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June 01, 2005

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Galois

Oh, I see. The introduction of legislation protecting same-sex couples causes opposite-sex couples to forego marriage when having children. In fact, it even causes opposite-sex couples in Ireland to forego marriage. That's some powerful bill.

Fitz

What it does Galios
is reinforce the notion that "all family forms are inherently equal"
And therefore “deprivilages” the traditional family.
Exactly what feminist and homosexual activists and academics want..
Its in all the literature.
Have you been to college?

Chairm

Nothing retroactive about the success of the campaign that raced to deconstruct the social institution of marriage.

By 1996-97 the government and the public had come to expect state recognition of "gay marriage". As with other reforms in family law, advocates argued that traditional family formation in the small and largely homogenous society of Holland had proven so hardy that marriage would withstand the major law reform. Some even predicted that marriage would be strengthened.

Not what happened, of course, but such advocates slip away from being held accountable for the consequences of their well-intentioned projects.

Arguments much like those you make (primarily for SSM but also in favor of making the most ofthe stepping stones of alternative statuses) were pioneered by gay activists in Holland, as elsewhere. Your feigned ignorance of this is not credible, Galois.

So no matter when the actual date was that the bills were passed and same sex twosomes registered their relationships, the gay activists had their victory around this demaracation point. And, as Marty succintly said, it flattened what was a special status for the man-woman union previously acknowledged as the unique social institution of marriage.

Your hollow mocking tone indicates that you may not be familar with the demographic background on Dutch society. I'm not inclined to educate you on that which you have openly ridiculed without merit.

Galois

So now it is when the people come to expect state recognition of same-sex marriage that trouble begins. Maybe that's what happened in Ireland too. The Irish are expecting "gay marriage". You find a country where the nonmarital birth rate has risen sharply in the last decade that also has legal recognition of same-sex unions. From that you conclude that the recognition of same-sex unions--excuse me the expectation of recognition of same-sex unions--causes an increase in nonmarital birth rates. Never mind that the nonmarital birth rates has risen faster in other countries (I don't know whether they expect recognition of same-sex unions) and never mind that the increase as a whole was slower in countries that passed legal recognition of same-sex unions. Somehow that doesn't matter, because you have found one country that meets the twin criteria of having legal recogntion of same-sex unions and a sharp increase in the nonmarital birth rate. Pardon me if I see absolutely no basis for your conclusions linking the two. By similar reasoning one could say that the legal push for same-sex marriage in the US has had great benefits. In 1993 the Hawaii Supreme Court ruled initialy in favor of the plaintiffs in a same-sex marriage case causing a push for similar cases in other states. Since that time in the US the increase in the nonmarital birth rate has slowed considerable and teenage pregnancy has dropped tremendously, especially in states like Vermont, Hawaii, Massachusetts, Washington, and California.

Chairm

Galois, you'd make leaps and bounds without touching the ground.

Fool

Op-ed:

You use the word ambiguous because it serves your purpose. If the definition were to include spouses of the same sex, that would not introduce ambiguity. It may widen the pool of individuals or couples who may avail themselves of marriage, but it does not make the definition more ambiguous. Recognizing marriage for a larger pool of candidates does not make the definition ambiguous. There's a big difference. However, you misuse the term ambiguous because it fits your political agenda. So, yes, I stand by my earlier comment since your choice of ambiguous is simply incorrect and, as such, has not bearing on my comments.

You do not seem to ever offer any substantive support for your position. You merely ask "loaded" questions about others' comments. Nonetheless, your second question ("Moreso [sic] than the 'striaght [sic]' couples who opt not for marriage already?") doesn't really support your position. First, yes, I think it would blur the distinction incredibly more than simple cohabitation. Second, if you do not believe domestic partnership registries would blur the line more than mere cohabitation, then why would you subscribe to Kurtz's position in this regard? If same-sex couples would not blur the line more than currently cohabitating couples, this seems a useless argument in support of your position. If cohabitation and marriage have already been equalized (or are on their way there) by cohabitating couples, then it's foolish to use the equalization argument against SSM.

Fitz

What it does. (quite simply)
is reinforce the notion that "all family forms are inherently equal"
And therefore “deprivilages” the traditional family.
Exactly what feminist and homosexual activists and academics want..
Its in all the literature.
Have you people been to college?

They despise the "hegemony" of a single standard of marriage. They are correct that this standard is "privileged". The hope to "subvert the dominant paradigm" by introducing gay marriage.
This "new" definition reinforces the idea that "all family forms are inherently equal"
that any family arrangement (for child rearing or otherwise)are equally valid.

See.. they finds the traditional family to be "archaic and patriarchal".
Am I the only one here who has been to college?

Fitz

This "new" definition of marriage will be androgynous and without any necessary connection to child bearing. (or parental lineage)
Furthermore, the very idea that such an old and esteemed institution can be rearranged under minds it normative force.
This “new” definition of marriage will fail to capture the popular imagination of the bulk of the public. By implicitly stating that “all family forms are inherently equal” we will have lessened any stigma to cohabitation or illegitimacy. Marriage itself will have less popular appeal, especially to those at the margins.
This will come down hardest on women, children and the poor.
The groups most adversely effected as our marriage culture crumbles.

op-ed

Fool:

You use the word ambiguous because it serves your purpose.

True. As it turns out, words have meanings and the meaning of "ambiguous" fits.

If the definition were to include spouses of the same sex, that would not introduce ambiguity.

Yes, it does. Is the marriage a same-sex marriage, or is it a regular marriage?

Recognizing marriage for a larger pool of candidates does not make the definition ambiguous.

Yes, it does. Adding consanguine unions to the definition introduces yet more interpretations of the word, as does polyamorous communes. Adding pets, juveniles, and baseball teams to the definition adds yet more. Just because each of the definitions you add has a distinct meaning on its own doesn't mean piling them together isn't ambiguous. Your dodge fails.

First, yes, I think it would blur the distinction incredibly more than simple cohabitation.

How so? Remember, you use the term "incredibly more."

Second, if you do not believe domestic partnership registries would blur the line more than mere cohabitation, then why would you subscribe to Kurtz's position in this regard?

Remind me again. What is my position on Kurtz?

If same-sex couples would not blur the line more than currently cohabitating couples, this seems a useless argument in support of your position.

The relative impact of same-sex couples vs. cohabiting couples is, indeed, superflous, but it is your argument, not mine. I'm arguing that redefining the term marriage has more impact on the institution than what any particular individual or group chooses to do relative to it.

Fool

No, Op-Ed, it still does not make the definition ambiguous.

am•big•u•ous: Open to more than one interpretation: an ambiguous reply.

Thus, a definition that expressly includes [or excludes] SSMs is not ambiguous. By contrast, a marriage statute that defines “marriage” by exclusion can be ambiguous. In New York, for instance, marriages are valid unless void.

S 6. Void marriages. A marriage is absolutely void if contracted by a person whose husband or wife by a former marriage is living, unless either: 1. Such former marriage has been annulled or has been dissolved for a cause other than the adultery of such person; provided, that if such former marriage has been dissolved for the cause of the adultery of such person, he or she may marry again in the cases provided for in section eight of this chapter and such subsequent marriage shall be valid; 3. Such former marriage has been dissolved pursuant to section seven-a of this chapter.

Paragraph 2 was apparently repealed.

Likewise, the Massachusetts law was ambiguous – the one that actually defined marriage. Yes, other New York and Massachusetts statutes suggested that everyone assumed marriage was between a man and a woman. However, such assumptions are ambiguous – not a law with a specific definition.

This exclusionary device is ambiguous. All marriages other than “void” marriages are valid. If marriages between people of the same sex are not specifically “void,” then they are presumably valid. Accordingly, when asked to weight in, courts in the State of New York concluded that excluding same-sex couples from marriage conformed to the law - to resolve the ambiguity.

On the other hand, if there was a Paragraph 4, which read: “A marriage is absolutely void if contracted between two persons of the same sex,” then the law would not be ambiguous.

Again, if marriage were to include same-sex couples, it would not be ambiguous; it would simply expand the class of people who may marry. A law that does not address the issue at all is ambiguous. To include SSM does not open it up to interpretation. The definition would include same-sex couples. There is no need to interpret the definition. It is what it is. The only reason you find it ambiguous is due to your apparent prurient interest in knowing about a person’s spouse. Apparently that matters to you.

You wrote:

If the definition were to include spouses of the same sex, that would not introduce ambiguity.
Yes, it does. Is the marriage a same-sex marriage, or is it a regular marriage?

“A regular marriage?” Cute.

You inserted the distinction. The law would have removed it. By inquiring whether the couple is same-sex, you have introduced ambiguity that the changed law had eliminated. That question is your interest because that would matter to you. The ambiguity is found in your mind – not in the definition of marriage. The definition is quite clear. Under a definition that includes same-sex couples, there is no difference between “same-sex marriage” and “regular marriage”. It is you who creates the ambiguity, because that matters to you. Is – to use your words – the current definition of regular marriage ambiguous because you don’t know if a man’s wife is black or white? Older than he or younger than he? A third cousin to him or completely unrelated? Episcopalian or Jewish? These characteristics do no affect the definition of marriage. They, in my opinion, do not render the current definition ambiguous. Would you like the state to further define marriage to serve your curiosity so we would have distinct definitions for “interracial marriage,” “intergeneration marriage,” “interfaith marriage,” and “X degree of consanguinity marriage”? That way you can be absolutely sure about the status of the marriage.

They are ancillary. If the definition were to include same-sex couples, it would only be your seeming need to know whether it’s a “same-sex marriage[] or … a regular marriage” that creates ambiguity. The ambiguity results from your need to know those answers – not the definition of marriage. You would know that if someone identified themselves as “married,” it could mean to someone of the same-sex. However, why does that matter? If someone today tells you they’re married, you assume that they mean to a member of the opposite sex. However, I assume you don’t wonder about the specifics of the spouse (unless this is a close friend). I assume your first question is not, “Is she black?” Catholic? Related to him? Because that doesn’t matter – not for the definition of marriage.

You took the opportunity to add “Adding consanguine unions to the definition introduces yet more interpretations of the word, as does polyamorous communes. Adding pets, juveniles, and baseball teams to the definition adds yet more. Just because each of the definitions you add has a distinct meaning on its own doesn’t mean piling them together isn’t ambiguous.” Of course, these additional elements have nothing to do with the debate at hand. You called my comments a dodge. Your decision to bring in topics that are not currently on the table doesn’t further your argument and is the actual “dodge”.

Nonetheless, assuming these were added, it would not make the definition ambiguous. If the definition were to include all of the variants you have introduced, it is still your curiosity that creates the ambiguity? Is Mark married to Alice? Alec? Mary, Connie and Ruth? Or, Spot the family pet?

So, it is ambiguous to you. You feel some need to distinguish them. But, for the definition, it wouldn’t matter. Under the definition, same-sex marriage and “regular marriage” are the same. As such, there is no ambiguity. You have created the ambiguity because to know that information is important to you. The definition remains quite clear and would negate the distinction between same-sex marriage and "regular" marriage.

op-ed

Fool,

Your dictionary quote only serves to prove my point. Adding alternate interpretations to marriage adds to ambiguity. The remainder of your post is merely an attempt to inculcate some notion of "mind" or "need to know" into this definition.

Tell me this. If piling baseball teams, pets, consanguine, polyamorous, and same-sex couples under one heading is unambiguous, then exactly what is the state's unambiguous purpose in recognizing those relationships? Make sure your answer doesn't apply to relationships not included.

...there is no difference between “same-sex marriage” and “regular marriage”.

This is the basic lie behind same-sex marriage. If you truly believe "there is no difference between" same-sex and male-female couples, you should go ask someone you trust to explain reproduction to you. The obvious nature of this lie is why every state that has voted on same-sex marriage has rejected it by a significant margin.

Mike

For the most in-depth study to date on same-sex marriage as it relates to Scandinavia, I would highly recommend this article by Spedale, Eskridge and Ytterberg from the journal Issues in Legal Scholarship:

http://www.freedomtomarry.org/pdf/ScandinaviaBEPressArticle.pdf

F. Rottles

That article is rife with misrepresentations.

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