Adam and Steve
I thought I was going to write something productive. Then I made the mistake of going on livejournal. Now I suddenly feel the desire to express something, which to me should seem so painfully obvious that it staggers the imagination. (I can’t believe I even have to declare this.)
From today’s AP: Mass. Court Clears Way for Gay Marriages
Before I begin: 2 things.
1) Given the nature that LJ has taken on lately, this is directed at no one. It is simply my opinion, my self-indulgent little rant, and at the end of the day, no one cares about my opinion except me. The same holds true for you and yours.
2) For those of you that think that this has something to do with religion, take your Bible, or your Torah, or the wood blocks that your “holy man” scribed on with a magnifying glass and the sun, or whatever religious text you live by, and shove it up your ass. For the purposes of this topic, your faith is completely irrelevant.
[spprs cracks knuckles]
Now, let’s begin.
There are two kinds of marriage in this country: that observed by the government, and that observed by an organized religion. For a legally binding marriage, the former is mandatory, the latter is optional.
It so happens that many marriages that are bound by a religion are observed as legal by the government. However, when you get married, you and your spouse still have to sign a contract with the state. I don’t care if Jesus comes down from Heaven and does the ceremony. Your governor doesn’t care either. You still have to sign the dotted line.
The benefits of this contract are that the newlyweds are now possibly entitled to (among many things) the following:
- More affordable insurance. Unless one spouse works someplace with the wisdom and benevolence to provide for domestic partner relationships, insurance is much more expensive, especially if one person is unemployed, self-employed, a homemaker, etc.
- Better banking. Banks will laugh in your face if you’re just two people scraping nickels together to get a mortgage. Married couples, however, are bound until death. There is safety in numbers.
- Tax breaks and incentives. ‘nuff said.
- Ditto all of the above for cosigning on anything, like a car.
- Power of attorney. Let’s say you and your lover (regardless of gender) are living happily ever after. Said lover saws his/her hand off, because you were so excited when you got that Vietnamese spin-fuck chair, that you couldn’t be bothered to read the OSHA warnings. You take said lover to the ER. Before the healing begins, they need you to sign a bunch of forms, assuming you’re married. But you’re not. Only next of kin can do sign. You stand there like and idiot, while the doctor stares at the pieces of your lover bleeding on the floor. Now would be a good time to test your faith in miracles.
The list goes on. The point is that without that government observed contract, the tables are significantly turned against two people who are not, much less cannot be, married.
Now, there was a time when the local priest or rabbi or crazy guy with magnifying glass represented the common good, and his word was your contract. Religion and law were merged. However, we have since leapt out of those times, and with the invention of a constitution that separates church from state, there are now legislators, judges, and lawyers that have nothing to do with your god(s). There is the law of the land, and there is the law of your faith. The two may resemble each other, but they are distinctly separate.
It is true that the leaders of organized religions are recognized by the government to perform marriages. Part of this is a carry-over from ye olden dayes. Part of it is strictly a matter of convenience. But your priest still has to fill out the red tape and submit it to the justice of the peace. So does Captain Stubing, when you get married on the Love Boat.
Am I saying religion should observe gay marriages? I couldn’t care less. Every religion is different, and that religion is responsible for setting those rules. That is the beauty of the First Amendment. You can choose your religion. Or you can choose to not choose a religion. Is a marriage that is strictly done by a judge at the courthouse recognized by God? No idea. You’ll have to ask God. But for the sake of marriage in the United States, it does not matter.
If you must stand by your holy book, ask yourself: does it condemn marriages by members who belong to separate religions? After all, the 10 commandments strictly state “thou shall have no other God but me”. So, does that mean heterosexual Hindus can’t marry each other? After all, aren’t they living in sin? Stick this in your pipe: if the Church of Satan is recognized as a religion in your state, then Satanists can marry each other. That is, of course, if they’re straight. What’s Yahweh’s call on that one? I can play this game all day, because everyone’s religion is different, and everyone’s holy text is completely and subjectively interpreted by each individual. As far as law goes, it is foundation built on loose sand. That’s why there is a separation between church and state.
It seems to me that two people who truly love each other, are dedicated to each other, and want to spend the rest of their lives supporting each other and fostering a binding relationship, should not be condemned, regardless of who those two people happen to be. They should be supported and encouraged to grow. I don’t think I’m out of line by saying that’s something Christ would expect.
I assure you, whatever you have done in a bedroom that got your jollies going would gross out someone else on this planet, not to mention clash with someone’s religious code. Cope. And mind your own fucking business. The world is hard enough as it is without creating more conflicts and divisions between us.
Remember, Jesus did not say, “Love thy neighbor… unless they’re faggots.”