An occasional outlet for my thoughts on life, technology, motorcycles, backpacking, kayaking, skydiving...

Friday, October 7, 2005

I've wanted to get this out for a long time, and have often done so verbally. I figured it was time to get it out in text.

I wrote the follow in response to the article: Marriage and Government Need a Divorce

If two people wish to consider themselves married, it is not the government's proper business to deprive them of that choice.

But the government should also avoid defining marriage in a way offensive to traditionalists - or to those who would like to see the custom made more inclusive. People should be free to associate as they please and to regard others as married or not, depending on their own conscience. The political controversy only exists because the state has butted in where it doesn't belong.

First of all I want to make clear that I realize that bigots exist. I'm not going to take them into consideration because they, by definition (See: bigot, obstinate), are in error, cannot be reasoned with, and are irrelevant.

My response:

You are partially correct. But their is a problem. Your idea of "People should be free to associate as they please" is good, but "and to regard others as married or not, depending on their own conscience" does not work. Then all you have is, "Well, if you don't consider us married, we don't consider you married either." What then have you solved? Nothing.

You are on the right track, but are trying to solve the wrong problem. Marriage has a definition. It is a religious activity. No one (excluding bigots, see notes above) wants to deny Americans rights based on race, sexual preference, or anything else. What people fear is being told that their churches must accept and perform marriages that contradict the religion itself.

The problem here is that the government its extending legal considerations to people based on their participation in a religious activity. Out of ignorance or laziness the issue has been addressed as a need to redefine the religious activity. What needs to happen is an exercise in humility. The government needs to accept that it has been wrong for a very long time and needs create a new _term_ and a new _procedure_ for legally yoking two consenting individuals.

I realize that this is a big shift in culture but so was the civil rights movement. It was a difficult undertaking, but we got through it. We can get through this too. However, I can assure you that we will not have peace involving the issue of "gay marriage" ever. You will sooner see peace between the descendants of Isaac and Ishmael.

Imagine if the government extended certain rights only to people who have been "saved". Would the solution be to modify the definition of being "saved"? No. That's silly. Marriage has, and has always had a definition. There have been later attempts to modify the definition. However, by it's original definition, no gay person wants to be married. What the gay community wants is the rights and respect given to married people. I for one say it's high time we give it to them.

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