Sovereign Nation Has the Right to Reward Individuals Within Unions (Marriages) Who Have the Greatest Expectation to Procreate. [Nations Need Taxpayers]. A Sovereign Nation Has the Right to Deny Reward (Insurance/Tax Write-Offs/Death Benefits to Spouses, etc.)to Individual Unions Which do Not Have the Expectation to Procreate. Also, A Sovereign Nation Has the Right to Discourage Supporting Individuals Who Cost Their Innocent Tax Payers Over $20,000,000,000 [Twenty Billion Dollars] Per Year. The Average Cost to Treat One Case of HIV/AIDS is Over $400,000 [Four Hundred Thousand Dollars Per Lifetime. (Source: Center for Disease Control {CDC} HIV Surveillance Report 2009, Vol 21). So, My Question to You: "Shall We Change The Definition of Husband to Mean Woman, Or, The Definition of Wife to Mean Man? Shall We Do This Even Though These Unions Go Against The Wisdom and Needs of a Sovereign United States of America? This Deadly Chosen Lifestyle is Not to be Forced Upon a Sovereign Nation.

Malleus Deum Verum

August 3, 2014 at 1:46 a.m.
ORRMEANSLIGHT said...

+++WE PREACH CHRIST JESUS CRUCIFIED+++

You must look a little closer.

*** It is in no way a privilege of any U.S. Citizen to change the definition of any word or related institution associated with said word. (Husband=Male, Wife=Female).

*** No protections of U.S. Citizens are denied by maintaining folkways, morays, traditional family values and/or traditions of society.

*** Powers not granted to the federal government by the Constitution, nor prohibited to the States, are reserved to the States or the people.

*** Each state retains its sovereignty, freedom, and independence, and every power, jurisdiction, and right, which is not expressly delegated to the United States, in Congress assembled. (my edit for sake of clarity...no changes to interpretation applied)kwo

Malleus Deum Verum

August 3, 2014 at 1:49 a.m.
ORRMEANSLIGHT said...

+++WE PREACH CHRIST JESUS CRUCIFIED+++

"Once you have been infected with HIV, you will always carry it in your body."

"There is no cure for HIV."

http://www.aids.gov/hiv-aids-basics/just-diagnosed-with-hiv-aids/overview/hiv-positive/

Citizens! Please! Where are your brains???

Do you want your family tax dollars paying from $400,0000.00 to $600,000.000 per infected homosexual who chose a lifestyle Jesus Christ labels an abomination?

Malleus Deum Verum

August 3, 2014 at 2:02 a.m.
ORRMEANSLIGHT said...

The HIV/AIDS Epidemic in Washington, D.C.

[kaiser foundation] Washington, D.C. is the hardest hit by HIV in the United States (U.S.), with an epidemic on par with some developing nations. In D.C., approximately (NOW 3.3%) of the population is living with HIV, which exceeds UNAIDS’ definition of a “generalized” epidemic (having HIV prevalence greater than 1% of the population),3,4 and

D.C. has the highest AIDS diagnosis rate of any state in the U.S.

Third World countries laugh at Washington D.C.: Africa is doing better than they [D.C.] are in the HIV/AIDS category. Yeah, Liberal Democrat Stronghold, D.C. is a great example for the rest of the nation!

August 3, 2014 at 2:19 a.m.
fairmon said...

It will only cost tax payers $170,000 which is not justified. $170,000 here and there equals a property tax increase which is not justified. It is not a moral issue but a fiscal issue. Why does the city need to be more competitive? There is no job or position that is so critical an employee must be retained at all cost. The compensation for government employees already exceeds that of the private sector for like or similar work. The number resigning for other employment of a similar nature is or is near zero. The proposal is another piece of feel good legislation by being liberal with other peoples money. VOTE AGAINST THE PROPOSAL.

August 3, 2014 at 5:04 a.m.
Ki said...

regardless, it started out being a moral issue and only attempts to change took place mid-stream when realized that concept would not go over well with the average citizen.

The issue remains amoral one. That's the foot it started out on/that's what it remains.

August 3, 2014 at 7:49 a.m.
GaussianInteger said...

I think $170,000 is "justified". Chattanooga needs to evolve with the times and the rest of the cities that don't want to resemble Mayberry. The city needs to able to attract the best talent from across the country; gay or straight. I would say the city has spent close to (or even more then) $170,000 with the arguing back and for on this issue and with the August 7th vote.

August 3, 2014 at 8:21 a.m.
fairmon said...

GaussianInteger said...

I think $170,000 is "justified". The city needs to able to attract the best talent from across the country.

The city seems to be doing well in attracting needed talent. There is no justification for spending the additional money to attract or retain any employee in government or the private sector. The loss of any employee due to a lack of the city government's support of a domestic partner will not be a harmful or noticeable loss.

August 3, 2014 at 10:04 a.m.
fairmon said...

VOTE AGAINST THE PROPOSAL unless you would vote for a property tax increase at some point in the future. a couple hundred thousand here and a couple hundred thousand there for this and similar other peoples money legislation by politicians using tax payer money to gain favor and votes will indeed require more tax revenue from some source.

Those making a pitch for rejecting the proposal on moral grounds are just as wrong as those supporting it for other reasons that really make no sense, you cannot legislate morals where there is no harm to others. In this case the harm is unjustified financial support of an unjustified proposal to increase the cost of city government without improving city governance.

This proposal will not improve police and fire protection. It will not improve public works effectiveness. It will not improve parks and recreation facilities. It will not improve administrative functions serving citizens. It will not reduce the attrition rate. It will not upgrade and improve education efforts. What government service will this ridiculous increased cost to tax payers improve?

August 3, 2014 at 10:11 a.m.
fairmon said...

VOTE AGAINST THE PROPOSAL. Those that resist this ridiculous proposal on moral grounds could solve the problem by supporting the elimination of the over 1000 laws that discriminate against those for their own reason remain single. Is such discrimination the right and moral thing to do? Why has the government passed laws that give people an incentive to marry? Where is the outrage regarding the discrimination against the minority in the case of singles? Why should singles pay a higher tax rate than those that marry and why does the gap widen when those married decide to have a house full of rug rats? Why should singles be required to help support those opting for marriage and kids? Why are those preferring to rent required to help those preferring to buy a house? The immoral list of discrimination against singles is long, long standing and increasing. Eliminate that discrimination and take away the incentive for such ridiculous initiatives as domestic partner benefits.

Why should government decide what the "American dream" is for everyone? Why not allow each to have their own American dream without incentives and government influence? Individual freedom and liberty was the initial American dream but some have chosen to define it differently. It seems the politicos have decided it is a domestic setting of two people that own their domicile with cars for each, cable TV and a cell phone with government controlled and supported health care.

August 3, 2014 at 10:26 a.m.
sagoyewatha said...

PAM SOHN: If, as you write, "Domestic Partner Ordinance Not Just A Bedroom Issue," why the big headline saying that? Why the photo of the gay politician preaching to a small group of an organization, some of whom are known to be gay and others known to be consumers of care in the mental health industry? You do know it is a lie to say "53 percent of Americans support gay marriage" when the correct statement is that 53 percent of the people polled said they supported gay marriage. That applies to your lie that "even in Tennessee, 49 percent of people said they support same-sex marriage or civil unions." What the hell do you mean "EVEN IN TENNESSEE?" Is there something you don't like about Tennessee, are the people of this state not up to your standards of brilliance? If so, why not go someplace else and give us all a break? Now, I will answer a question you asked in this editorial, one I am surprised you did not learn during your exhaustive and premium incomplete education, "JUST EXPLAIN DIVORCES." A divorce is a healthy adjustment. The chief cause of divorce is MARRIAGE, a device used by organized religion in an attempt to control people's sexual behavior..It is not working out, as most issues of control do not. The nature of human relationships is that they begin and they end. All of them do. They end in unpleasant ways, like death, desertion or divorce. There are no pleasant ways. If anyone thinks so, please name it. I have explained this to you, but I can't make you understand it.

August 3, 2014 at 10:32 a.m.
fairmon said...

Unfortunately many that say they support gay marriage really don't but they think it makes them appear to be more enlightened and sophisticated. Why would people in TN. want to emulate the great Granola state of CA., so named due to being full of nuts, fruits and flakes. Pseudo sophistication is a sad thing but stressful as it may be some people live that way seeking to be liked by those they encounter.

August 3, 2014 at 11:16 a.m.
ORRMEANSLIGHT said...

+++WE PREACH CHRIST JESUS CRUCIFIED+++

fairmon said...

"VOTE AGAINST THE PROPOSAL unless you would

vote for a property tax increase at some point in the future.

a couple hundred thousand here and a couple hundred thousand there

for this and similar other peoples money legislation by politicians using tax payer money to gain favor and votes will indeed require more tax revenue from some source."

I do so much agree with fairmon!

Little-by-little, deceptively, within the Occult, the Chattanooga Homosexuals will Tax Innocent Citizens to death! Property, Sewage Taxes, etc.

They want Us to pay hundres of thousands of dollars to them for their (what has been labeled) THE HOMOSEXUAL CULTURE OF DEATH ...'They' say that.

City of Chattanooga! Do Not Be Fooled into paying $400,000 to $600,000 per lifetime per HIV/AIDS Infected Homosexual Patient.

Malleus Deum Verum

August 3, 2014 at 12:41 p.m.
ORRMEANSLIGHT said...

+++WE PREACH CHRIST JESUS CRUCIFIED+++

African-Americans and other disenfranchised people among the 'so

called' minority populations will bear the pain of the burden of this deceptive attempt to raise future taxes.

The poor of Chattanooga Tennessee cannot afford the increased taxes that will gradually be levied against them to support the 'going bankrupt' Hospice Centers treating the Homosexual HIV/AIDS Patients. Many other harms to society wil occur as a result if this ordinance is passed in favor of the part of the Homosexual Community that is infected with HIV/AIDS, The 'Super-Bug' Gonorrhea (very often much worse than Homosexual's who have HIV/AIDS), Opportunistic Infections passed on even by Movie Theatre seats where an infected person has been seated, etc., etc., etc.

WAKE UP! CHATTANOOGA! DON'T BE DECEIVED AGAIN, AND, AGAIN, AND AGAIN!

Malleus Deum Verum

August 3, 2014 at 12:51 p.m.
GaussianInteger said...

Thank God the slim minority of Chattanoogans believe as you, Orr. You are as nutty as a fruit cake.

August 3, 2014 at 6:52 p.m.
GaussianInteger said...

"Gonorrhea from a movie seat"? Is that the reason you give your wife for contracting it?

August 3, 2014 at 6:54 p.m.
Ki said...

Gauss, that last post was funny as he'll! I was trying to remember who Orr reminded me of. Then it came to me. That fruity street preacher from many years ago who, as many suspected, turned out to be a pervert, Dan martino--ithink was the name. He too was obsessed with sex, prostitutes and porn because he was a frequent customer.

August 3, 2014 at 8:54 p.m.
conservative said...

God's word very plainly tells us that He destroyed Sodom and Gomorrah for their sexual sins most notably Homosexuality/sodomy.

just as Sodom and Gomorrah and the surrounding cities, which likewise indulged in sexual immorality and pursued unnatural desire, serve as an example by undergoing a punishment of eternal fire Jude 1:7 ESV

How will God judge Chattanooga if it endorses sexual immorality?

August 5, 2014 at 1:58 p.m.
ORRMEANSLIGHT said...

+++WE PREACH CHRIST JESUS CRUCIFIED+++

conservative,

That indeed is the primary question. And, may I add?...Selah!

Malleus Deum Verum

August 5, 2014 at 10:43 p.m.
dthoward64 said...

If you're going to pull out the Sodom and Gomorrah story, at least get your facts correct. The sin they committed was over being accepting of outsiders. They were inhospitable to strangers. Please re-read your Bibles! Do your research!

August 7, 2014 at 2:52 p.m.
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