Sunday, October 25, 2015

Marriage equality

Recently, on Twitter, I happened to come across this.
 So, it appears we have a few things to address here.  Warning, this might be a bit more intimate and touch a subject than perhaps others.

Marriage and Pedophilia

The first image there attempts to claim (unsuccessfully) that allowing same-sex couples to marry will cause homosexuals to rape children.  Let that sink in for a moment.  It's basically saying that, by allowing people to marry, those people will engage in sexual impropriety with minors.

This is a terrible argument, and to illustrate this, let's take it's polar corollary first.  Prohibition (or lack of, in this case both are the same argument) of marriage is therefore the answer to elimination of child rape.  Think for a moment now.  Does one really, honestly believe that the simple act of marriage is what causes people to become pedophiles?

If your answer is yes, then this illustrates the second point.  Straight people engaged in marriage should be at least as likely to be pedophiles, should they not?  If the simple act of obtaining a marriage license is the key factor here, then the logical conclusion is that we should simply stop all forms of marriage.  

Of course, we know that this is not the case.  Pedophilia is a mental disorder that can be caused by a variety of causes.  Marrying someone is not one of them.


The second image for some reason still has children in it.  However, having discussed it above, let's move on.  Basically, the argument here is that, somehow, sodomy should never be normalized.  I think, however, that the acts of two consenting adults with regards to sexual things should perhaps not be dictated by people outside of that relationship.

But let's even gloss over that point for at least one other that's related.  The implication here is that people only ever get married for reasons relating to sex.  This makes it an especially difficult argument.  Essentially, the person must fundamentally believe that the only reason for entering into marriage is to contractually obligate one person to fulfill the other's sexual desires.  Apparently, this means it has nothing to do with tax benefits, feelings of non-sexual love and attraction, romance, or any of the other reasons people typically claim to get married.

As this argument clearly illustrates, eliminating marriage in general (from the law, at least - treat it like a birthday, or other social function) is the fundamental purpose.  If sexual relations are the absolute only reason these sorts of people are entering into these marriage contracts, then we have no further need of providing tax incentives, property rights, and other legal benefits to people who engage in these relationships.  It's really hard to argue, as the picture does, that the children should really be of any concern regarding marriage, because they have little to do with the sex.  Custody laws could be enacted just as easily without the marriage clauses by recognizing parents legally in some other fashion.

This brings us to another point.

Real Parents

This tweet is from the same thread, so I'm including it here, because it definitely relates to the first two pictures.

We're going to deal with the first part, about children deserving real parents.  I may come back to the part about what constitutes sex and gender in another post, though lots of other people have already addressed it.

This relates directly to at least two factors.


Clearly, if a child deserves its real parents, we can't allow adoption to continue.  Obviously, I think this is an idiotic stance, and that's why I'm going to tear it a new sphincter here.  If we accept the idea that parents must be real and genuine, then simply put we must preclude anyone who doesn't have children from being parents.  In another way, this means that infertile people, single people, and anyone who is not the biological parent of a child should never have any say in whatever counts as parenting.

Let's take this a step further.  This also means that no one, regardless of whether or not they have children, should be allowed to adopt any children who aren't theirs.  Childrens' services goes right out the door, because this means that we should never have foster parents.  Similarly, this means that the government should never have control over anyone's children, because every child deserves whatever parents it was born to.

This line of thinking infuriates me, and I hope it at least makes you think about this argument.

Single Parents and Related

Basically, this point also drives home another point.  Sometimes, women die in childbirth.  Sometimes, one parent is unavailable due to any number of circumstances (military service, employment obligations, et cetera).  It is in the best interest of the child, certainly, to have competent caregivers.  However, if we're going to take this route, those children don't deserve any parents that aren't theirs.  I'm not going to linger on this point.  Suffice to say again, however, that this is another clear argument for elimination of marriage from the legal system.

Sexual Immorality

This one is going to be the most fun.

So here we have a poster arguing that marriage causes sexual immorality.  I think I can agree with this, in part.  I mean, married people do indeed cheat on one another with some frequency.  However, this clearly is not limited to homosexuals.  Similarly, depending on what you consider sexual immorality to be, the elimination of marriage could easily remedy at least part of it.  

Divorce is clearly the largest indicator that there is at least some problem that could be solved.  Without marriage, we need not worry about divorces, because divorce doesn't happen without it.  

Although, that's a terribly fallacious argument, because cheating happens in all sorts of relationships, not just marriages.  I think I just felt my brain snap a tiny little bit.  Do people honestly believe that no form of sexual immorality (whatever that means) happens outside of being married?  Or do they honestly believe marriage causes much higher instance of sexual immorality?  I think the implication is pretty clear.  Eliminate marriage and fix some problems.

True Marriage Equality

It is hereby my proposition that, to fix the ails of at least these arguments, we eliminate marriage as a legal contract.  Marriages within society I think are fine.  If two religious people want to have a civil ceremony, that's excellent!  Birthdays, bar mitzfah, baptisms, anniversaries, pinky promises, sharing of friendship lockets, matching tattoos and jewelry and clothing, and a number of other types of civil ceremony and social conventions already happen outside the jurisdiction of the law.  Placing marriage into exactly the same sort of category does, I think, make sense from this perspective.

Another reason to eliminate marriage is to create a truer equality.  As a single person, I can't just declare my roommate to be my tax benefit and file jointly, even if we're splitting rent and other bills.  As a single person with no kids, I get no benefits on taxes that other people are sending to schools that I also pay for.  I could continue this list, but I digress.

Just to clarify, I'm not arguing for that position, but it is a logical argument of the positions preceding it.  I don't mind paying taxes so people who have children can send them to school, for example.

So, elimination of marriage would truly be the equalitarian way to deal with this.  However, the most equitable argument is to simply allow a pair of people to get married, regardless of gender.  It shouldn't matter that it's two men who want to sign that contract, or two women, or one of each.  Within the scope of law, it's perfectly logical.  I'd even go so far as to say that any people living together should be allowed similar benefits, like joint filing of taxes, regardless of marriage status.  

Sex is supposedly not the only reason people get married, right?