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New My thinking has "evolved"
My first reaction to the equality in marriage movement was in the way of a shrug. I mean, why not? Seemed really important to them and no skin off me. But the more I read of traditionalists raging against this change, the more I support it. It is just so much fun to watch them get their knickers in a twist.
New So has mine, but in the exact opposite direction.
When the issue first came up I couldn't understand what all the fuss was about. All of my experiences with homosexuals (of both sexes) had been very positive. I couldn't understand why homosexuals would want to marry (and that part I still don't understand) but I couldn't imagine why anyone would oppose it. I used to joke, "I think it's a great idea. In fact, I think everyone who turns 25 should be required to get married. Why? Because misery loves company."

It wasn't until my friends on the Left started saying, "Committed, cohabitational heterosexual relationships are the same thing as committed, cohabitational homosexual relationships" that I took exception.
New But they are
And that's the problem.

You can't show a single thing other than the "the cheeeeldrun" argument that makes a gay marriage different from a straight one, and that argument is bullshit, because you're quite happy for straight childless people to get married and have no children.

ETA: I'm never going to let this particular item of bullshit go unanswered, BTW. Never. You might as well be talking about "decent white folks" getting married to "coloureds".

Same. Thing.
Expand Edited by pwhysall Sept. 8, 2014, 10:31:24 AM EDT
New Then why the two words?
If you're right, then "homosexual" === "heterosexual", so why the two words? I think you're conflating my saying "a heterosexual relationship is a different relationship from a homosexual relationship" as saying one is superior to the other. That is not what I am saying, anymore than I'd say "brotherhood is superior to sisterhood." Different != inferior.
New Marriage is marriage.
Fin

Sprogs are completely incidental and irrelevant.
New Re: Then why the two words?
So you favor a separate but equal institution, then?
New I prefer calling a spade a spade and a shovel a shovel.
I called my late brother my brother not because I thought it was "better" or "worse" a word than "sister", but because it more precisely defined our relationship. Similarly, I never referred to my late father as "Mom" or "Mother" and I've never referred to my mother as "Dad" or "Father."

I decided to propose to my wife 31 years ago because she, and she alone, was the woman I knew I wanted to bear my children. That is what my culture taught me about making the decision to propose: you don't do it until you are certain you want to have and rear children with the person under consideration. That formed the basis of the reason I proposed, hence the reason for my marriage. Clearly, that cannot be the basis for any homosexual proposal. I do not know what constitutes a homosexual relationship because I have never been in one. I do know that no homosexual relationship shares the procreative potential that my relationship to my wife has demonstrated. On its face, then, my relationship to my wife is different from any homosexual relationship that will ever exist. (In anticipation of the knee-jerk "You could say the same thing about infertile couples who marry!!ONE!!!", let me just point out the obvious: (1) The fact that such marriages are composed of the exact, same sexes as mine means it is of the same form and (2) Personally, I cannot understand why any couple (homo- or hetero-) would marry in the absence of an expectation of children. That is not what I was taught to believe a marriage was all about. You got married to "start your own family" and nothing else.)

Note that I have made no judgment or claim as to whether one relationship is superior to the other. How could I? I do not even know what constitutes a homosexual relationship. I can therefore not understand what the characteristics are of a homosexual marriage. But one thing is clear: the set of attributes of a homosexual relationship do not possess a 1:1 correspondence to the set of attributes of a heterosexual relationship that is onto. Hence they are different relationships, whence, whatever "marriage" means to a homosexual couple must be different from what is meant by "marriage" to a heterosexual couple. I therefore argue that we should not use the same noun to identify these two different relationships. I lost that argument to the herd. I'm okay with losing that argument. But it does not mean (now or ever) that somehow by calling a spade a shovel, it makes the spade a shovel.

I'm tired of the "sex === race" argument. That is plainly false. Procreative capacity has nothing to do with race and that is why mixed race hetero marriages do not differ from same race hetero marriages. There are two, you'll forgive me, outstandingly idiotic assertions from the so-called "marriage equality" ranks: (1) Marriage is a civil right and (2) Insisting on another term for a homosexual "marriage" is equivalent to being opposed to mixed race marriages.
New I know plenty of people who got married for love
And for the other things like visitation rights and so on. They have no intention of having kids.

How is that any different? You have a very narrowly defined interpretation of what marriage is for that doesn't match the wider societal definition.
Regards,
-scott
Welcome to Rivendell, Mr. Anderson.
New It may be narrow, but I claim it's logical.
It's one I was taught as a child. You don't need to be married to love someone. Mores have changed so much in my lifetime that the "stigma" of "shacking up" is gone. Moreover, the stigma of having "illegitimate children" is also largely gone. One could argue that there is no longer any reason for marriage at all. There are far easier methods of achieving visitation rights, end-of-life decision making authority, and so on without marrying.

(Aside: "Illegitimate children" is an interesting phrase, don't you think? Illegitimate means lacking legality. How are children born "legally?" They're parents are married at the time of their birth, of course. Does this not suggest further that my definition of marriage was, at least at one time, the prevailing understanding?)

You say my narrow definition doesn't match the wider societal definition. That may or may not be true. I do not have (and have not researched) how many married couples capable of producing children do so, but I'd guess that is the most common result. In any case, the meaning of the term has now evolved into a term that ambiguously defines multiple sorts of relationships. In the end, all we've really lost is precision in describing legal relationships.

Edit: I hasten to point out that my definition of marriage does absolutely not preclude love. It's not possible for me to imagine coming to the decision that you want to bear and raise children with a person whom you do not love.
Expand Edited by mmoffitt Sept. 9, 2014, 10:20:23 AM EDT
New But marriage isn't logical.
People get married because they love each other. Take one look at the rings, the honeymoon, all of that stuff: it doesn't scream "CHILDREN". Children are generally expected from married heterosexual couples, but society also expects that people who love each other get married, whether they want kids or not.
Regards,
-scott
Welcome to Rivendell, Mr. Anderson.
New Well, it should be. It's a contract.
But if I grant that marriage is an expectation of people being in love today, I think that idea is time limited. I was taught to believe that people should get married if and only if they intend to have children because of the stigma attached to the children (the "bastards", IOW), not to the parents. Since "living together" is no longer considered a vice, and no shame is associated with having been born out of wedlock, I believe "marriage" today has precious little value. Marriage belongs to a bygone era.
New Your vows must have been very interesting.
I, (name), take you (name), to be my (wife/husband), to have and to hold from this day forward, for better or for worse, for richer, for poorer, in sickness and in health, to love and to cherish; from this day forward until death do us part.


I don't see "children" in there.

FWIW.

Cheers,
Scott.
New Heh.
My uncle had written our vows and I honestly don't remember them. What I do remember is why I wanted to marry my wife: to start a family with her. But, I've already said that. ;0)

New Reminds me of Humpty Dumpty.
Through the Looking Glass, Lewis Carroll.
"When I use a word," Humpty Dumpty said in rather a scornful tone, "it means just what I choose it to mean -- neither more nor less."
Alex

"There is a cult of ignorance in the United States, and there has always been. The strain of anti-intellectualism has been a constant thread winding its way through our political and cultural life, nurtured by the false notion that democracy means that "my ignorance is just as good as your knowledge."

-- Isaac Asimov
New thats the old, you knocked her up you have to marry her
meme, hasnt been in force for a looong time
Any opinions expressed by me are mine alone, posted from my home computer, on my own time as a free American and do not reflect the opinions of any person or company that I have had professional relations with in the past 59 years. meep
New Ah, but
IN SOVIET RUSSIA, etc.
New so were you banging someone on the side? One for children and one for fun?
Sorry, I grew up in the same general culture. Marriage wasn't for gits, it was an eternal expression of love. Kids were a possibility, but not the only reason for marriage. Yes, there was a lot of marriages because of pregnancy, but that was not the only reason one got married.
Any opinions expressed by me are mine alone, posted from my home computer, on my own time as a free American and do not reflect the opinions of any person or company that I have had professional relations with in the past 59 years. meep
New Yeah, but you didn't have any Soviet influence. ;0)
New no, but glaswegian socialists are close enough
Any opinions expressed by me are mine alone, posted from my home computer, on my own time as a free American and do not reflect the opinions of any person or company that I have had professional relations with in the past 59 years. meep
New One could as easily overlay your inculcated-syllogism on 'religious'/non-religious pairings.
Q: How many? go the whole-hog-including-the-postage: become married in a church or with many churchy-aphorisms within the Ceremony?
Q: %What of those: profess (sanctimoniously or not) *each's* faith, or more al punte: Practice the doxologies of (selected church venue or Preacher-palaver) at any Other-time than: this singular event?

Surely a mis-match in the Two's expectations about, Intimations of Immortality--(to name just one aspect of all religiosity, yet heard-about)--would be more daunting, in the pursuit of connubial-Oneness ... within the daily travails, Ups/Downs, occasional Existential-angst, etc. than either color-of-skin, same-or-different genitalia (or every variant of inculcated-mores in the range of nearby human tribes.)

One Can overcome youtful conditioning, via the same processes as (used to..) lead ~towards Adulthood; this process (mostly.. I think) via the necessary-Reasoning:
that which ever supersedes the/any mere derivable-results of George-Boole's symbolic-logic--a mondo algorithm, I grant--and which we see: is hugely useful for any number of material-based tool-making applications. But not for sole-usage re homo-sap thoughts/actions: where the [referents] of Common words have long ceased to be reliably *shared (beyond some local tribe) and even then: how often is the Tradition honored more in its breach? aka serial divorce (for just one 'exceptionalism'.)

* even here.


Now if.. you deem that Logic is equivalent/on the same scale as Reason??
(Or, as that MicroSoftie troll, in a thread eons ago.. parsed another Problem ... by saying, "If it's legal it's ethical!")
Well then, we are talking-past-each-other. Never mind.
New I find Bakunin's argument compelling.
Scott didn't seem to like my calling marriage a contract. But that is exactly what it is. It is a contract between a couple and the State. It cannot be dissolved unless the State approves. Bakunin refers to a man, woman and children as the "natural family." He writes:
Abolition not of the natural family but of the legal family founded on law and property. Religious and civil marriage to be replaced by free marriage. Adult men and women have the right to unite and separate as they please, nor has society the right to hinder their union or to force them to maintain it. With the abolition of the right of inheritance and the education of children assured by society, all the legal reasons for the irrevocability of marriage will disappear. The union of a man and a woman must be free, for a free choice is the indispensable condition for moral sincerity. In marriage, man and woman must enjoy absolute liberty. Neither violence nor passion nor rights surrendered in the past can justify an invasion by one of the liberty of another, and every such invasion shall be considered a crime.

https://www.marxists.org/reference/archive/bakunin/works/1866/catechism.htm

New You can't believe you might be wrong on this
Astounding.
I think the single most compelling piece of evidence for global warming is that Fox News viewers think it's a hoax.
New Marriage is a lot of things.
As we've discussed before...

A nice summary of the topic is from the Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy:

4.3 Same-Sex Marriage

The proposal to replace marriage entirely with civil unions or domestic partnerships differs from the ‘compromise’ proposal of a two-tier marriage law: marriage for opposite-sex couples only, and civil unions or domestic partnerships for same-sex and, if they choose, opposite-sex couples. The compromise proposal grants some of the benefits of marriage without ceding the title (or indeed, as usually proposed, all the benefits) of marriage to same-sex couples. This position does not fully answer arguments for same-sex marriage.

Many arguments for same-sex marriage invoke liberal principles of justice such as equal treatment, equal opportunity, and neutrality. Marriage provides benefits which are denied to same-sex couples on the basis of their orientation; if the function of marriage is the legal recognition of loving, or “voluntary intimate,” relationships, the exclusion of same-sex relationships appears arbitrary and unjustly discriminatory (Wellington 1995, 13). Same-sex relationships are relevantly similar to heterosexual relationships recognized as marriages, yet the state denies gays and lesbians access to the benefits of marriage, hence treating them unequally (Mohr 2005, Rajczi 2008, Williams 2011). Further, arguments in support of such discrimination seem to depend on controversial moral claims regarding homosexuality of the sort excluded by neutrality (Wellington 1995, Schaff 2004, Wedgwood 1999).

To see why a two-tier solution fails to address these arguments, we must consider what benefits marriage provides. There are tangible benefits such as eligibility for health insurance and pensions, privacy rights, immigration eligibility, and hospital visiting rights (see Mohr 2005, Chapter 3). Crucially, however, there is also an important benefit of legal, and indirectly social, recognition of a relationship as marriage. The status of marriage itself confers legitimacy and invokes social support. The two-tier system does not provide equal treatment because it does not confer on same-sex relationships the status associated with marriage.

In addition, some philosophers have argued that excluding gays and lesbians from marriage is central to gay and lesbian oppression, making them ‘second-class citizens’ and underlying social discrimination against them. Marriage is central to concepts of good citizenship, and so exclusion from it displaces gays and lesbians from full and equal citizenship: “being fit for marriage is intimately bound up with our cultural conception of what it means to be a citizen … because marriage is culturally conceived as playing a uniquely foundational role in sustaining civil society” (Calhoun 2000, 108). From this perspective, the ‘separate-but-equal’ category of civil unions retains the harmful legal symbol of inferiority (Card 2007, Mohr 2005, 89, Calhoun 2000, Chapter 5; cf. Stivers and Valls 2007).

However, if marriage is essentially heterosexual, excluding same-sex couples is not unequal treatment; same-sex relationships simply do not qualify as marriages. One case for the essential heterosexuality of marriage invokes linguistic definition: marriage is by definition heterosexual, just as a bachelor is by definition an unmarried man (Stainton, cited in Mercier 2001). But this confuses meaning and reference. Past applications of a term need not yield necessary and sufficient criteria for applying it: ‘marriage’, like ‘citizen’, may be extended to new cases without thereby changing its meaning (Mercier 2001). As noted above, appeal to past definition begs the question of what the legal definition should be (Stivers and Valls 2007).

A normative argument for the essential heterosexuality of marriage appeals to its purpose: reproduction in a naturally procreative unit (see 3.2.a). But marriage does not require that spouses be able to procreate naturally, or that they intend to do so at all. Further, married couples adopt and reproduce using donated gametes, rather than procreating ‘naturally’. Nor do proponents of this objection to same-sex marriage generally suggest that entry to marriage should be restricted by excluding those unable to procreate without third-party assistance, or not intending to do so.

Indeed, as the existence of intentionally childless married couples suggests, marriage has purposes other than child-rearing—notably, fostering a committed relationship (Mohr 2005, Wellington 1995, Wedgwood 1999). This point suggests a second defense of same-sex marriage: exclusive marital commitments are goods which the state should promote amongst same-sex as well as opposite-sex couples (Macedo 1995). As noted above, such rationales come into tension with liberal neutrality; further controversy regarding them will be discussed below (5.2).

Some arguments against same-sex marriage invoke a precautionary principle urging that changes which might affect child welfare be made with extreme caution. But in light of the data available, Murphy argues that the precautionary principle has been met with regard to harm to children. On his view, parenting is a basic civil right, the restriction of which requires the threat of a certain amount of harm. But social science literature shows that children are neither typically nor catastrophically harmed by same-sex parenting. Even if two biological parents statistically provide the optimal parenting situation, optimality is too high a standard for permitting parenting. This can be seen if an optimality condition is imagined for other factors, such as education or wealth (Murphy 2011).

A third objection made to same-sex marriage is that its proponents have no principled reason to oppose legalizing polygamy (e.g. Finnis 1997; see Corvino 2005). One response differentiates the two by citing possible harmful effects for women found in male-headed polygyny, but not in same-sex marriage (e.g. Wedgwood 1999). Another response is to bite the bullet: a liberal state should not choose amongst the various ways (compatible with justice) individuals wish to organize sex and intimacy. Thus, the state should recognize a diversity of marital relationships—including polygamy (Calhoun 2005, Mahoney 2008).

Finally, some arguments against same-sex marriage rely on judgments that same-sex sexual activity is impermissible. As noted above, the soundness of these arguments aside, neutrality excludes appeal to such contested moral views (Rawls 1997, 779, Schaff 2004, Wedgwood 1999). However, some arguments against same-sex marriage have invoked neutrality, on the grounds that legalizing same-sex marriage would force some citizens to tolerate what they find morally abhorrent (Jordan 1995). But this reasoning seems to imply, absurdly, that mixed-race marriage, where that is the subject of controversy, should not be legalized. A rights claim to equal treatment (if such a claim can support same-sex marriage) trumps offense caused to those who disagree; the state is not required to be neutral in matters of justice (Beyer 2002; Boonin 1999; Schaff 2004; see also Barry 2011).


Shrinking it all down to "marriage is a contract about reproduction" or "the natural family is a man, a woman, and 2.3 children" is far too simplistic.

Saying "gay couples should have everything that married couples have in society, but they can't call it 'marriage'" is "separate-but-equal". It isn't equal. First of all, married people don't have to carry marriage licenses around to take advantage of their rights. You think that even if the law were perfect in treating things equally that gay couple wouldn't have to prove their status every time they tried to take advantage of their benefits? I don't.

We get that you don't like it. But you can't prove that your position about gay marriage is "correct" or "logical". It isn't. ;-p It's what you believe based on how you were raised and your experiences. Other people have different experiences, obviously, and the meanings of words and social customs change.

Even the definition of "child" and "adult" has changed. We don't let 14 year-olds marry any more even if that is what was "traditional" in the past.

FWIW.

Cheers,
Scott.
New "Nice summary" = assumes facts not in evidence and an incredibly weak argument.
First, your nice summary states, "if the function of marriage is the legal recognition of loving, or “voluntary intimate,” relationships ..." while the rest of the statement must logically follow, it does so vacuously ( p => q is equivalent to ~p or q ). It is not at all clear (and no evidence if given to suggest) that "the function of marriage" is as asserted. On the contrary, there is significant evidence that the function of marriage is the State's interest in regulating procreation.

Second, and I find this truly remarkable, the author(s) state, "The status of marriage itself confers legitimacy and invokes social support. ... Indeed, as the existence of intentionally childless married couples suggests, marriage has purposes other than child-rearing—notably, fostering a committed relationship." If the strength of any couple's relationship (regardless of sex) is in any way determined by the issuance of a State license with a specific word printed on it, it is a remarkably weak relationship. But this point must be made by same-sex marriage proponents because in its absence, assuming all legal rights, responsibilities and privileges are also granted civil unions other than marriage, there is no basis for the false claim of a "two-tier system."

Third, the author(s) write, "On his view, parenting is a basic civil right, the restriction of which requires the threat of a certain amount of harm." I feel like I'm in the film, "Idiocracy." Is anything, anything at all, not a "civil right" in this country anymore? Oh yeah, access to health care without funding Wall Street isn't a civil right. I almost forgot where I was living again.

Fourth, the author(s) write, "But social science literature shows that children are neither typically nor catastrophically harmed by same-sex parenting." The amount of study on this is far too limited to make the affirmative claim that "no harm" comes to children raised by "two mommies" or "two daddies" instead of the usual and customary "mommy and daddy." I make no claim that harm does come, but claiming the existence of sufficient evidence in its absence is textbook assuming facts not in evidence.

Finally, the author(s) write, "Nor do proponents of this objection to same-sex marriage generally suggest that entry to marriage should be restricted by excluding those unable to procreate without third-party assistance, or not intending to do so." Well, it is true that I've never advocated barring couples from marrying who are either incapable of natural reproduction or do not wish it, I still don't understand why anyone would want to marry in such circumstance. The strength of my relationship with my wife (31 years yesterday) has abso-fricking-lutely nothing to do with my marriage license. I don't give a tinker's damn what "society at large" thinks of our relationship and I do not depend upon third parties to define for me what that relationship is and what it means to the two of us. The two of us whom, after all, are the only two whose opinion on the matter is of any consequence.

The worst part of this argument is that there is some intangible benefit to having the State recognize my marriage as "a marriage." If Indiana were to draft a law that invalidated my marriage because the ceremony was not performed in a church (something that would not surprise me, btw), but allowed us to maintain all the legal rights, duties and privileges of marriage, would that somehow diminish my relationship with my wife? The idea is ludicrous. I wouldn't care and I doubt very seriously my wife would care either.

Edit:
In conclusion, let me hold up a mirror. You write that I can't prove I'm right or that my position is logical, well, neither can you. And I think you have the more difficult task. Children are a benefit to society, yes? Children are typically the result of heterosexual marriage, yes? So, there's the benefit to society of heterosexual marriage. Where and what, exactly, is the benefit to society of same-sex marriage?
Expand Edited by mmoffitt Sept. 11, 2014, 08:55:31 AM EDT
     Posner's delicious decision on gay marriage - (rcareaga) - (41)
         do younger first cousins have to marry elsewhere? curious -NT - (boxley) - (2)
             Re: do younger first cousins have to marry elsewhere? curious - (rcareaga)
             ignore, dupe - (rcareaga)
         He's fricking wrong on the first cousin law. Dead wrong. - (mmoffitt) - (37)
             pp.17-19 - (Another Scott) - (26)
                 My thinking has "evolved" - (gcareaga) - (23)
                     So has mine, but in the exact opposite direction. - (mmoffitt) - (22)
                         But they are - (pwhysall) - (21)
                             Then why the two words? - (mmoffitt) - (20)
                                 Marriage is marriage. - (pwhysall)
                                 Re: Then why the two words? - (gcareaga) - (18)
                                     I prefer calling a spade a spade and a shovel a shovel. - (mmoffitt) - (17)
                                         I know plenty of people who got married for love - (malraux) - (8)
                                             It may be narrow, but I claim it's logical. - (mmoffitt) - (7)
                                                 But marriage isn't logical. - (malraux) - (6)
                                                     Well, it should be. It's a contract. - (mmoffitt) - (5)
                                                         Your vows must have been very interesting. - (Another Scott) - (1)
                                                             Heh. - (mmoffitt)
                                                         Reminds me of Humpty Dumpty. - (a6l6e6x)
                                                         thats the old, you knocked her up you have to marry her - (boxley) - (1)
                                                             Ah, but - (pwhysall)
                                         so were you banging someone on the side? One for children and one for fun? - (boxley) - (2)
                                             Yeah, but you didn't have any Soviet influence. ;0) -NT - (mmoffitt) - (1)
                                                 no, but glaswegian socialists are close enough -NT - (boxley)
                                         One could as easily overlay your inculcated-syllogism on 'religious'/non-religious pairings. - (Ashton) - (4)
                                             I find Bakunin's argument compelling. - (mmoffitt) - (3)
                                                 You can't believe you might be wrong on this - (Silverlock)
                                                 Marriage is a lot of things. - (Another Scott) - (1)
                                                     "Nice summary" = assumes facts not in evidence and an incredibly weak argument. - (mmoffitt)
                 Thanks. Context is everything. - (mmoffitt) - (1)
                     my idea of a ideal family - (boxley)
             Re: He's fricking wrong on the first cousin law. Dead wrong. - (malraux)
             Thank you for your contribution - (rcareaga) - (8)
                 He does have his critics though... - (Another Scott) - (7)
                     Congress would not have voted to impeach unless they were sure that - (boxley) - (5)
                         Dunno. - (Another Scott) - (4)
                             chatted with some of the participants after the fact - (boxley) - (3)
                                 One of the five? - (Another Scott) - (2)
                                     One of the additional five -NT - (boxley) - (1)
                                         Uncle Ted voted Aye on obstruction ... - (Another Scott)
                     Masterful standoff; two equally skilled legal-logic-antagonists - (Ashton)

Bestowing a cruddy-green patina to this over-polished line of deductive reasoning.
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