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Tacitus thinks Rick Santorum is owed an apology.
There’s a much stronger case for polygamy, based on thousands of years of history, than for gay marriage, which is a recent invention. Not that I support polygamy, which seems like an inherently unstable institution. Even the Bible shows that it caused trouble wherever it existed.
Senator Santorum is certainly entitled to his opinion, and those who choose may even apologize to him (although until the Netherlands sanctions the coupling of a man and his daughter, he’ll be only partially vindicated). But I’m continually baffled when the same folks who (rightly) claim the government has no place legislating asset or property redistribution, still call for all form of prohibition and regulation on personal choices like family, sex and drug use. I’ve heard the arguments, moral & otherwise; I fail to see any logical consistency.
Recall that Santorum was actually just referring to an earlier Supreme Court opinion. That opinion, with which Santorum concurred, suggested that overruling the sodomy laws as unconstitutional called into question the state’s ability to regulate matters like polygamy and incest. If the state cannot determine that a legal marriage can only be made by one man and one woman, how can it limit the numbers to two, regardless of sex.
The Canadian law establishing homosexual marriage risibly retains, I understand, rules on consanguinity that make sense, if at all, only in the context of heterosexual unions.
“If the state cannot determine that a legal marriage can only be made by one man and one woman, how can it limit the numbers to two, regardless of sex.”
If I had my druthers, the state would not involve itself at all in the “legality” of such unions, traditional or otherwise. Personal or religious compacts should remain in the personal & religious spheres. If, however, the state is going to provide beneficial consequences to those who seek this legal sanction — provided, of course, they purchase a license — then I don’t see how the state can deny the benefits to those unions falling outside the traditional realms.
This thread is ancient history but had to comment: The “gay marriage opens the door for polygamy” schtick is nothing but a right-wing red herring.
Marriage and consequenty marriage law in this country over (conservatively estimating) the last 75 years is based on gender equality. No longer is marriage a program of ownership as it once was in this country (and still is in many others). The only restriction left in marriage based on sex is in the entrance rules. Allowing same-sex couples to make the same commitment (gender-neutral) that opposite-sex couples make does not legally open the doors to polygamy. Polyygamy is based on the exact opposite of the mores and laws set up and recognized in this country. It IS about ownership and therefore flies in the face of both the gender-equality standards and (actually) capatalism (which helped bring about the type of marriage system that we have today). Polygamy would be moving marriage backward to a more feudal time. Same-sex marriage actually progresses things and is the more conservative position to take.
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