28 March 2013

Thoughts on gay marriage, and hyperbole

So the Supremes are hearing arguments about the gay marriage issue, with both sides hoping that their ruling will end the discussion their way. A couple things I've noticed about this issue over the years.

First off, those opposed have shown that they stand solidly with the debate techniques of all "antis" I've seen, resorting to sillyness and illogic to support their position (my favorite has been "what's next: allowing pedophiles to marry their victims, or people to marry their pets?"). The "religious argument" is (or should be) a non-starter: plenty of non Christian folks in the US, who feel no obligation to follow Biblical law. This leaves most of their points to boil down to "Ug, the gheys... YUCK!".

That said, I HAVE heard one decent point in the "con" column. And it's a powerful one: "the government doesn't belong in peoples' bedroom". Unfortunately, they're already there, with benefits granted to married couples. So...

We come to the "pro" side of the argument. The funniest I've heard from them was on Facespace, written by someone obviously single: "but this is an issue that effects these people EVERY DAY".


The only ways the government recognizing a marriage has any effect are rare circumstances: taxes, inheritance, insurance, and (in some places) hospital visitation (and I haven't been in a hospital in over a decade that still restricts to "immediate family").  Government recognition (or it's lack) doesn't make you more able to love (or cohabitate with) whoever you wish, regardless of the design of their plumbing, and it's similarity to your own.

So really, either way the Supremes rule is a net "meh" for society. It might have further repercussions on some other issues, but is anybody who's invested in "gay rights"* really interested in those other issues?

There is one thing that keeps popping into my mind, though. Many years ago, the Supremes had a big hit with their "Ten Commandments" decision. All the pundits covered it, media lauded it, women swooned. I was on a pagan mailing list, and it was all afire with justified vindication.

Funny thing: that same day, the USSC handed down the Kelo decision.

Now, don't get me wrong: keeping government buildings from posting the legal base used by one faith (OK, three major faith groups) was important. But isn't being secure in the ownership of your paid-for property at least AS important?

The "Ten Commandments" decision was trumpeted from the roof tops. Kelo? Not even close.

So now, I ask you: while we're spending so much time and energy on gay marriage... what else is the USSC writing a decision on?


* "gay rights" is a term that's always bothered me. Aren't the talking about basic human rights, not some advanced special rights?

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