You basically are saying the word marriage is now officially changed to mean what you want it to be? Thanks for making my argument for me.
I dislike it when people speak for me. I dislike it even further when they completely misunderstand or misrepresent what I have said. Your interpretation is seriously flawed. For starters I never said that the word has changed officially, and secondly I never said I wanted the meaning of the word to change.
Let me give you an example once again.
If I told you that white is actually black and black is actually white would you believe my definition of what that is? And furthermore, 99.9% of the people knew I was wrong but 4 outa 7 judges sided with me...does it still change the definition of those words or colors?
A few things. First of all, your example has no relationship to this discussion because the meanings of the words black and white have never changed (even if their linguistic representation has.) As I demonstrated, the meaning of the word marriage has changed over the thousands of years that it has been practiced. So the two are NOT parallel. Secondly I would not believe your "definition" because that is at best a poor (and at worst a complete disregard for) understanding of ontology. Meaning isn't informed by the opinions of others. The "definition" of words is as I said a relationship between the "sign" in this case marriage, and the "signifier." People identify signifiers through internal and external processes; not by simply being told what they are. If I told you a cat was a large blue metallic object used for compacting human feces and you had no prior knowledge of cats; you would accept that definition. If you had already established a connection between the word "cat" and the creatures that the word represents you would not accept my definition.
A reasoned aproach means you look the way things are..not what you want them to be.
That's extremely fatalistic of you... of course you are once again wrong in your understanding of what I am saying. I don't WANT marriage to include homosexual couples; to be honest I have no vested interest in the matter. I'm not gay. However, I participate in this discussion because my UNDERSTANDING of the word marriage is one that is based on a firm grasp of history, ontology and human rights, and I think that an informed opinion should be shared.
To simply dismiss history and suddenly decide the word is not what everyone else thinks it is not very productive in trying to make your case.
Ok, now I'm starting to wonder if you actually read what I have been saying. When did I dismiss history? I actually used history to make my point. If you look at history (and not the selective fashion which SoCaliente_1 employs... more on that later) you will see that the MEANING of the word marriage is a dynamic one. It has meant different things for different people in different places at different times. It's meaning has changed for the same people in the same place over time. (For example, it was understood as the only legitimate situation for couples to live together not fifty years ago in the same culture we are for the most part all living in.) History clearly proves that the meaning of marriage is a dynamic one; and I have USED (not dismissed, which you have done) history to make my point.
Moreso I'm not saying the word means one thing or another. The word means different things to different people. For you it means a heterosexual union of consenting adults. For me the meaning is different. All I have done (repeatedly) is prove quite clearly that the word itself has not remained static in it's meaning.
why SHOULD the english language be altered? there's no logical reason.
Are you serious? The english language (like any other) is undergoing constant alteration. Take for example my signature. See that last bit in the funny text? That's OLD ENGLISH, the english language used a mere couple of centuries before Webster's places the origins of marriage. Even today language is vastly different than it was 100 or 500 years ago. The word "Merkin" isn't found in some dictionaries, "thain" isn't found in any, "gay" means something entirely different than 50 years ago (in addition to retaining it's 'original' value) and the list goes on. Language changes because it is merely a tool for expressing ideas.
It is a process where we use SIGNS
to describe SIGNIFIERS
. It changes not as a result of a conscious project to redefine things (despite the best efforts of advertisers) but as a result of the inherent fluidity of human understanding. It would be highly illogical if language never changed, as our understanding of the world is constantly under revision.
why is "civil unions" for non man-woman, or any other "alternative" unions objectionble?
Because some people don't like being segregated. Not that complicated.
I find this subject to be no more than a "I want what I want, the way I want it" and nothing more, even if it means changing the english language.
Since when are rights and dignity equated with the whining you describe? Would you categorize Rosa Park's indignation at being segregated in the same fashion? I think here your true prejudice is coming to bare: you clearly (not only disagree with homosexual unions) but devalue their claims based on your personal opinions of homosexuality. How else can you explain people struggling to express THEIR LOVE FOR ONE ANOTHER as simply whining?
Leave the definition alone. it hasn't hurt or bothered anyone since the 14th century. "civil unions" should be fine.
Ok, here's what I don't get. Words aren't static (as I have gone great lengths to prove here and elsewhere.) In fact, ANYONE who has studied philology, modern languages, history, or ontology will probably back me up on that. Definitions change through social processes. Where you see people interfering with the natural stability of language; entire schools of thought and the entire course of written history lead me to see that you are actually interfering with the NATURAL EVOLUTION of language.
Your last five words really perplex me. Who are you to say what is satisfying for other people? Lets ignore the definition of marriage for a second. If you couldn't MARRY the person you loved because of some legal obstacle, would you be fine with some other arrangement? What you have to understand is that the people who seek the right to marry homosexual partners have an entirely different understanding of the term marriage, and given that understanding; a civil union is unacceptable because it is not the same.