The Reverend


I have a problem with the conservative right's argument that the reason gay couples must be refused the right to marry is because that would change the definition of marriage. I never have really gotten that one.



Tell me, what was the official definition of marriage before Loving v Virginia? The Loving case was settled in 1967. But what was the official definition, the only acceptable, definition of marriage before Loving? Marriage was defined, before Loving, as a union of a white male and a white female or a black male and a black female, was it not?



Point being that the case that was before the Supremes in oral arguments yesterday has already been down this 'marriage definition' road before. What used to be defined before 1967 as only being the union of a white male and white female or black male and black female CHANGED. The definition of marriage changed in the U.S. back in 1967...at least legally, and that's all that matters here.



Was it or was it not discriminatory to deny inter-racial couples the legal right to marry prior to 1967? Of course it was discriminatory. State governments were allowed to deny inter-racial couples the legal part of that pursuit-of-happiness thing. They were being singled out for unequal treatment under the law because of religious complaints, It's the same with gay couples today. In both instances, a single identified group of Americans, and for no apparent government interest, have been denied equal justice. That's the very reason DOMA was overthrown.



Anyway, with those ramblings in mind, consider what the lawyer supporting state bans on gay marriages tried to argue yesterday.....



“When you change the definition of marriage,” Bursch declared, that has “consequences.”



When the U.S. changed the definition of marriage back in 1967 to include inter-racial marriages....what were the consequences? That's right, there were no consequences other than, after the Loving case, adults who loved each other but were of a different race, could then marry. The consequences were that American couples of different races were no longer discriminated against by their state, local and federal government. Let freedom ring, right? Yeah, consequences....but positive ones for our country and its citizens.



But to show you how weak....flimsy, really....the argument is defending the banning of gay marriages...get a load of this....



When pressed to explain the consequences, Bursch asked the Court to consider two different couples, one of which believes that marriage exists for the benefit of children, and the other which believes that it exists to foster relationships between adults. If the Court adopts the view of the second couple — a position he claimed the justices would implicitly embrace if they allowed same-sex couples, who cannot procreate, to marry — that will send the message that marriage has little to do with children, which will in turn lead to more children being born out-of-wedlock. The “reasonable voter,” Bursch insisted, could conclude that it was necessary to ban same-sex couples from marrying in order to halt this attenuated chain of events that allegedly ends in more children being born to unmarried couples.



Know any heterosexual married couples who don't have any children? Sure you do. Procreation has never been a requirement for marriage rights. I mean, seriously, WTF?



But I can't make heads or tails out of the rest of the mess there. What marriage "has to do with" is none of the government's concern. The hypothetical was not just phucked up, and I mean royally, it was stupid, ignorant, and that level of argumentation should never, ever, rise to the level of the Supreme Court. It's embarrassing.



Heterosexual couples are not harmed in any way by extending equality to gays.....and I think Kennedy will be our man to make that clear in what I expect will be another 5-4 decision come June, one that will extend equal justice to yet another openly discriminated against group of citizens.