Wednesday, January 13, 2010

Marriage is for WHAT?

I normally don’t get political on this blog, however, yesterday I was listening to the news concerning the ongoing battle in California over gays having the right to marry, and I heard something that made my hair stand on end.

First, I should say up front that I am strongly pro gay rights and believe that all consenting adults, regardless of their sexual orientation, should be able to marry whatever other consenting adult they choose. I mean, come on people – this is supposed to be a free country – at least that is what we were all taught growing up.

It seems to me that the anti-gay marriage movement is running out of legitimate arguments and devolving into outright silliness. The statement that made my childfree hair stand on end was something to the effect of “marriage is for the purpose of procreation, therefore, gays should not be allowed to marry”.

Hm, well if we use that logic, then hubby and me, and every other married childfree heterosexual couple, should have our marriage licenses revoked, since our marriages were not formed for the purpose of procreation and no spawn will emerge from our married loins. Let's also not forget the childless married couples. They too should have their marriage licenses revoked, since their marriages will not produce any children.

Is this not the most ridiculous argument you have ever heard?

The fact is, many people marry for love, not for procreation and cheers to them! Let’s also not forget that many people procreate outside of wedlock but interestingly, the same people trying to prevent gays from marrying by using the argument that marriage is for procreation aren’t fighting to enact laws to prohibit unmarried people from procreating. Shouldn’t reverse logic be true: if marriage is for procreation, then people who procreate should be married?

The bottom line is: there is no good argument for prohibiting gays from marrying and the anti gay marriage folks know it. Prohibiting gays from marrying is a denial of their civil rights and it is only a matter of time before our country comes to its senses and grows the frig up, just as it did when it allowed women the right to vote. Just as it did when it allowed interracial couples to marry. Just as it did when it ended slavery and segregation. Hubby and I were shaking our heads in amazement last night discussing this issue and feeling like we were in the Twilight Zone. What century do we live in? Isn’t this the 21st century? We swear, sometimes it feels like the Middle Ages.

27 comments:

Robin said...

The entire concept of marriage is so frustrating at this point, why is everything wrapped up so tightly in religion? My mom's idea is to just get rid of the concept of marriage entirely and make it completely just a legal thing. Not a bad idea. I don't really care about marriage, I did it for two real reasons: to be a legal couple so if he's ever in any trouble I'm considered family and to be a complete family sharing last names and all. Other than that, it's no difference to me.

~Beth~ said...

BRAVO!

...and that's all I have to say. :)

WhiteRaven Slade said...

I'm always amazed at the people who are all up in other people's business in the first place, and then struggle to justify how it's their "right"to stand in the way of the rights of others.

djmist said...

Yep... and what about married folks with kids who then divorce. We need to outlaw divorce after procreation too. If we're gonna get back to the stone age we have a lot of work to do!

Cara said...

My favorite comment was something to the tune of: people on death row are allowed to marry, pedophiles are allowed to marry, people who don't want kids are allowed to marry... so why can't gays? So being childless is akin to being a mass murderer or a pedophile? WTF, mate?

Michi said...

Oh sweet Jebus. There really is only one response to that kind of statement:
http://www.scienceblogs.de/frischer-wind/picard-facepalm.jpg

Also, in regards to the whole outlawing divorce to protect the sanctity of marriage idea, there is a movement that was started in response to the passage of Prop 8 in California that's proposing to do just that: http://rescuemarriage.org/about-rescue-marriage/

It's a complete larf, of course, just look at the creator's bio: "John Marcotte is a firm believer in traditional family values. He currently opposes government-funded death panels, Obama talking to children and MSNBC's entire prime-time line-up." The guy's whole point that is if you're going to use the "protecting traditional marriage" argument, you might as well go all the way and ban divorce, otherwise it's just being hypocritical and we wouldn't want that, now would we? It's the same kind of hypocrisy that Childfreedom's post points out.

Cathy said...

Very well stated!

Retired Syd said...

Even the judge in this case knows that logic is a crock of shit. Earlier this year when he was handling pre-trial issues, and this argument was made, he replied that he had just presided over a marriage between two 80-year olds. He asked Counsel was it his intention that thee people be prevented from marrying as well since they obviously have no procreative intent?

HawkMom said...

Excellent post. If we left it up to these people and their Bibles, my white husband and I wouldn't be married. I'm amazed as how many formerly disenfranchised groups are on board with this nonsense. Basically any of us who aren't white, landowning, protestant, heterosexuals males should - in theory - be one big happy rainbow family.

Dave said...

Well put. And don't forget about the elderly who get (re)married, as Syd mentioned. Those nutjobs who oppose SSM have no explanation for allowing them to marry even though no children will result from them.

I have written my state (New York) state senator (including the Republican leader) a few times about this. I am always sure to remind him how the Republican party claims to "want government out of your lives" but yet wants to badly intrude into the lives of those same-sex couples who wish to marry. Even though this state senator knows me and usually writes me back on other issues, he is strangely silent here.

If the U.S. Supreme Court hears the appeals now working their way through the federal courts, will Justice Kennedy join the 4 liberals like he has on other issues (i.e. Lawrence v. Texas, overturning anti-sodomy laws) to make SSM legal everywhere?

CFVixen said...

Well, I always say that I married my hubby because I loved HIM...I didn't have any ulterior motives (i.e., reproducing). That never entered my mind as being necessary for marriage.

lauracarroll said...

Pew research and other studies show that when asked the reason people got married, having children is Not at the top of the list. Not even close. Most respondents say in one way or another that they get married because they think it will add to their life fulfillent. Marriage for children and between a man and a woman--it is clear that those premises are So over....Laura
www.lauracarroll.com

hi said...

Great post and comments. I don't have much to add, except to say that I think the religious folks that oppose same-sex marriage never had any valid arguments to begin with. Their only opposition came from their faith and scripture, and there's no logic in that. They have now resorted to crap like this.

Sustantivo said...

Technically, marriage was created to ensure that the man owned the woman and could assume beyond almost all doubt that the offspring he was caring for were in fact his own. It's patriarchal, religious and outdated.

However, as we humans EVOLVE so too do our traditions, and what marriage has become is now totally irrelevant to what it was created for.

Anti gay crusaders need to get with the times.

StayTheCurse said...

Exellent post, as usual. Michi and Hawkmom made two important points to consider, as well as the logic-based( imagine an educated democracy using logic! )points by everyone else. Many of the people spreading this bigotry are, as Michi noted, also vigorously spreading dangerous propaganda that the growing neo-fascist movement ( sorry, conservatives - fascism is a RIGHT-WING philosophy; look it up )is actually swallowing. Lies like the 'death panels' are almost certainly started by the same religious reactionaries who still think the Bible's 'go forth and multiply' edict works in a century where the world's food supply is already hopelessly behind population growth.
Hawkmom pointed out that marriage has always been legally re-defined throughout history, and that, as recently as the early 70s, skin color was actually a factor in several states' decisions as to whether you could choose your own spouse. The world didn't end when those laws were repealed, and it won't end now..( for THAT reason, at least..)!

goddiva-11 said...

If it was made law I would respect it however, if I had to vote for it I would definitely vote against it. Religion aside I find homosexuality to be abnormal and the whole concept of gay marriage to be a mockery and should it become accepted nation wide it will the domino effect of worst to come. Before you know it will go back to the days of Greek orgies justifying pedophilia.

Fanboy Wife said...

I hate that the idea that marriage is for the creation of children too. Just because I don’t want children means that I shouldn’t be allowed to be married? I have heard this argument in the past, and it is asinine. If the religious groups don’t want to perform same-sex marriages, then who cares? There are lots of courthouses to get married in, and there are some religious groups that don’t care about sexual orientation that can oversee weddings.

I guess the only people that I know that got married with having children in mind are those that already have a baby or one is on the way and they don’t want “to live in sin.” I guess getting married erases those past indiscretions…

Elle said...

Excellent post! I agree with every word. I married my husband because I love, him and wanted to spend the rest of my life with him. NOT because I wanted to create a little army of children in our image.

The injustice of banning gay marriage really hit me when I had to go to the emergency room this past weekend. Music Man was allowed to check me in when he said he was my husband, but as soon as we got back to the room and they started checking me out, he was completely ignored. I had such a bad migraine I could barely comprehend anything they were saying to me, and yet they ignored anything Music Man said.

UNTIL the medical assistant came in to collect my insurance and personal information. Once they confirmed that Music Man was my husband, they treated him as a person and allowed him input in the decisions they were making on my care. Even in my barely coherent state, I recognized how wrong this was and thought about how hard and frustrating situations like this must be for homosexual couples. It really pissed me off.

Wendy said...

aaagh, so annoying. I thought we were about freedom in this country?

HawkMom said...

@goddiva-11

"Before you know it will go back to the days of Greek orgies justifying pedophilia."

I respect differing views and all, but when I hear people say this, it's really confusing. It seems like such a huge leap. Two (or more, because I think polygamy is pretty cool) consenting adults in legally-bound marriage would hardly lead to child-rape orgies, right? *shrugs*

Sea_creature said...

Great post... And I agree with Robin. They should make marriage a legal thing and leave the old, backwards religious ideals behind.
It's all a huge double standard and I'm so tired of it. PROGRESSION, PEOPLE! GAH!

Kerstvrouw said...

I also love it when people say "I have nothing against gay people (bonuspoints if: "my best friend is gay!" is included), I just don't support gay marriage."

Oh, that's nice. You have nothing against gays, you just don't think they deserve the same rights as us. that's like saying "Gee, I have nothing against black people, I just don't think they should have the right to vote!"

Childfreeeee said...

I agree with HawkMom on this. Just because a lifestyle is "abnormal" - meaning the majority do not live it - does not make it immoral. If you hold the view that abnormal behavior is automatically immoral, then you better be careful if you are a childfree person because many people see us as abnormal. About the same percentage of people who are gay are childfree by choice. Many see us as abnormal for not taking part in procreation - a process that we have all the natural parts for. And many see us as immoral too because they believe we're disobeying a divine command to spawn. So we all know how it feels to be viewed and judged in a negative light for simply living the life that feels natural and right to us.

Sustantivo said...

greek paedophile orgies?

of course, because all gay men are also paedophiles, and gay women are, of course, irrelevant.

honestly - what a ridiculous thing to say, espiecally coming from someone taking his/her name from the mis-spelling of a woman who rides around on horses in the nuddy. imagine if we all did that - suddenly sexual unions between woman and horses would be the norm! oh the humanity!

/eye rolling

tivogirl said...

The government should get out of the marriage business altogether. Separate the legal civil union declaration from marriage altogether.

A marriage is a religious ceremony and the definition of it should be decided by each church as they see fit. The government could then create a simple, legal that would secure the rights of two people regardless of their marital status. It could cover married people, children taking care of elderly parents, siblings sharing a house, gay couples, lifelong roomates, or whatever else fits the legal definition.

People who wanted both could get both, and those who aren't religious or don't fit the religious definition of marriage could still have legal rights.

Aubrey said...

I completely agree with the original poster. Like many others here I didn't marry my husband with the intention of spawning, and I find it insulting to think that my union would thus hold no validity to the people arguing that marriage is for procreation alone. The concept of marriage is for many a religious institution, but it also grants certain rights and privileges that wouldn't be available to couples under the law, otherwise. I find it disgusting that if I weren't married to my husband I couldn't go see him or be involved in his care were he to end up in an intensive care unit somewhere even though we have been committed to each other for six years now. I believe that every couple or even committed group of people should have these rights. This is the 21st century, and certain close-minded groups need to get with the program and evolve along with the rest of us.

ElizabethR1533 said...

Brilliant blog - once again.
When we got married, we got married because we wanted to. Not for religious reasons - we are both atheist, and it wasn't for reasons of procreation. Just because we got married, doesn't automatically oblige me to become a breeding machine.
As for gay marriage; well for me, whatever two consenting adults want to do, that is their business. Human rights should be fair to everyone, no matter someone's sexuality.