02/05/2004: "Gay Marriage moving forward again"
Well the courts continue to see it as their duty to decide for the rest of us what the laws should be. The state of Massachusetts has clarified their earlier ruling to say that Civil Unions would not be acceptable to meet the court's view on the constitutional requirement regarding discrimination.
The way I see it, we have two options as a society:
#1. Abolish Marriage as a state institution.
What does marriage mean to the state? A potential tax break and insurance benefits and that's about it. Because a married couple no longer has inherent power of attorney for one another (because of abuses of this power in the past), the unity of a married couple in the eyes of the law is all but gone. Most marriage laws these days have more to do with protecting the couple from each other than unifying and proctecting the couple from others. So why should the State care, particularly since civil unions provide the same benefits? Without an answer to that question, Marriage should be left as a religious institution.
#2. Protect Marriage as a life giving relationship between one Man and one Woman.
Many believe (and I think I put myself in this group) that society has an obligation to encourage behavior that'll help society as a whole. The general thought is that marriage helps us have an institution that is beneficial to raising our children who are often referred to, and rightly so, as the future of our country. The central family unit works best in it's natural form: Man, Woman, Children and 'till death do us part. Why? Follow this logic:
-Without a Man, a Woman and sexual intercourse, their can be no children.
-The two people who came together to create, through God, those children should bear the responsibility and priviledge of raising those children.
-It is easier and more effective for a person to raise all their children together.
-If all their children didn't come from the same person, the previous item is infeasible without Marriage or Polygamy.
So marriage has a benefit to society, but only in the sense of creating an institution that helps us more effectively raise Children. Marriage outside of that, provides no benefit to society. As such, Marriage, from the state's perspective, need only apply to those relationships potentially capable of bearing children.
I say we go with option #2.
That's my thought on the subject anyway. Thoughts?