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'Til death do us part 

Street Smarts

Same-sex unions and provision of birth control are gaining prominence in the more-conservative-than-thou heat of recent Republican debates. But how do you square a passion for limited government with a desire to limit people's passions?

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Tom Howes of central Colorado Springs is a teacher

Is it time for Colorado to allow same-sex unions? To celebrate love is a wonderful thing, no matter who it's between.

Where do you stand on this issue? I see a huge contradiction in the conservative right, [Rick] Santorum in particular, accusing the government of stealing our freedom, but calling for legislation to dictate our most personal decisions.

Are you married? Happily so, for 35 years.

Would legalizing same-sex unions erode the sanctity of your marriage, as some conservatives argue? I applaud any couple committing to marriage. It's people like Newt Gingrich, cheating on multiple wives, that put the sanctity of marriage at risk.

Do you personally know any gay couples? I know several. One couple has been together 25 years.

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Jody Hughes of downtown is a pantry cook

Should Colorado legalize same-sex unions? If it's all about personal freedom, and it's not hurting anyone else, the state should not limit personal choice. How can you advocate more freedom and less government for only some people?

Do you know any gay couples? My mother was a lesbian. Her relationship with her partner was pretty much like anyone else's — rocky here and there, better sometimes than others. She would have married her partner if she could have.

Would legalizing same-sex unions undermine the sanctity of marriage? I've heard Newt Gingrich say that, and he's cheated on how many wives?

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John Ridge of northwest Colorado Springs is a draftsman

How do you view same-sex unions? I have a number of friends in same-sex relationships. They're all contributing members of society and deserve the same benefits as opposite-sex couples.

How consistent is it to claim that government is taking away our freedom, and then to advocate laws prohibiting same-sex unions? To be honest, I haven't thought about it in those terms. I know what I believe and feel. I pay no attention to conservative or liberal opinion.

Do same-sex unions compromise the sanctity of marriage? It depends on your definition of marriage. I define it as two people forsaking all others to spend their lives together. Anybody who cheats on or abuses his or her spouse threatens the sanctity of marriage more than two people being the same sex.

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