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New York’s vague new marriage licenses will lead to animal marriages

Sunday, August 21, 2011

The town clerk of Ledyard, N.Y. — Rose Marie Belforti — has finally responded to the controversy over her recent decision to not sign marriage licenses for same-sex couples.

Rose Marie Belforti

In an exclusive interview with Focus On The Family’s Citizen Link, Belforti talks about her recent decision, and wondered if there was another agenda that would result in allowing marriage between non-humans.

Though she claims in her Citizen Link interview that “if (reporters) want to talk to me over the phone, I would love to do that,” it must be remembered that this is the same woman who, when contacted by the New York paper the Auburn Citizen for comment on her decision, stated “that’s not your business” before rudely hanging up the phone.

Thus, everything that she says must be taken with a grain of salt; for if you only want to be interviewed by a “friendly” organization, it seems as though you don’t want to answer the hard questions.

When asked by Citizen Link why she decided to not issue marriage licenses to gay and lesbian couples, she stated that, “I am a Christian. God is the final word. He is the Truth, and I believe what the Bible says. When I considered this, God was there with me and I really knew inside, without waver, that this is not right.”

Though this may seem to be a legitimate reason for her refusal to administer “religious” marriage licenses (if those even existed), it raises some questions about the role of religious beliefs in the civil realm, and her role as a civil — not religious – marriage commissioner

If she truly “believes what the Bible says” why has she not refused to issue marriage licenses to couples who are not Christian, who have been previously divorced, or who are mixed religions?

According to the Bible, which she admits guides her life, administering all of these civil ceremonies would be causing her to go against what God teaches, and thus causing her to sin.

Her lack of consistency regarding this issue shows that this is not about any sort of “religious consistency,” but instead shows that her refusal actually has roots in prejudice against gay and lesbian people — couched in religious beliefs.

But, she claims that she is far from prejudiced, because she actually has “friends who are gay.”

Isn’t it interesting that anytime an individual, no matter whether it is anti-gay, anti-African American, anti-Hispanic, or anti- anyone else, claim that they “have friends who are ____” before they then disparage an entire community.

Could this statement, always made by those who feel very negatively about a certain group, be used to make their racism/homophobia seem more palatable? Could it be that they know that what they are doing is wrong, yet they want to make sure that no one else catches on to it?

In the end of the interview, when asked by Citizen Link about what her feelings are regarding homosexuality, Belforti launches into her more secular reason for refusing to administer marriage licenses to same-sex couples.

According to her, gay and lesbians should not be married, because the wording on the marriage certificate (aka. allowance of the word “spouse”) will make it difficult for future generations to trace their genealogy.

Lastly, she asserts that it seems as though this issue is not about marriage at all, but something more sinister, stating,

“I don’t understand why we have to change the form. I’m worried there’s another agenda involved here other than just allowing same-sex couples to be married. We know what a bride is, we know what a groom is—but if we choose to be a ‘spouse,’ does that even limit (marriage) to a human being? Do you know what I’m saying?”

Yes, Ms. Belforti, I think that the LGBT community gets exactly what you are saying.

© Kyle Luebke.
For more by Kyle Luebke, click here to visit his blog.
Opinions and advice expressed in our Views & Voices columns represent the author's own views and not necessarily those of LGBTQ Nation. We welcome opposing views and diverse perspectives. To submit a article, column or video, contact us here. Due to the volume of submissions received, we cannot guarantee publication.

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Filed under: New York

49 more reader comments:

  1. What people will say to get a Story SMH

    Posted on Sunday, August 21, 2011 at 3:50pm
  2. How can you compare TWO HUMAN-BEINGS getting Married to a HUMAN-BEING MARRYING AN ANIMAL? Get Real

    Posted on Sunday, August 21, 2011 at 3:50pm
  3. animal marriage, eh? can they legally consent? this was surely a “choke on that thought” moment. ijs

    Posted on Sunday, August 21, 2011 at 3:52pm
  4. ……..because where it says “person”, it clearly means “animal”.

    Posted on Sunday, August 21, 2011 at 3:53pm
  5. My gay friends like me, and as individuals, they obviously can speak for a whole community. Obviously I’m not heterosexist.

    Posted on Sunday, August 21, 2011 at 3:53pm
  6. lmao Lisa, really is that what that meant?

    Posted on Sunday, August 21, 2011 at 3:54pm
  7. Give me a fucking break

    Posted on Sunday, August 21, 2011 at 3:55pm
  8. Who thinks like this? This lady may be in need of some good psychiatric help, and need lots of prayers. Jeeeeez.

    Posted on Sunday, August 21, 2011 at 3:55pm
  9. Many uneducated bible thumpers think this…truly….

    Posted on Sunday, August 21, 2011 at 3:56pm
  10. LGBT are human just like everyone else. It sickens me when high nose conservatives spread rumors and treat them as if they were the spawn of Satan, only because they love someone who has the same reproductive organs as them. What’s more dangerous? Brain washing, sheltered lives and incredulous lies? Or having two moms that love you?

    Posted on Sunday, August 21, 2011 at 3:57pm
  11. I don’t know if i should laugh, cry, or fall to the ground and have a fit. Would it make a difference????

    Posted on Sunday, August 21, 2011 at 3:57pm
  12. it amazes me how anti gay individuals always want to compare allowing same-couples to marry with beastiality. they always use non-sense with shock value

    Posted on Sunday, August 21, 2011 at 3:58pm
  13. The real issue now is that this idiotic gay-bashing clerk has created a hostile office environment for LGBTers. She’s like a waitress who doesn’t want to serve black customers.

    Posted on Sunday, August 21, 2011 at 3:59pm
  14. such a stupid woman…

    Posted on Sunday, August 21, 2011 at 3:59pm
  15. The same argument was used against interracial marriage back in the day.

    Posted on Sunday, August 21, 2011 at 3:59pm
  16. OH MY GOD HOW IGNORANT CAN SOMEONE BE!!!! Is she jealous or something, because my wife and I have been married for 2 years, got married in Canada, and I bet our relationship is alot better than hers with her husband (or cow which ever she chooses).

    Posted on Sunday, August 21, 2011 at 4:02pm
  17. please tell me she’s not responsible to teach children…what a moron

    Posted on Sunday, August 21, 2011 at 4:06pm
  18. I think Jesus is shaking His head right now in pity for the poor fool…does she truly think that people are gonna go find some livestock to marry? Although…I have always had a thing for goats…they’re so cute! ;)

    Posted on Sunday, August 21, 2011 at 4:07pm
  19. hahaha

    Posted on Sunday, August 21, 2011 at 4:09pm
  20. Why do they always go back to this stupid argument. It takes 2 consenting people to create a marriage, even if someone wanted to marry an animal you cant legally because they cant even sign the paperwork or say YES. I mean the only reason I am making this statement is because if they are stupid enough to say that animals could be married might as well take it to lowest common denominator and point out the obvious reasons why it wouldnt be possible even if allowed by law. STUPID

    Posted on Sunday, August 21, 2011 at 4:11pm
  21. i like the pic they chose of her for this article, hilarious! her ignorance, not so funny unfortunately there are far too many people who think the way she does.

    Posted on Sunday, August 21, 2011 at 4:15pm
  22. I say she needs to be fired if she refuses to do her job. She is a government employee and can’t just ignore a law when she chooses.

    Posted on Sunday, August 21, 2011 at 4:18pm
  23. Watch out…I’m contemplating marrying my fence… ;)

    Posted on Sunday, August 21, 2011 at 4:19pm
  24. She’s absolutely right, me and my dog were engaged last weekend…*sarcasm*

    Posted on Sunday, August 21, 2011 at 4:20pm
  25. God forbid Ms. Beltroti should go see the new “Planet of the Apes”..she might really go into a psychotic tailspin! What an absurd old heifer.. she’s finally gotten her 15 mins of fame. Pathetic hateful creature..

    Posted on Sunday, August 21, 2011 at 4:23pm
  26. Bigotry masquerading as religious belief–nothing new in that. Her disingenuous stupidity is shocking, but, unfortunately, not uncommon.

    Posted on Sunday, August 21, 2011 at 4:25pm
  27. I can hardly believe that any gay or lesbian person would consider her to be a friend. I decided it would be in bad taste to joke about the cow.

    Posted on Sunday, August 21, 2011 at 4:27pm
  28. Exactly, Joe. I don’t think much of her, but her furry girlfriend is kind of cute. I guess equal rights applies to everyone, even the incredibly bigoted and ignorant.

    Posted on Sunday, August 21, 2011 at 4:29pm
  29. hope the gay community boycotts this town everyone else gets paid but them

    Posted on Sunday, August 21, 2011 at 5:02pm
  30. How many aren’t issuing lisences? I think as with churches if they don’t want to they don’t have to. More money for the ones that will. They played these same games when the issue was mixed marriages. only thing will happen is they will look really dumb when their dire predictions don’t happen.

    Posted on Sunday, August 21, 2011 at 5:06pm
  31. No surprise people like her and Santorum resort to lying to justify their hurtful agenda. I have gay friends? Where are they? Thou shall not lie!

    Posted on Sunday, August 21, 2011 at 5:11pm
  32. Now that I think about it, that black and white cat my neighbor has is pretty cute. His markings look like a tuxedo!

    Posted on Sunday, August 21, 2011 at 5:15pm
  33. Does the cow have a social security number? What’s his last name? Mrs. Cow cow…..whatever…its nonsense like this …..only the mentally insane can understand ….but let’s equal the playing field here…..lots of straight men have affairs with animals and go home to their wives….shows the insanity exists straight or gay….

    Posted on Sunday, August 21, 2011 at 5:15pm
  34. This woman is a damn quack. What a fucking moron. Why is she even thinking about animals getting married anyway, makes me wonder if she is planning on marrying an animal. The thought of marrying an animal would have never even crossed my mind. Then again, we have crazy ass people in this world. If you Google it I bet you can find people who have actually married their animals. It has nothing to do with if your gay or not. Some people are just that crazy lol or they are just that in love with their pets lol. This woman is a fucking idiot. I looked at her picture and she is ugly & most likely is NOT married. I don’t see who would want to marry someone that damn ugly. This woman is using God as an excuse for why she decided to do what she did. A lot of people always use God as an excuse for their so called “beliefs”. These people are fucking idiots. I say send these idiots to another damn country & get them the hell out of our country because they are trying to put their beliefs on others.

    Posted on Sunday, August 21, 2011 at 5:32pm
  35. pfffft…

    Posted on Sunday, August 21, 2011 at 5:42pm
  36. This whole bestiality spiel again? When will they give up? Can ANY animal have a “consenting relationship” with a human being? Really, of all the arguments that the religious right pushes out, this is the most preposterous: any non-human organism is immediately pushed out of a consenting relationship by the simple fact that *consent cannot be given*.

    Posted on Sunday, August 21, 2011 at 5:45pm
  37. Many have pointed out that an animal can’t verbally consent or sign a document. If a dog or an ape were well-trained and clever enough, a person could teach them to verbalize something similar to “I do,” or to hold a pen and mark “X.” Kind of like those dogs you see in videos who howl “Mommy” or “Funniest Home Videos” lol ;) I don’t know about you all, but I’d kind of have fun watching the protesters in favor of that right. Sick but hilarious.

    Posted on Sunday, August 21, 2011 at 6:14pm
  38. Because the human race is not smart enough to figure it out? sheesh..

    Posted on Sunday, August 21, 2011 at 6:43pm
  39. oh yes i did see a cow in a field i was particularly interested in. what a bunch of bullshit

    Posted on Monday, August 22, 2011 at 1:16am
  40. Another idiot

    Posted on Monday, August 22, 2011 at 3:59am
  41. Yes, because we all know that animals have standing for signing contracts… what a bunch of morons.

    Posted on Monday, August 22, 2011 at 9:07am
  42. I’m not quite sure animals can pay into the tax system, hold down jobs, and raise human children.

    Posted on Monday, August 22, 2011 at 9:25am
  43. Only the abolition of marriage as a legal contract will end this. As long as the state, or the church with the state’s power of enforcement have authority over these matters, people will be able to act out their bigotry in this way.

    Posted on Monday, August 22, 2011 at 2:41pm
  44. As a previous Assistant Town Clerk in Vermont. You have to take an Oath and Swear under God that you will uphold the constitution for that State. Otherwise your beliefs are trumping the States? That doesn’t make sense. She should be reported to the NY Secretary of State for not performing her duties according to the Constitution of the State of New York.

    Posted on Monday, August 22, 2011 at 3:26pm
  45. But she is one of the clerks who quit, right? Which makes her an absolutely inconsequential footnote and totally worth ignoring. She is an unimportant bigot who deserves less press than this message I am writing includes.

    Posted on Monday, August 22, 2011 at 4:10pm
  46. The world will be a better place when Christian literalists realize Leviticus (the only part of the Bible/Torah that “condemns” being gay) has to do with mitzvot and isn’t something that *has* to be done. The roots of tolerance are formed by knowing the truth and the past!

    Posted on Tuesday, August 23, 2011 at 5:58am
  47. (just wanted to re-post this, not sure who originally wrote it, I do not take credit.) So, let me get this straight … Charlie Sheen can make a ‘porn family’, Kelsey Grammer can end a 15-year marriage over the phone, Larry King can be on divorce #9, Britney Spears had a 55-hour marriage, Jesse James and Tiger Woods (while married) were having sex with EVERYONE. Yet, the idea of same-sex marriage is going to destroy the institution of marriage? Really?

    Posted on Tuesday, August 23, 2011 at 9:20am
  48. What’s the legal age of consent for an animal? Do we count that in human years or dog/cat/etc. years? I’m voting for animal years, otherwise my marriage to my dog isn’t going to last very long and I’ll be a widow.

    Also, my dog doesn’t have a birth certificate, which I believe we need for the marriage license. How would I go about getting a copy of that so we can get married? Can I take out life insurance on him then, and after he dies and I get the death certificate, collect on the policy?

    Yeah … we’re going to start marrying animals … it makes so much sense *sarcasm*

    Posted on Saturday, August 27, 2011 at 1:36pm
  49. @Amber -Maybe you can have a marriage of convenience? You wouldnt actually have to have a sexual relationship,, you could marry him for his money, LOL! The life insurance is a great idea since the dog won’t live very long.Maybe it would start a trend, people everywhere would marry their dogs, after 10-12 yrs or so the dog would die & the “spouse” would get the insurance money.

    Posted on Saturday, October 15, 2011 at 5:16pm