First the President calls for a Constitutional amendment banning gay marriage and now here in Michigan some Oakland County Republicans want one for the State Constitution as well. This is one of those issues that I have a hard time seeing as anything other than a perfect example of Church being intertwined with State. Can anyone give me any rational explanation that doesn’t involve religion in any way as to why two people of the same sex who love each other and want to spend the rest of their lives together shouldn’t be allowed to marry? Just one good reason that isn’t grounded in religion?
Because once you move past the issue of marriage as a religious exercise it becomes a matter of legal rights granted by the State. As an atheist I didn’t get married because it was the right thing to do in the eyes of God, but because of the legal rights it grants to my wife and I. Things such as the ability to have her covered under my employer’s medical plan, the right to make determinations about my health care if I should become disabled, the rights to my property should I be killed and so on. As icing on the cake it served as a symbol of the commitment I have for her. Religion had nothing to do with it. Most of the gay men and women that I know and have spoken with on this topic are pretty much of the same frame of mind. It’s the legal status and rights marriage endows that they want to be able to share with their partners, most don’t care if the church approves of it. Churches shouldn’t have to perform gay marriages if they don’t want to. I didn’t get married in a church for obvious reasons.
The simple fact is that a marriage is an act between two people who feel enough love for each other that they are willing to commit to a legally binding contract that brings with it many responsibilities as well as benefits. Whether or not those two people are of the same sex or not shouldn’t be an issue as long a they are serious about the responsibilities they are committing to. Marriage as a “sacred institution” is a pretty piss-poor argument in the face of a 58% divorce rate among heterosexuals. Can’t be that sacred if people give up on it that readily. There’s a part of me that wonders if all this homophobic fear shown by so many straight people over gays getting married is a reflection of their deep-seated fear that the gays might be better at marriage than they are. Wouldn’t surprise me.