August 04, 2003

Gay Marriage?

Yesterday, while flipping merrily through the channels, I paused on Fox news to give my thumb a bit of a rest. Whether or not gay marriages should be made legal was being explored by proponents from both ends of the political spectrum. The underlying question seems to be how to define the term "marriage." People overly concerned with family values would respond to that with something similar to the effect of: an alliance between two people formed for the sake of having and raising children. Here's where I loudly clear my throat and make mention of all the couples who do have the option to marry legally that do not take that step for the (sole) purposes of producing offspring. Undoubtedly, some would say that they did it entirely out of love (and not purely for the sake of what tax breaks couples only begin to reap after they've had said offspring). There's another perfectly plausible reason why two people might want to make their relationship with their partner legal. That is to gain additional access to health care benefits for their would-be spouse. Getting back into the right wing of things, if this were how the United States government also defined marriage, then logically any two heterosexual people regardless of creed and color would be permitted to wed with the tacit understanding that they would then get on with the baby making procedures. How would our legal system ever have knowledge that it was never really the couples' intention to agree to that? There are also those married couples out there that desire to have their own kids, but for physical limitations cannot, still to be considered. So, narrowly defining marriage just won't do. You can't just cut a substantial segment out of the population like that with an inadequate definition that only applies to some.

Now that it is readily apparent that the current scope of the term marriage accounts for more than just those who marry for the sake of having and raising children, let's discuss for just a moment why a definition like this is favorable to some individuals. It's actually painfully obvious. This definition deliberately perpetuates gay exclusion from taking the vows of matrimony. It just isn't something the whole of society is ready or willing to accept as being perfectly natural. That's why gays don't already have that right; the love that they have for their partner is construed within the U.S. as being something perverse. The stigma associated with gays exists to detour people away from that lifestyle. Fathers and mothers fear that their own sons or daughters might turn out to be gay. It is also feared that if it were condoned the population growth would ultimately suffer.

Okay, I think I have now arrived at a place where I can tell you my thoughts on the whole matter. How I define the term marriage is a ceremony where two people forge a union on the sum basis of qualities found in the other participating party. Those qualities could be anything, such the person's ability or likewise inability to have children, etc. It doesn't really matter what they are to me and I don't think it should to the U.S. government either. I further believe that the government should take a more liberal interpretation of what the word represents and not persist in barring gay couples from sharing in an age-old tradition that even precedes government sanction.

-- CrystalShiloh @ 11:39 AM