Marriage is a defined legal construct, not an abstract idea.
>We can't punish people for participating in our form of government, even if we disagree with them.
Of course we can. It's the government that can't. We can freely choose who we associate with, and we can freely choose to not associate with people who hold opinions that we feel are immoral, even if the opinion isn't illegal.
>> Of course we can. It's the government that can't.
Is that true? I'm not American or a lawyer so I don't know what workplace discrimination laws are like, but I would assume that in many western countries, you can't legally discriminate against or harass workers or fellow employees based on their beliefs.
This opens up a legal question to which I don't know the answer: Where would these "step down" tweets tread legally with respect to workplace harassment?
The difference between voting for Prop 8 and voting for Obama or Bush is that voting for a political candidate is a much more complicated affair. Obama and Bush have opinions about many issues, and it's impossible to find a political candidate that agrees with you on every issue. So you necessarily must make compromises.
But Prop 8 is much more simple. Here is the full text:
>SECTION I. Title
>This measure shall be known and may be cited as the "California Marriage Protection Act."
>SECTION 2. Article I. Section 7.5 is added to the California >Constitution. to read:
>Sec. 7.5. Only marriage between a man and a woman is valid or >recognized in California.
Voting on that measure is a very simple decision: you either agree with that one point or you disagree with it. So yes, it is possible to create a much better opinion of a person's view on a particular matter who votes one way or another on Prop 8 than on which candidate they vote for.
Also: when there are only two candidates with any real chance of winning, voting for the one who (personally and party-affiliation-wise) has a more liberal attitude to gay rights is obviously not actively vilifying gay people and acting to take away their rights.