Goddamn Marriage Equality

So this is my first post that is not about vigilante activities or philosophies. This one is about what’s going on in the country around me. In case you’re reading this from Spain or Scandinavia, my country is the USA, so that’s the one I’m talking about.

Recently the Supreme Court of the US has declared that same-sex marriage in now legal in ALL states of the union, and to hear some people talk about it, you’d think they declared that any heterosexuals that are married must be dragged out and executed; there’s a loud, obnoxious, ignorant voice in opposition to this decision from a certain element.

It’s Christians. All the whining, moaning, and declarations that this is the end of civilization, is from Christians. Not all Christians, not even most. Most Christians (and most people in general) seem to be able to deal with this just fine, but the fanatic, fundamentalist, Bible thumpers out there seem to feel that allowing a man to marry another man somehow invalidates the feelings and commitments that any heterosexual couples have made to each other. My response to this is to relax, take a breath, and be comforted in the knowledge that this new marriage equality actually has nothing whatsoever to do with “Marriage” in the religious sense. So shut the hell up about it.

Let me explain why a gay marriage in this country has no relation whatsoever with some rigid Christian definition of “marriage” that you may hold so dear. The fact is that the legal endowment of “marriage” upon a couple is actually simply a bundled collection of new contractual relationships between the two parties regarding property, custody, and kinship. The legal aspect of the marriage contract merges the finances of the two parties, gives power-of-attourney for one spouse to be able to speak for another in certain circumstances, and makes the spouse the primary next-of-kin before parents or siblings for inheritance and end-of-life or critical medical decisions. These are all very practical legal matters for when one leaves their father and mother and cleaves to a spouse.

And that’s it. The State doesn’t care one way or another about the feelings between the two parties, the moralities involved, or whether the two are going to consummate the marriage or not or how. As far as the state is concerned, it’s all about the legal merger of two individuals into one corporate entity. THAT’S IT. And that’s the way it MUST BE because of the first amendment to the constitution. And whichever amendment that guarantees equal protection under the law, because what sense does it make to NOT allow a person’s life-partner and daily confidant, to speak for that person if they can’t speak for themselves. That’s really at the heart of all this; marriage means that since I spend every day for months and years with my spouse, I am clearly the person who knows them best, and am the best person to know what they would want if they are incapacitated or hospitalized or missing. Not their sister, not their mother; their life-partner.

So stop bitching and bellyacheing (and refusing to obey the law) about this situation. If your religious convictions will not allow you to issue a marriage license to a gay couple, you’d better make sure you have a job that does not require you to issue marriage licenses; your religious convictions do NOT trump the requirements for doing your job. Government institutions are not allowed to have religious bias, so if you want to work for a government institution (like the courthouse), you need to be able to keep your personal religious bias to yourself. If you CAN’T keep your religious bias to yourself, then find a job that doesn’t challenge it – those are your only two options.

Please raise any questions you may have about this matter in the comments, and I’ll do my best to address them. But honestly, this situation is extremely straightforward and not controversial at all.

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