An Example – Marriage for Anyone
One of the perennial issues is gay marriage. In fact before the 2020 election, I had people tell me they were very concerned a Republican sweep of Congress would result in a law change disallowing gay marriage. I had never heard that but fake news and fear mongering is the new normal, so I just shook my head and wondered. I know some people who are opposed to gay marriage, but a significant majority of the people I know (beyond 95%) could give a Rhino’s rhinoplasty who you marry. The small percentage who care are more concerned from a religious perspective. This seems to be the crux of the problem. Some religions are opposed to same sex marriage. But, but, but … I thought we had separation of Church and State? Yup, now that’s funny!
Bit of an aside here, years ago I was talking to a Scotsman and we were discussing old girlfriends and he was almost forlorn as he told about a girl from his past. She was a great lass, but we could never be together he said. Why not, I inquired? She was Catholic and my family was Protestant. It just wasn’t done. I know what you are thinking and no, I’m not that old and neither is he.
So, you find it offensive? I find people parking their grocery carts in the middle of the aisle offensive, but based on the number of people doing it, nobody cares. You find the concept of same sex love off-putting? This world needs more love, we should probably be less worried about its origins and just encourage it, but I digress. Back to gay marriage. What’s the rub (yeah, I couldn’t resist)? Does it damage society or just crimp your halo? Does it cost more: This was one argument put forth years ago (actually when AIDS was the fear de jour)? The answer is no, but this question does incite other questions. For example, why should being married have tax or any other governmental advantages? Does society benefit? The individual? The couple? Bit of philosophical conversation great with a beer, but not here.
Marriage is a contract. The government got involved…because it can. You want to solve the problem, make marriage a contract. Before Sally and Joe citizen get married, they sign a contract that stipulates asset allocation, offspring and animal custody and cost sharing, contractual obligations, length of term and other pertinent details. If we did this, we may have fewer divorces. Leave the marriage ceremonies to the Churches. If a church won’t let you get married to the person you want to marry, maybe you should switch churches? If you want the government to tell churches who can get married in what church, you are a nosy-body and should pray more and church less.
So why isn’t this a solution? If you make government marriage a contract, anyone can do it. Two people sign a contract and its done. Leave church marriage up to the particular sects, it may assist in identifying the hypocrites. The policy should be to stay out of it, it is none of the government’s business. Since the government is required to be involved in divorce proceedings, it should demand both parties be aware of what is at stake, but who marries who, who cares. You want to go fight with the Mormons, go ahead, but leave the citizenry (and me) out of the church wars.
Next up … The Abyss