First Gay Divorce In Offing?

|

One of the first gay couples to marry legally in Massachusetts may be splitting up. The Associated Press reports that Julie and Hillary Goodridge are now amicably living apart. Will the gay divorce rate eventually reach the 40 percent mark achieved by straights? Would that make them "normal?"

NEXT: English-only cheesesteak war settled

Editor's Note: We invite comments and request that they be civil and on-topic. We do not moderate or assume any responsibility for comments, which are owned by the readers who post them. Comments do not represent the views of Reason.com or Reason Foundation. We reserve the right to delete any comment for any reason at any time. Report abuses.

  1. See? Teh gays have ruined marriage.

  2. I can only imagine what kind of vile vitriol the theocrats will spew over this.

  3. Wasn’t there an old movie called The Gay Divorcee? What a remarkably prescient piece of science fiction (I assume).

  4. Now, will social conservatives fight this divorce or encourage it?

  5. As I’ve said before, the best argument against gay marriages is gay divorces. Just think about the Liza Minelli-David Gest fiasco.

  6. It wasn’t a real marriage to begin with, so I don’t give a shit. Of course, straight divorce and gay marriage are two symptoms of the same disease, which is a flippant attitude towards marriage in general.

  7. If a gay copuple divorces, is that good or bad for the sanctity of marriage? I’m confused.

  8. Doesn’t it mean that marriage is bad for gays?

  9. It wasn’t a real marriage to begin with, so I don’t give a shit. Of course, straight divorce and gay marriage are two symptoms of the same disease, which is a flippant attitude towards marriage in general.

    So why do the theocrats care if they get married in the first place? If it’s not really marriage, and it doesn’t matter if they get divorced, why should it matter if it happens in the first place?

  10. What exactly is a real marriage?

  11. crimethink,

    For a guy who doesn’t care you sure sound like you care.

  12. Mick,

    Marraige is what individuals want it to be.

  13. I predict gay divorce will exceed 60% within three years of gay marriage. Further, I predict dykes will divorce more than fags (twice as many women to become dissatisfied with the union).

  14. Marraige is what individuals want it to be.

    No, if that were so there would be nothing to argue over. The state grants/recognizes special rights, privileges, and responsibilities to married people. From the state’s point of view marriage is a special contract that is well defined and respected by law.

  15. In Canada, we’ve had gay divorce for some time now. I haven’t heard any statistics regarding divorce rates for straight vs. gay couples.

    This article claims that there is no real discrepancy among divorce rates in the Netherlands:
    http://www.news24.com/News24/World/News/0,,2-10-1462_1685059,00.html

  16. Of course, straight divorce and gay marriage are two symptoms of the same disease, which is a flippant attitude towards marriage in general.

    Actually, I think it has more to do with the fact that, whether we admit it or not, we can’t bring ourselves to fuck the same person the rest of our lives despite society’s ridiculous expectations for monogamy.

  17. Appropos of nothing, I think that gay divorce rates will be higher among men, lower among women. Just my .2 cents.

  18. Phil Lip,

    I really don’t care about the gay divorce. But I do care about the govt endorsing homosexual relationships as equivalent to heterosexual ones. Yes, I know it doesn’t affect me or my (hypothetical) marriage. The Ten Commandments display in Roy Moore’s courthouse wasn’t hurting any atheist’s worldview either, but they still rightly objected to it as an endorsement of religion.

    Akira,

    Well, if you can’t handle lifelong monogamy, don’t get married. That’s what I meant about a flippant attitude; most people just see it as a formality for society to endorse their (usually pre-existing) sexual relationship, not the formidable commitment that it should be.

  19. Disclosure: I would prefer that govt stay totally out of marriage, and make it a purely contractual matter; if two women, or two men wanted to sign a contract that was essentially the same as a marriage contract, I’d have no legal problem with it, whether or not there is a sexual relationship or not.

    Are we allowed to drink for that?

  20. “vile vitriol”

    Is there such a thing as pleasant vitriol?

  21. Help me out with this:

    The child figured prominently in the Goodridges’ case. When Julie Goodridge gave birth by cesarean section, there were complications. Hillary Goodridge, at the time having no legal relationship with mother or child, said she was barred several times from seeing her daughter and partner.

    “Even though their number one priority was their daughter,” Breslauer said, “marriage makes her also their legal obligation. Their daughter is more protected because they are married.”

    ==

    Two adults. They decide to get married. Kid involved… the kid is ‘more protected because they’re married’. Why? By the ultimate logic of this statement, I must assume that she means that the child is more protected FROM THE PARENTS. If two people who have a child get married, then divorced and it’s a mature, amicable split with equal parenting duties…there’s no danger to the child. However, if there’s a fight, and the parents get nasty, then almost every court in the land acts ‘in the best interest of the child’. So gay people (or this spokesperson in particular) is suggesting that by allowing gay people to get married, we’re protecting children
    from…gay parents? All because “marriage makes the daughter their legal obligation.”? This begins to smack of “I need the state to keep me from hurting my child.”

  22. So gay people (or this spokesperson in particular) is suggesting that by allowing gay people to get married, we’re protecting children from…gay parents?

    http://www.acpeds.org/?CONTEXT=art&cat=22&art=50

    Are children reared by two individuals of the same gender as well adjusted as children reared in families with a mother and a father? Until recently the unequivocal answer to this question was “no.” Policymakers, social scientists, the media, and even physician organizations1, however, are now asserting that prohibitions on parenting by homosexual couples should be lifted. In making such far-reaching, generation-changing assertions, any responsible advocate would rely upon supporting evidence that is comprehensive and conclusive. Not only is this not the situation, but also there is sound evidence that children exposed to the homosexual lifestyle may be at increased risk for emotional, mental, and even physical harm.

    Risks of Homosexual Lifestyle to Children

    Violence among homosexual partners is two to three times more common than among married heterosexual couples. 10,11,12,13,14 Homosexual partnerships are significantly more prone to dissolution than heterosexual marriages with the average homosexual relationship lasting only two to three years. 15,16,17 Homosexual men and women are reported to be inordinately promiscuous involving serial sex partners, even within what are loosely-termed “committed relationships.” 18,19,20,21,22 Individuals who practice a homosexual lifestyle are more likely than heterosexuals to experience mental illness,23,24,25 substance abuse,26 suicidal tendencies,27,28 and shortened life spans.29 Although some would claim that these dysfunctions are a result of societal pressures in America, the same dysfunctions exist at inordinately high levels among homosexuals in cultures were the practice is more widely accepted.30 Children reared in homosexual households are more likely to experience sexual confusion, practice homosexual behavior, and engage in sexual experimentation. 31,32,33,34,35 Adolescents and young adults who adopt the homosexual lifestyle, like their adult counterparts, are at increased risk of mental health problems, including major depression, anxiety disorder, conduct disorder, substance dependence, and especially suicidal ideation and suicide attempts.36

    All because “marriage makes the daughter their legal obligation.”?
    It’s for the lawyers.

  23. “Of course, straight divorce and gay marriage are two symptoms of the same disease, which is a flippant attitude towards marriage in general.”

    When gay people stand in their church, surrounded by their families, and pledge eternal union to each other, they’re being flippant.

    It’s really about dressing up.

    Nice, crimethink. Ever known any gay couple’s who’ve gotten married?

  24. Paul, “Two adults. They decide to get married. Kid involved… the kid is ‘more protected because they’re married’. Why?”

    Why, the answer is right in the hospital example you cited; establishing a legal relationship between the parents, and between each of the parents and the child, establishes certain protections under the law, such as hospital visitation, that benefit the family as a whole and the child specifically.

    One rejoinder to this is to point out that the non-biological parent can just adopt to address that particular issue. But the rights of a child, the protections under the law available to her as they relate to her family, should be recognized by the state and by society whether her parents get around to that particular piece of the paperwork or not.

    Another rejoinder is that it makes some people’s tummies upset when the familial arrangements of godfosaken sodomites are shown afforded any respect or recognition. Personally, I find the principles of familial integrity and the extension of that class of legal protections to kids who happen to be raised in a gay household a little more convincing. But then, it doesn’t make my tummy hurt.

  25. “First Gay Divorce In Offing?”

    Where or what is “Offing”?
    Sounds like a quaint NJ tradition to me.
    The deeper question is, during “Oning,” which gender is on top?

    smacky,
    Need input here.

  26. Ever known any gay couple’s who’ve gotten married?

    Possibly. I purge them from my memory once they get “married”, so I wouldn’t know.

  27. crimethink – what does that mean? That you are so offended by homosexuals that get “married” that you no longer can even feign that they exist?

    So a clump of cells, without any thoughts or feelings should be afforded the same rights as a human being, but fags should be purged from memory?

  28. I think he’s just being flippant, Lowdog.

  29. Lowdog,

    That was kind of a silly Buddhist joke*, in response to a silly question from joe.

    I could have responded seriously, that I was referring to society’s attitude toward marriage, not homosexuals’ attitudes towards their relationships. But hey I wanted to try some flippancy myself.

    * If a Buddhist monk leaves the monastery, the other monks will “purge him from their memory,” in the words of some book I read recently…

  30. Akira MacKenzie wrote:

    Actually, I think it has more to do with the fact that, whether we admit it or not, we can’t bring ourselves to fuck the same person the rest of our lives despite society’s ridiculous expectations for monogamy.

    God, your species is weird. Monogamy? That’s fucked up. What’s wrong with you?

    On my planet, we fuck the birds and the bees — and we float like butterflies while doing so.

  31. joe wrote:

    One rejoinder to this is to point out that […]
    Another rejoinder is that […]

    All I know is, girl-girl action is hot. Unless they’re both truly visually unpleasant.

    Maybe I’m alone in this.

  32. Ruthless wrote:

    Where or what is “Offing”?

    Sounds like a quaint NJ tradition to me.

    Ohhhhh, you were referring to organized crime, like Goodfellas.

    See, at first I thought you were talking about, like, if my wife’s on a business trip, I “off” myself two or three times a day.

    Sorry.

  33. gyromancist,
    Do you love “The Hover” by Gerard Manly Hopkins?
    Is the hover what we call the kestrel?
    How many species of birds get it on in flight?
    How appealing is that concept to us Manly Hopkins vestals here?:
    No foreplay.
    No cuddling.
    Here’s to the birds.
    Oh, hi, smacky.

  34. Who gets custody? The father?

  35. Ruthless wrote:

    How many species of birds get it on in flight?
    […]
    No foreplay.
    No cuddling.
    Here’s to the birds.

    He had the right idea.

    And you thought all that white stuff on the windshield of your car was just shit.

  36. Actually, I think it has more to do with the fact that, whether we admit it or not, we can’t bring ourselves to fuck the same person the rest of our lives despite society’s ridiculous expectations for monogamy.

    Getting married does not mean you have to “fuck the same person the rest of our lives.” From my married friends, I get the impression that the fucking pretty much goes away after the second year.

    (I’m joking.) (For the most part.) (But really, I am.)

  37. crimethink – gotcha…my bad.

  38. Why, the answer is right in the hospital example you cited; establishing a legal relationship between the parents, and between each of the parents and the child, establishes certain protections under the law, such as hospital visitation, that benefit the family as a whole and the child specifically.

    Joe, I didn’t pay much attention to that issue, because to me, it was a minor technical detail that could easily be solved should government get out of the “ye be partners” bidness.

    The issues that I was interpreting from the (and I still assert) rather bizarre quote from the ‘spokesperson’ were much larger. Bigger picture stuff.

    For instance, joe, regardless of where one stands on gay marriage, it is true in fact that large numbers of people get ‘together’ and even have children without marriage. The courts seem to ferret out the issues regardless. One need only look at Hollywood as their example. Ok, maybe that wasn’t such a great place to start, but I think you get my point.

    Your explanation hasn’t illuminated (me) as to why these people in question– the specific people– are going to treat their child better because the state recognizes their union.

    Sure, in gay marriages both partners can’t be ‘biological’ parents so yes, one parent might traditionally get ‘screwed’ in the childcare arrangement. To that, I say welcome to being the male half of the biological parent set. Been going on for years. Call me cynical, but most experts agree that men are largely the ‘sperm donor’ when it comes to the courts view of parenthood. Yes, it’s changing, but way too slowly.

  39. I can only imagine what kind of vile vitriol the theocrats will spew over this.
    Kip, I’ve been in a thread all day on this at Redstate, and they’re using it as you might expect: proof that liberals’ destruction of marriage is nearly complete; society will now begin its freefall into Hell (or France, depending on how right-wing you are). I haven’t the stomach for Free Republic today, so I don’t know what they’re doing with it.

    Ah Mr. F. Le Mur, my favorite gay-hater. More quotes from the ACP, an organization whose mission statement is, “Our old group didn’t hate gays enough, so we quit and formed our own!”
    Any group that seriously uses the term “homosexual lifestyle” pretty much gives away their bias right there.

  40. Paul, I can offer a bit of light here, I think, but it in no way illuminates why government does this stuff best. Let’s say that given today’s legal world, kids are better served by married parents because the moms’ roles are understood from the start, and both have legal protection and obligation. This does not ward against some protracted custody battle, of course, but it eliminates long months/years of legal battle to even determine who the parents are. I’m pretty sure this is to the benefit of the kid. This removes possibilities like vengeful grandparents coming in, inheritance issues, etc. The family structure is “known” to the court, and that should help with the sad and depressing legal process of dismembering of the family. Easy? No. Fun? No. But maybe 1/100th less painful.

  41. I do care about the govt endorsing homosexual relationships as equivalent to heterosexual ones.

    Yikes. I should just give up trying to find love, and slit my wrists already. Thanks for pointing out my inferiority.

  42. most people just see it as a formality for society to endorse their (usually pre-existing) sexual relationship, not the formidable commitment that it should be.

    “most people?” I’ve been to dozens of weddings and know an awful lot of married people, and I don’t know a single person who sees marriage this way. Even the handful of divorced people I know took their marriage very, very seriously, and its dissolution was quite traumatic.

    I think maybe you’re reading the gossip pages too much, crimethink. Really, the vast majority of people think marriage is a huge commitment.

  43. Rhywun–be strong. 🙂

    I like the gay threads here on H&R not only for the libertarian perspective (natch), but for the relative peace and quiet from the gay-haters. Compared to freaks out there on some sites, our anti-gay trolls here are cute by comparison, kind of like giggling at seeing a kitten stalking a beetle after watching a lion take out a deer.

  44. Brian24: Exactly, and this is where the wingers have it correct: society does place a value on marriage, and it is supposed to and does mean something. The “heteros only” sign on the door is a problem, but it is where the whole society-supports-the-institution-supports-the-society thing comes into play.

  45. “Another rejoinder is that it makes some people’s tummies upset when the familial arrangements of godfosaken sodomites are shown afforded any respect or recognition.”

    isn’t that a built-in extra? like getting your pie a la mode?

    i love my catholic peeps, but the whole “i don’t hate homosexuals, i just think they’re not as good as everyone else” thing is just super duper gay.

  46. Warren,

    The state grants/recognizes special rights, privileges, and responsibilities to married people. From the state’s point of view marriage is a special contract that is well defined and respected by law.

    I’ll grant that all of this is true, but my statement is still correct. Or are you suggesting that just because the government does X, that means that the government’s opinion is right? What’s the presumption here? That the government is correct or that the individual is correct?

    crimethink,

    But I do care about the govt endorsing homosexual relationships as equivalent to heterosexual ones. Yes, I know it doesn’t affect me or my (hypothetical) marriage. The Ten Commandments display in Roy Moore’s courthouse wasn’t hurting any atheist’s worldview either, but they still rightly objected to it as an endorsement of religion.

    So you are suggesting or claiming that you have some unenumerated right here equivalent to the religion clauses of the First Amendment?

    That’s what I meant about a flippant attitude; most people just see it as a formality for society to endorse their (usually pre-existing) sexual relationship, not the formidable commitment that it should be.

    Ahh, normative claims. Based on what?

  47. I do agree with this statement from crimethink:

    “I would prefer that govt stay totally out of marriage, and make it a purely contractual matter; if two women, or two men wanted to sign a contract that was essentially the same as a marriage contract, I’d have no legal problem with it, whether or not there is a sexual relationship or not.”

  48. Adam W.,

    How can government stay completely out of marraige even under the “purely a contractual matter” standard asserted by crimethink? Contracts, after all, are enforced by the government under our system of law.

    Further, one could argue that because the government wouldn’t be prohibiting gay marraige it would necessarily be endorsing it.

  49. Wait, it took 8 months for the first gay divorce to happen? Shall we compare this rate to the straight divorce rate?

    Or would an interjection of facts be too gauche?

  50. Further, I predict dykes will divorce more than fags (twice as many women to become dissatisfied with the union).

    My, my, the grapes are sour today.

    most people just see it as a formality for society to endorse their (usually pre-existing) sexual relationship, not the formidable commitment that it should be.

    I see marriage as an opportunity to get lots and lots of free fondue sets. But I don’t care for fondue, so I’ll just keep dragging society down with my cohabitatin’ ways.

  51. Jen,
    you person who lives in sin you!

  52. But I’m with those who think that govt should get out of the marriage bidness. I mean why are gay people more special than poligamists?

    Also, why is someone who is married more special than me if they have a kid by accident, or on purpose?

    The more I think about it the more statist I think the gay marriage thing is. They want to be a special group recognized by the govt? Why should they?

  53. Paul,

    “Joe, I didn’t pay much attention to that issue, because to me, it was a minor technical detail…”

    I rather suspect that if it was you being kept from seeing your wife and new child as she was giving birth, you wouldn’t consider it a minor technical detail.

    “…that could easily be solved should government get out of the “ye be partners” bidness.”

    Actually, no. The government requires hospitals to allow spouses and immediate family into the room.

    “Your explanation hasn’t illuminated (me) as to why these people in question– the specific people– are going to treat their child better because the state recognizes their union.”

    That’s because the comment wasn’t about the parents treating their children better; that was your misreading. The comment was about establishing the rights and responsibilities of parenthood, which are the basis of the protections under the law that the government extends to married couples and their families.

  54. The more I think about it the more statist I think the gay marriage thing is. They want to be a special group recognized by the govt? Why should they?

    I view it merely as their wanting the same recognition others get. I agree that the government should get out of the free-fondue-set business, but since it’s going to meddle it should offer equal opportunity for all.

    Think of it this way: I think the government should get out of the pharmaceuticals business; you should be able to buy any damn medication you want, without first going through an official government gatekeeper. But so long as the gatekeeper system in in effect all should be treated equally, rather than have the government apply discriminatory laws like “Straight people can be pharmacists but gay people can’t.” And if gays started lobbying for the right to become pharmacists, I would not view that as gay people demanding special privileges, but demanding the same privileges the government stingily doles out to others.

  55. kwais,

    “I mean why are gay people more special than poligamists?”

    I realize this is a very conservative, sexually-normative defense of gay marriage, but here goes:

    Because in a marriage, whether between two gay people or two straight people, the two become one and cleave together as one flesh. They foresake all others, yadda yadda yadda. Marriage is an instution with certain pre-existing characteristics, primary among which is the element of two-becoming-one. Gay marriage fits this bill, and polygamy doesn’t.

    For example, if one spouse dies, the other becomes the custodial parent, and has certain presumptive rights in inheretance. If one spouse gets sick, the other one is considered nextg of kin in making medical decisions. A gay marriage fits this model, while a polygamist one doesn’t.

    In short, a gay marriage is a real marriage because it functions like a real marriage, and a polygamist union is not, because it does not. Expanding marriage to include gay people would amount to allowing more people to avail themselves of the existing institution, while expanding it to include polygamy would not.

    Sort of like if incest rules were struck down – a marriage that would occur between a woman and her nephew (ewwww, ick) would operate just like anyone else’s marriage. Or when miscengenation laws were struck down – the marriages that ensued were just like any other marriage, with two spouses forming a family.

  56. joe,

    Marriage is an instution with certain pre-existing characteristics, primary among which is the element of two-becoming-one.

    Yet, many societies, have recognized polygamy as a proper marraige form. So it seems that this “two becoming one” deal isn’t as “primary” as you think that it is.

  57. I think people who choose to live the gay lifestyle do so for a lot of reasons not the least of which is the desire to opt out of straight society and its conventions. People like Andrew Sullivan who think that gay marriage is the way to combat things like prosmescuity, and rampant STDs in the gay community are kidding themselves. I really think that the states ought to recognize gay marriage. When they do, there will be a rush by gays to get married to prove a point and use their new found rights. after the initial rush, the number of new gay marriages will plummet and most of the old ones will end in divorce and after a decade or so people will wonder what the big deal was and most gays will wonder why the older generation was so keen on getting married. Like most things, if you just give people freedom, the issue will solve itself.

  58. Why does anyone care much?
    Newspaper filler.

  59. Philly,

    I’m not claiming the existing definition/understanding of marriage in our society is eternal and universal. It has certainly undergone both evolutionary and revolutionary changes over the past few thousand years.

    My point is that we have such a definition/understanding, and gay couples can be incorporated into that understanding without significantly altering how the institution functions.

    John, I imagine that “people who choose to live the homosexual lifestyle” will see very high divorce rates if they enter into gay marriages.

    The other 99.9% of gay people – the ones for whom no real choice is involved – will probably form much more stable unions.

    But I do admire both your recognition that this is a freedom issue, and your commitment to that freedom. It’s easy for someone like me, who does believe that gay people should live lives that are true to their nature, to support reforming marriage laws. But for you to do so, out of a commitment to freedom and a willingness to cede control even when you know people will use that freedom to do things you disapprove of, is admirable.

    See, I don’t disapprove of homophobia per se. It’s just what homophobes do…;-)

    Uncle sam, I’m concerned about this for the same reason the Freedom Riders were concerned about Jim Crow; I believe the push for freedom needs to be continual or our society will harden into fascism, and because it offends my personal morality when I see bully picking on someone weaker.

  60. There is a difference between a civil marriage and a marriage in a church. The church is more symbolic, while the civil marriage now means tax breaks and other legal benefits can occur.
    There should be no civil marriages. What’s to keep two friends from getting “married” just to have tax breaks until they’re ready to settle down with someone later.

  61. joe,

    Actually, no. The government requires hospitals to allow spouses and immediate family into the room.

    Well, assuming you consider regulating such things a legitimate role of govt, the law could be changed so that anyone whom the patient has granted “close friend status” or something, would be required to be admitted. This nature of the relationship would not be important from a legal standpoint, and thus this would not constitute government endorsement.

  62. Phil Lip,

    How can government stay completely out of marraige even under the “purely a contractual matter” standard asserted by crimethink?

    It would be enforcing the contract, but not treating it differently from any other contract. Since this type of contract could be entered into by any group of people, even groups where no sexual relationship is desired or foreseen, it would have no correlation with the traditional idea of marriage (whatever that is).

  63. Joe,
    I mean why does anyone care much that they got divorced?

  64. crimethink,

    “Well, assuming you consider regulating such things a legitimate role of govt, the law could be changed so that anyone whom the patient has granted “close friend status” or something, would be required to be admitted.”

    That sounds reasonable enough, until you consider the practicalities of such a thing. Take the hospital visitation issue, and multiply it by about 700. And even if you achieve all those changes in government, you’re still putting 700 mandates on each family, and denying protections under the law to people, including the kids, if the parents didn’t get around to having that particular set of papers drawn up.

    I don’t think your offense at “the gay lifestyle” justifies creating such a Rube Goldbert rights machine. We have an existing institution to take care of those familial rights and protect kids; let’s just use that.

  65. crimethink, about this hostility of yours towards the symbolic endorsement aspect of gay marriage:

    Do you know the difference between the Vermont Supreme Court ruling and that of the Massachusetts Supreme Judicial Court? They both found that the marriage laws violated the equal protection doctrine, but there was a difference in their reasoning about the remedy. The Vermont court ordered the legislature to modify the law to provide a means of guaranteeing that protections under the law were equally applied, whether through civil unions or full marriage recognition. The legislature chose the former, guaranteeing all the protections that the law gives to married couples to civil-unioned couples as well. The court was fine with that.

    In Massachusetts, the majority considered and rejected the civil unions remedy, for the following reason: because creating a different, seperate-but-equal institution would put a stigma on the civil-unioned couples. It would be a lesser institution, a not-marriage, and people would perceive it as such. If this happened, the SJC reasoned, the gay spouses and their kids would be denied the “social esteem” of being in a “real” family. People would feel different about them, and about their relationship, because the state didn’t confer the title “marriage” to its civil union.

    I didn’t like that part of the ruling. Hospital visitation, inheritance, tax filing options – those are protections under the law. How people feel about your relationship, to my mind, isn’t a protection under the law. Don’t misunderstand, I agree with the court that full marriage is better than a civil union law, mainly because I don’t want to see sloppy, complicated legal institutions created out of whole cloth just to keep the scarlet A visible on teh gays. But I disagree with the reasoning that folds it into equal protection.

    And for the same reason, I have to reject the argument that we have to keep gay people’s marriages seperate-but-equal in order to satisfy those who don’t want the government to signal any approval of being gay. The proposal you’re making, a complicated way to achieve equal rights under the law while denying that the marriage being recognized is really a marriage, is an attempt to use the marriage license to influence how people feel about homosexuals and their families. And I don’t that’s a legitimate function of government.

  66. joe,

    Though I didn’t make it explicit, I would include both “close friend status” people AND immediate family members as those required admission to hospital rooms. ie, replace “spouse” with person with “close friend status”.

    As for having to change 700 laws, well, that’ll give our restless legislators something to do with their time, instead of passing more laws to fuck with my money and my life.

  67. crimethink,

    It would be enforcing the contract, but not treating it differently from any other contract.

    There is a heck of a lot that goes into enforcing a contract that involves the judgment of the state.

  68. Yet, many societies, have recognized polygamy as a proper marraige form.

    Didn’t this usually take the form of an older dude collecting child brides? I.e. not consensual, and not a good counter-argument.

    I think people who choose to live the gay lifestyle do so for a lot of reasons not the least of which is the desire to opt out of straight society and its conventions.

    Your idea that gays “choose to live the gay lifestyle” is a pretty old-fashioned way to look at it, from a time back when society expected gays to live a sham heterosexual lifestyle, complete with unwanted wife and kids.

    Secondly, while the proportion of gays who “desire to opt out of straight society and its conventions” might be higher than that of straights who also wish to flout convention — and are certainly the most visible and vocal exhibits on display to middle America — such a desire is by no means a defining characteristic of gays. Most gays today aren’t forced into straight society and its conventions any more, and in fact experience only the exclusion from these conventions (e.g. marriage) which they would find beneficial.

  69. crimthink,

    “As for having to change 700 laws, well, that’ll give our restless legislators something to do with their time, instead of passing more laws to fuck with my money and my life.”

    You’re being flippant.

  70. One thing for sure.

    This is good for lawyers.

  71. If gay marriage was legal, would that mean my roomate and I would have a common law marriage?

    I keed, of course.

  72. joe

    You wrote

    I rather suspect that if it was you being kept from seeing your wife and new child as she was giving birth, you wouldn’t consider it a minor technical detail.

    ==

    This raises an interesting point, and it got me to thinking about something. Aside from a marriage license which is god knows where, I have no proof that my wife is my wife. None. She kept her maiden name. I carry no documentation to the fact of marriage, none whatsoever. The only thing I can think of that would ‘prove’ that I was the husband in the context of staring at some surly nurse is that our drivers license has the same address– or at least it does now– or our checks have both our names on them. The same would be true of a gay couple. Both would have the same address. This isn’t a legal issue, this *is* a minor technical detail. The only reason I was allowed into the room when my wife gave birth was because my wife said “This is my husband.” There was no, and is no process for the Hospital to verify that fact. Again, no need for the government to be involved. The above issue is something that’s handled by a surly nurse- not a legal scholar. The hospital could easily change its policy to say “Domestic partners”. Did they allow Kurt Russel into the room when Goldie Hawn was giving birth? I’d bet so. They were never married.

    “…that could easily be solved should government get out of the “ye be partners” bidness.”

    Actually, no. The government requires hospitals to allow spouses and immediate family into the room.

    ==
    Actually yes. As I said– tons of people have children who are never married- yet these details get worked out.

    Again, a nearly unenforcable mandate. Yes, three months down the road you could sue the hospital for not allowing you in, but unless you can prove the fact while your ‘partners’ water is breaking– it’s an act of social convention- not the law.

    Paul

Please to post comments

Comments are closed.