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Gingersnap
03-11-2009, 11:53 AM
AM Alert: Quitting the marriage biz -- gay, straight or otherwise

One of the topics of discussion at last week's Supreme Court hearing on Proposition 8 was whether the government should be in the marriage business.

Well, on Tuesday two people filed an initiative to get the state of California out of the business altogether.

The initiative, filed by Kaelan Housewright and Ali Shams, replaces the term "marriage" with "domestic partnership" throughout California statutes, while preserving the rights of marriage.

Shams and Housewright are students, 22 and 21 respectively, the AP reported.

The next step would be to gather roughly 700,000 valid signatures to place the measure on the ballot -- a tall task.

But hey, they have a Facebook group...

This is interesting. I voted for a Domestic Partnership bill here in Colorado a few years ago. I liked the bill not because it provided any status to gays but because it covered non-sexual arrangements. Under the bill, two siblings or a parent and a child or two elderly (or not elderly) friends who lived together and had a common financial interest could receive the legal benefits of marriage. The initiative failed.

I was inclined toward this for a few reasons even though I am a social conservative on a lot of issues. Marriage to me really is a religious state-of-life. The issues I associate with traditional marriage can only be enforced by conscience, not by law. Other living arrangements may have an impact on the State and so the State may have a say in their conduct. Extending this benefit to non-sexual partners sucks all the oxygen out of the homosexual argument at the same time it relieves the State from micromanaging the daily conduct of adults.

Atheists, gays, roommates, shack-ups, and caretakers would all be on a level playing field. I would hope that religious institutions would then withdraw their services and facilities from non-members when it came to any kind of ceremonial recognition of various life stages. This would save a lot of litigation and it would get non-members out of religious business.

Sacbee (http://www.sacbee.com/static/weblogs/capitolalertlatest/020530.html)

wilbur
03-11-2009, 12:18 PM
This is absolutely the most sensible solution.

The government shouldn't be recognizing partnerships based on the type of sex that may or may not be going on... but on the partnership itself.

FlaGator
03-11-2009, 01:09 PM
As I have said from the being, as long as the religions were not being forced to do something against their beliefs I would be all for it.

Gingersnap
03-11-2009, 01:35 PM
As I have said from the being, as long as the religions were not being forced to do something against their beliefs I would be all for it.

I think that churches might go along with this if the "partnerships" weren't limited to sexual relationships. This would appeal to the social justice crowd. The traditional denominations would also probably be fine with it since they typically view marriage and its obligations in a radically different way than secularists do.

Wishy-washy mainline groups would probably dither over it but they are on their out anyway.

FlaGator
03-11-2009, 01:47 PM
I think that churches might go along with this if the "partnerships" weren't limited to sexual relationships. This would appeal to the social justice crowd. The traditional denominations would also probably be fine with it since they typically view marriage and its obligations in a radically different way than secularists do.

Wishy-washy mainline groups would probably dither over it but they are on their out anyway.

My main disagreement concerned churches being sued for not performing same-sex marriages and being force to do so under anti-discrimination laws or stop performing all marriages. This seems to get around that.

aerojarod
03-11-2009, 02:15 PM
Correct. The government should not be in the business of validating or the intimate love between two consenting, non-related, adults.

Why homosexuals are so adamant about getting that validation is beyond me. There's nothing romantic about a marriage certificate. If it was purely about the tax incentives and legal rights & civil privileges extended to married heterosexuals, homosexuals couples can easily guarentee those rights for themselves and their partners through existing channels.

I would support a "domestic partnership" law for couples that cohabitate.

Gingersnap
03-11-2009, 02:24 PM
Correct. The government should not be in the business of validating or the intimate love between two consenting, non-related, adults.

Why homosexuals are so adamant about getting that validation is beyond me. There's nothing romantic about a marriage certificate. If it was purely about the tax incentives and legal rights & civil privileges extended to married heterosexuals, homosexuals couples can easily guarentee those rights for themselves and their partners through existing channels.

I would support a "domestic partnership" law for couples that cohabitate.

Why limit it to sexual relationships? I can see a great benefit (especially these days) to extending the legal advantages to caretakers and dependents as well as for friends who have opted out of the romance game but who still maintain a household together for companionship.

PoliCon
03-11-2009, 02:26 PM
domestic partnerships are the way to go. Any group of people who live together in a common household should be allowed to form a limited or extensive domestic partnership.

Phillygirl
03-11-2009, 04:42 PM
The legal recognition of marriage has been to protect the children and the dependent spouse. While the status of dependent spouse has been mitigated tremendously in the past 50 years, it is still there and still worthy of protection. The fact that a minority of homosexual partnerships have similar issues should not automatically open the door to similar legal protections.

PoliCon
03-11-2009, 04:47 PM
The legal recognition of marriage has been to protect the children and the dependent spouse. While the status of dependent spouse has been mitigated tremendously in the past 50 years, it is still there and still worthy of protection. The fact that a minority of homosexual partnerships have similar issues should not automatically open the door to similar legal protections.

they would qualify for a LIMITED domestic partnership - as would say you and your grandmother if you formed a household together.

Phillygirl
03-11-2009, 05:48 PM
they would qualify for a LIMITED domestic partnership - as would say you and your grandmother if you formed a household together.

Why should my grandmother and I be given any particular protections or benefits as a result of sharing a household?

Bubba Dawg
03-11-2009, 07:29 PM
Why should my grandmother and I be given any particular protections or benefits as a result of sharing a household?


Well, your grandmother deserves the benefit of a medal for sharing a household with you......

(runs, hides until 2012) :p:D

MrsSmith
03-11-2009, 08:41 PM
Why should my grandmother and I be given any particular protections or benefits as a result of sharing a household?

Why should 2 sexually involved men - or women - be given any particular protections as a result of sharing a household? The point to the "marriage benefits" - which can be detriments, by the way - was to assist families in producing and raising children. If we're going to extend those benefits and detriments to any 2 sexually involved adults, then why not any 2 adults? Why limit it by sexual activity?

FlaGator
03-11-2009, 08:58 PM
Why should 2 sexually involved men - or women - be given any particular protections as a result of sharing a household? The point to the "marriage benefits" - which can be detriments, by the way - was to assist families in producing and raising children. If we're going to extend those benefits and detriments to any 2 sexually involved adults, then why not any 2 adults? Why limit it by sexual activity?

And I would as way should we hold them to the same standards we hold ourselves and other Christians?

1 Corinthians 5:12-13

What business is it of mine to judge those outside the church? Are you not to judge those inside? God will judge those outside. "Expel the wicked man from among you."

Let the world do as the world will do until those who feel the need seek Christ. Then I say we extend a hand.

PoliCon
03-11-2009, 11:25 PM
Well, your grandmother deserves the benefit of a medal for sharing a household with you......

(runs, hides until 2012) :p:D
You must spread some Reputation around before giving it to Bubba Dawg againOMG! I take it all back. You are one seriously funneh ghey man!

PoliCon
03-11-2009, 11:26 PM
Why should my grandmother and I be given any particular protections or benefits as a result of sharing a household?

Fair is fair. If you give it to one group of 2 people - you have to give it to any other group of 2 people. It may be a situation where if you and Granny Shannon form a domestic union - because neither one of you can land a man and neither one of you can afford to live on your own.

PoliCon
03-11-2009, 11:27 PM
Why should 2 sexually involved men - or women - be given any particular protections as a result of sharing a household? The point to the "marriage benefits" - which can be detriments, by the way - was to assist families in producing and raising children. If we're going to extend those benefits and detriments to any 2 sexually involved adults, then why not any 2 adults? Why limit it by sexual activity?

Right. Domestic partnerships are not about sexuality - or at least shouldn't be about it.

Mythic
03-12-2009, 12:58 AM
I completely agree with Gingersnap. I don't believe that gay people should be married because marriage is in all reality a religous institution. All of the legal benefits just happen to be how the government treats that institution. Creating a type of union that is not religious at all but has virtually the same benefits for same sex couples would be fine with me.

Phillygirl
03-12-2009, 07:58 AM
Well, your grandmother deserves the benefit of a medal for sharing a household with you......

(runs, hides until 2012) :p:D

Ha!! My grandmother was just like me, only meaner! :)

Phillygirl
03-12-2009, 07:59 AM
Why should 2 sexually involved men - or women - be given any particular protections as a result of sharing a household? The point to the "marriage benefits" - which can be detriments, by the way - was to assist families in producing and raising children. If we're going to extend those benefits and detriments to any 2 sexually involved adults, then why not any 2 adults? Why limit it by sexual activity?

I happen to agree, which is why I don't agree with domestic partnerships from a legal perspective.

PoliCon
03-12-2009, 08:06 AM
I happen to agree, which is why I don't agree with domestic partnerships from a legal perspective.

So - should we take away the benefits that those without children have? What about those who have long since raised their children?

Phillygirl
03-12-2009, 08:11 AM
So - should we take away the benefits that those without children have? What about those who have long since raised their children?

Nope. The purpose of the marriage benefits (encouraging and protecting the nuclear family) still remains, even if every member doesn't actually reproduce. That doesn't mean that we dismantle the the philosophy because a minority don't have children. Nor do we apply it to other groups simply because a minority of them do reproduce.

wilbur
03-12-2009, 08:55 AM
Nope. The purpose of the marriage benefits (encouraging and protecting the nuclear family) still remains, even if every member doesn't actually reproduce. That doesn't mean that we dismantle the the philosophy because a minority don't have children. Nor do we apply it to other groups simply because a minority of them do reproduce.

Two people, regardless if they have sex or not, who agree to partner through life can provide all the same benefits as the nuclear family.... even raising kids (even if they couldn't conceive them together).

PoliCon
03-12-2009, 08:56 AM
Nope. The purpose of the marriage benefits (encouraging and protecting the nuclear family) still remains, even if every member doesn't actually reproduce. That doesn't mean that we dismantle the the philosophy because a minority don't have children. Nor do we apply it to other groups simply because a minority of them do reproduce.

I'm all for protecting marriage. I'm also all for giving everyone possible a way of getting around and away from the confiscatory taxes the government uses.

PoliCon
03-12-2009, 08:57 AM
Two people, regardless if they have sex or not, who agree to partner through life can provide all the same benefits as the nuclear family.... even raising kids (even if they couldn't conceive them together).

bullshit. Gheys like leftists and pro-abortion pseudo-conservative atheists can give an approximation but they cannot provide the real thing.

wilbur
03-12-2009, 09:07 AM
bullshit. Gheys like leftists and pro-abortion pseudo-conservative atheists can give an approximation but they cannot provide the real thing.

An approximation of what? Some ethereal concept of the ideal family that doesnt actually exist?

Many many people from any of those groups you mention ( I can't believe you starting throwing political stances and religious belief in there ) would create much better families than millions of the dysfunctional 'traditional' families out there.

The nuclear family is a concept like a pure free market... it doesnt actually exist in its true ideal form.

Phillygirl
03-12-2009, 09:39 AM
Two people, regardless if they have sex or not, who agree to partner through life can provide all the same benefits as the nuclear family.... even raising kids (even if they couldn't conceive them together).

They can provide similar benefits. But what does that have to do with anything?

Should the federal government continue to provide SS benefits to married couples? How about protection on pensions and pension beneficiaries? The same favorable tax rate on transfers of property between spouses?

What are the purposes behind the current laws? Are those same purposes properly served by providing them to non-married "couples"?

linda22003
03-12-2009, 10:39 AM
So - should we take away the benefits that those without children have?

Like what - sanity, beautiful and neat homes, and discretionary income? :p

Gingersnap
03-12-2009, 10:54 AM
Nope. The purpose of the marriage benefits (encouraging and protecting the nuclear family) still remains, even if every member doesn't actually reproduce. That doesn't mean that we dismantle the the philosophy because a minority don't have children. Nor do we apply it to other groups simply because a minority of them do reproduce.

I disagree. The original purpose of the marriage benefit was to facilitate the union of two heterosexuals who were more than likely to reproduce, raise a family, and function as grandparents at some point in time. That family provided social identity and stability and relieved the State of the burdensome job of housing, feeding, clothing, and instructing current and future citizens. That's all over now.

The State now has a vested interest in reducing its obligations to individuals while still sucking them dry for as long as possible. The "family" structure is no longer of any interest to the State since people are in increasingly unstable relationships and since the burden of caring for children is now juggled between the State and a virtually random group of parental sexual partners, former spouses, and biological parents.

While the State no longer has any interest in promoting family stability, it still does have a huge interest in not paying for any services, if possible. It's in the best interest of the State to promote any financial arrangement in which people (related or not, sexual or not) meet each other's needs in terms of care and finances. This frees up more money for taxes, fees, permits, and the like.

We left Oz quite a while ago, Philly. Try to keep up. :p

PoliCon
03-12-2009, 11:59 AM
much better families than millions of the dysfunctional 'traditional' families out there.So because some normal families are dysfunctional we should dispose of them in favor of deviancy?


The nuclear family is a concept like a pure free market... it doesnt actually exist in its true ideal form.If it doesn't - it's because of government interference and individual selfishness and irresponsibility.

wilbur
03-12-2009, 12:23 PM
So because some normal families are dysfunctional we should dispose of them in favor of deviancy?
If it doesn't - it's because of government interference and individual selfishness and irresponsibility.

You only a few posts ago:


Right. Domestic partnerships are not about sexuality - or at least shouldn't be about it.


You really are a confused ol chap arent you? We have actually been on more or less the same side this whole thread till you started going on about atheists and pro-choice people being less capable parents. At this point its not even clear what you are arguing for.

wilbur
03-12-2009, 12:29 PM
They can provide similar benefits. But what does that have to do with anything?

Should the federal government continue to provide SS benefits to married couples? How about protection on pensions and pension beneficiaries? The same favorable tax rate on transfers of property between spouses?


I'm pretty open to different possibilities here.



What are the purposes behind the current laws? Are those same purposes properly served by providing them to non-married "couples"?

Well there are several incentives... some of which only incentivize partnership and others which incentivize (or at least alleviate some of the burden of) having children. But I'm more or less with Ginger on this one.. these kinds of things are the song and dance we have to go through these days to justify keeping our own money out of the hands of the government.... which already takes more than its fair share.

As for the philosophy behind the laws and incentives... they may have been solid at one time.. but I don't see how sex based justifications for child rearing can stand up in this day and age. With modern tools for analyzing demographics I am certain... absolutely certain... we could easily devise a list of criteria that would be far better indicators of whether a couple would be 'good child rearers', other than their sexual orientation, sexual relationship, or blood relation with their partner. So if the acknowledgement of, and incentivizing of relationships by the state is simply a tool for effective child rearing... than it should be our imperative to take that philosophy where it leads us and not simply stop half-way...

Personally, I think its time to stop approaching marriage (or partnerships) in such a collectivist way. It should be a matter of personal liberties... maybe the tax breaks need to be taken out of it all together, including traditional marriages.. but such partnerships should of course come with the other benefits of marriage that make it advantageous legally.

PoliCon
03-12-2009, 04:02 PM
You only a few posts ago:


You really are a confused ol chap arent you? We have actually been on more or less the same side this whole thread till you started going on about atheists and pro-choice people being less capable parents. At this point its not even clear what you are arguing for.

Did you bother to read the conversation? I think domestic partnerships should be available to all regardless of sex or sexuality. That does NOT mean that I think for a moment that such a partnership would constitute a family. :rolleyes:

MrsSmith
03-12-2009, 05:32 PM
I'm pretty open to different possibilities here.



Well there are several incentives... some of which only incentivize partnership and others which incentivize (or at least alleviate some of the burden of) having children. But I'm more or less with Ginger on this one.. these kinds of things are the song and dance we have to go through these days to justify keeping our own money out of the hands of the government.... which already takes more than its fair share.

As for the philosophy behind the laws and incentives... they may have been solid at one time.. but I don't see how sex based justifications for child rearing can stand up in this day and age. With modern tools for analyzing demographics I am certain... absolutely certain... we could easily devise a list of criteria that would be far better indicators of whether a couple would be 'good child rearers', other than their sexual orientation, sexual relationship, or blood relation with their partner. So if the acknowledgement of, and incentivizing of relationships by the state is simply a tool for effective child rearing... than it should be our imperative to take that philosophy where it leads us and not simply stop half-way...

Personally, I think its time to stop approaching marriage (or partnerships) in such a collectivist way. It should be a matter of personal liberties... maybe the tax breaks need to be taken out of it all together, including traditional marriages.. but such partnerships should of course come with the other benefits of marriage that make it advantageous legally.
Tax breaks? Whatever. I paid a far lower percentage on my taxes as Head of Household than I do as Married. Even Mr Smith, filing as SINGLE, paid a somewhat smaller percentage. For TAXES, we'd be better off shacking up.

As for "indicators of whether a couple would be 'good child rearers', other than their sexual orientation," I have to guess you've somehow missed the plethora of studies that prove children do best when raised with their biological mother and father. We already know the most important indicator of "good child rearing."

CueSi
03-12-2009, 06:58 PM
If by nuclear family you mean mom, dad and two kids... I grew up in one of those... and... my parents are still together.

~QC

Gingersnap
03-12-2009, 07:32 PM
Did you bother to read the conversation? I think domestic partnerships should be available to all regardless of sex or sexuality. That does NOT mean that I think for a moment that such a partnership would constitute a family. :rolleyes:

Most of us are on the same side here. Those of us who are religious see marriage as a sacrament or state-of-life that can't be dictated by the State or enforced by law. Those of us who are secular see the advantage of promoting living arrangements (of most kinds) that keep people independent and out of the public trough.

Domestic partnerships eliminate the sex angle of the debate. While they won't do more to promote traditional marriage or stable shack-ups, they won't degrade marriage by making it something it is not either.