Gay Marriage

The Creepy Statism of Utah's Defense of Traditional Marriage

Won't somebody think of the children? And of having more and more and more of them?


Gay marriage will result in kids born without faces!
© Rudolf Tittelbach |

Attorneys for the state of Utah have filed their initial argument, readable here (pdf), at the federal appeals court in order to defend the state's ban on recognizing gay marriages. The 100-page opus can simply be summarized as "It's for the children!"

At the National Review Online's blog, Michael T. Worley summarizes the 15 consequences presented by the Utah to justify the state's involvement in deciding who can and cannot get married. The summary is extremely useful in seeing exactly how certain types of conservatives are just as statist as progressives. In fact many of the arguments have absolutely nothing to do with gay people at all and are all about the state making sure heterosexual people don't get confused or silly ideas about how to have a family if the government doesn't tell them how to do it.

Consider the main thrusts of their fears:

1. "First, as many commentators have observed, because procreation is an inherently gendered affair, redefining marriage in genderless terms would break the critical conceptual link between marriage and procreation. . . . Given the manifest ills of fatherless parenting, the State has a compelling interest in sending a powerful message to women that, whenever possible, marriage to the fathers of their children is very important to the welfare of those children and to society itself."

2. "Second, for similar reasons, the loss of the State's clear message in favor of biological mother-father parenting within marriage would likely result in a higher percentage of couples conceiving children without the stability that marriage would otherwise bring."

3. "Third, replacing the child-centric or 'conjugal' view of marriage with a more adult-centric view would undermine the existing social norm that often leads parents in acceptable but not ideal marriages to make self-sacrifices and remain married to the parents of their children."

4. "Fourth, by shifting the understanding of marriage to a more adult-centric view, the redefinition ordered by the district court would also undermine the current social norm (weakened though it may be) that those who wish to have children—or to engage in conduct that could lead to children—should get married."

Yes, the main arguments against recognizing gay marriages is that it will somehow result in fewer marriages. Because heterosexual women will get confused somehow about what marriage is or whether they want one because they aren't getting clear messages from "the state" about what "the state" wants them to do and not because they do or do not want to be married. (And isn't it creepy that it's the women who need the messages about marriage and not the men?)

It gets even creepier:

"Fifth, and most obviously, a genderless definition of marriage would likely increase the number of children being raised by same-sex parents. That could happen because the couple decides to raise together an existing child of one of the partners. Or it could result from the conception of a new child through surrogacy or sperm-donation. Either way, such children will not benefit from the State's preferred mother-father parenting model; often they will have no way of knowing even the identity of both biological parents. And recent evidence on same-sex parenting, while not conclusive, indicates that same-sex parenting arrangements are less effective than married biological mothers and fathers in producing positive outcomes in the lives of their children."

"The State's preferred mother-father parenting model" sounds borderline socialist. Whether or not a child knows his or her biological parents is also not the state's business—are they going to outlaw adoption, too? Really, the state is mostly just asserting that it needs to play a role.

And yes, the widely discredited Mark Regnerus study is referenced. That's the study that compared a wide variety of different kinds of gay familes, whether they were partnered, single, divorced, or what have you, only to stable, married heterosexual families. I wrote about the awfulness of the study's "science" back in 2012.

Also, one of the fears listed as a potential bad consequence of recognizing gay marriage? It's the perpetuation of libertarian views about privatizing marriage! Horrors!

11. "To the extent a genderless marriage definition encourages the further abandonment—or privatization—of marriage, it would  almost certainly reduce birthrates. Studies have shown that cohabiting couples tend to produce fewer children on average than married couples do—perhaps because the resulting instability makes the participants less willing to bring children into the mix. Thus, if overall marriage rates decline further, birthrates would likely decline as well."

The weirdest argument spread throughout is fear that the government needs to make sure birthrates and fertility stay up. The drop in birthrates in Western countries (and even non-Western countries!) is a function of improving economic security and safety. It is not a cause for concern (other than for our poorly-thought-out entitlement systems) and is evidence of the world becoming a better place, not a worse place. Neither Utah, nor America, is in any danger of running out of people. Also, worrying about families having children outside the state-favored marital arrangements and then pivoting to worrying about families not having children outside the state-favored marital arrangements doesn't exactly make a coherent case.

NEXT: The Rand Paul/Ron Paul Disconnect on Drugs

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  1. Finally someone is putting to legal argument what we all have known for years. If legally recognized, many women will accidentally – or maybe even on purpose in some cases – marry other women and then they won’t be able to have babies or if they do somehow have babies (you never know where science is going) then those babies won’t have fathers and the state will then have to reluctantly be the father.

    1. Apparently they can just make the donor pay child support.

      1. ‘I donated genetic material, and that was it’

        Well, to be fair, I’ve donated my genetic material a few times… I’m thinking the totality of circs plays a part.

    2. Oh, I think the state would enthusiastically be our father, if only we’d let it.

      1. I don’t think it’s a question of ‘let’.

  2. But what does Ben Shapiro think?

  3. It is amusing because to hear some of the paleolibertarians here who comment on SSM threads, the gays are engaging in seeking benefits and social engineering when of course the other side is the one that has fought to attach the favor of the state to their preferred social arrangement all along.

    1. They will argue that they themselves were never a part of the side who sought to attach benefits. For some of them it will be an honest answer.

      1. My issue is when they ignore the fact that at the least the ‘pro-marriage’ side are pushing government involvement and engineering.

        1. They ignore it because they aren’t required to align themselves with one side or another – team, if you will – to make their argument.

          1. If you have one side that has pushed for the government to favor a certain arrangement and penalize all others, and has gotten their way for centuries, and then another side starts to become significant demanding that at least one other arrangement be favored/not penalized, then it seems pretty suspect to be vocal about the latter while ignoring the former.

            1. everything doesn’t have to do with govt, bo. Some folks define marriage in a particular way and they see that definition changing, don’t like it, and are saying so. Has nothing to do with favor or penalties.

              1. Sure, I understand the sentiment. What I am talking about is when we have discussions about SSM here and paleos show up criticizing the SSM movement because they want the government to bless their unions, but seem to have little to say about how the ‘pro-marriage’ side has been doing this for centuries.

                1. no opponent of SSM has used govt bennies as the source of their argument, at least no one I’ve heard. They define marriage as two people of opposite sex who are unrelated, not as a license to reach into the federal goody bag.

                  1. wareagle, read the post this thread is attached to! Utah’s entire argument is that the state needs to recognize only one type of marriage to foster all kinds of creepy statist goals.

                    1. bo, that’s Utah’s argument, not one being made by posters here.

                    2. That’ right, the article is about how Utah’s argument against SSM recognition is full of creepy statism. My point was that in past discussions of SSM I have seen paleos come here and criticize the statism of the SSM proponents, but nary a word about the much more creepy, and historically successful, statism of the other side.

                  2. So any couple that isn’t opposite sex just wants government benefits?

              2. They don’t have to like what other people do to understand that it is none of their business or that of government. Marriage doesn’t belong to just one group of people or another. When the state got involved and provided benefits AND made marriage a requirement for obtaining them, the definition of religious marriage was changed. If it was all about ‘procreation’ then women like me who deliberately eschew motherhood would not be permitted to marry, nor would us atheists who do not need the church’s permission to engage in sex for FUN.

                I have yet to hear one complaint about Charlie Manson’s alleged marriage… he cannot have conjugal visits (thankfully) so he will never be a breeder again, but the fact that this man CAN marry- as long as it is to a female- and yet that doesn’t impinge on the marriages of straight people is fascinating.

            2. then it seems pretty suspect to be vocal about the latter while ignoring the former.

              Not really. Especially when the subject isn’t the former, it’s the latter, and especially since the former has been discussed ad nauseum.

              Your ignorance of those discussions doesn’t mean they don’t exist.

              1. Actually, it is they that make a point to bring it up.

                Reason Thread: Shouldn’t marriage recognition be extended to gays?

                Inevitable Paleo: No, government should not be involved in marriage, these gays want benefits and government favoritism!

                My point is, it certainly is not only, and not first, the gays. The social conservative side on that issue is, as the author of this article shows, infused with that to the hilt.

                1. You made a point to bring it up.


                2. the pushback that surfaces often comes from libertarians whose support for SSM wanes when it becomes a license to sue, like the couple suing the bakery or some such. There is no one here making the case for govt bennies except to oppose them for anyone of any marital status.

                  1. That had nothing to do with gay marriage and everything to do with service discrimination. Two different things.

                    1. “That had nothing to do with gay marriage and everything to do with service discrimination. Two different things.”

                      I can’t wait for the first lawsuit against a Jewish bakery who refused to bake a swastika-shaped cake for some neo-Nazi couple. Pass the popcorn, Mr. Godwin!

                    2. I can’t wait for the first lawsuit against a Jewish bakery who refused to bake a swastika-shaped cake for some neo-Nazi couple. Pass the popcorn, Mr. Godwin!

                      I edited it to make it look as if your comment existed in the 50s. My last partner was of the same sex. Scumbag.

                    3. Here’s the actual edit. Too bad little typos are taken so seriously on the internet.

                      I can’t wait for the first lawsuit against a Jewish bakery who refused to bake a swastika-shaped cake for some INTERRACIAL couple. Pass the popcorn, Mr. Godwin!

            3. Uh, why?

              I assume that none of the people arguing for the various libertarian alternatives to gay marriage had anything to do with those penalties…

              1. Then why note the speck in the SSM proponents eyes while ignoring the beam in the opponents, to borrow a phrase?

                1. I’ll say that I think you are correct to call for consistency.

                  That is what led me to libertarianism in the first place. You can’t consistently support freedom and equality, and then support one of the (red or blue) teams because they both support freedom selectively.

                  However bringing this issue up did seem unprompted.

            4. Not ‘for centuries’, Bo. Since the dawn of civilization.

              Just setting the time frame correctly.

              And you miss the fact that there is one side that wants their arrangement favored, one side that wants their arrangement favored as well. and another side that wants no arrangement favored.

    2. the other side is the one that has fought to attach the favor of the state to their preferred social arrangement all along.

      Right. All those racist teabaggers time traveled back 3,500 years to ancient Sumer to get their preferred institution entangled with the state.

      1. Correct me if I am wrong, but contemporary conservatives themselves invoke the history of the state ‘fostering’ certain types of marriage for centuries as part of their argument for continuing it and not extending it to these newfangled gay couples.

        1. Who here are you debating this point with?

          Because if you want “contemporary conservatives” to give you their opinion, I suggest you name them so their views can be seen.

          Otherwise, it’s the classic “some people say” nonsense.

          1. I was responding to Tulpa, who seemed to be suggesting today’s conservatives are not pushing for the state to favor their preferred coupling arrangements.

            1. No, he’s taking a kind of funny cheap shot about a weak point.

              1. And I was pointing out the point is not weak. Conservative opponents of SSM often invoke the long history of recognition of their preferred coupling arrangement. Invoking tradition is kind of what conservatives do, you know?

                1. And I was pointing out the point is not weak.

                  By appealing to the views of “contemporary conservatives” who I asked you to name, at which point you referenced Tulpa.

                  Who was making a joke about your weak point.

                  1. You’re being silly.

                    In talking about the debate about SSM I referenced the social conservatives who oppose it as being part of a mindset that has historically pushed to entangle the state in coupling arrangements to push their preferred version, the people who are making arguments like the one by the Utah officials noted in the main article. The idea that the state has to be involved in pushing ‘traditional marriage’ is one advanced by today’s opponents of gay marriage, but also has been the idea animating a long history of government involvement in who couples with who.

                    1. I’m asking you to name the people you’re attributing the positions to in order to more effectively educate myself.

                      You have given me Tulpa.

                      I know a waste of time when I see it.

                    2. “I’m asking you to name the people you’re attributing the positions to in order to more effectively educate myself.”

                      Which? And why does it matter to you who they are specifically?

        2. I don’t see any conservatives invoking the coercive actions of past governments as justification for refusing to recognize SSM.

          1. And I don’t see your response to my 4:22 rebuttal to your 4:10.

            1. Your comments will be answered in the order they were received.

          2. Would Justice Scalia do?


      2. Umm, Sumer has records dating back about 2000 more years than that and Sumerian marriage would’ve been nigh unrecognizable to modern American marriage, what with all of the polygamist cousin marriage where women were used to solidify familial and business alliances and had little to no say in it.

        1. Sort of like we wouldn’t recognize Sumerian food, since most of us don’t grow or slaughter anything. [/sarcasm]

          Marriage as a legal arrangement endorsing a man and a woman fucking and raising children is essentially unchanged over the milennia. Changes in exclusivity and the manner in which the partners are selected don’t change the fundamental nature.

          1. True, but how we see marriage has drifted from wife/wives as property toward a partnership paradigm. Gay marriage makes no sense conceptually in an ownership paradigm, but fits nicely in a partnership paradigm. A gay couple raising kids doesn’t look all that different from a straight couple doing the same. Although it would look different from the perspective of Jacob winning brides from his uncle.

            1. Gay marriage makes no sense conceptually in an ownership paradigm, but fits nicely in a partnership paradigm.


              Not even sure where to start with that statement. It’s not at all hard to conceptualize a man owning another man.

              Gay marriage is only divorced from a property view of marriage because it became not-unthinkable long after the property view of marriage fell by the wayside.

    3. “The other side?” The only other side in this kind of debate worth talking about right now is anybody who wants the state to stick its nose in private affairs. One of the most vocal and obnoxious “gay rights” mouths has said there are 10,000 state benefits of marriage he demands for gays.

      What kind of stupid “liberation” or “equality” or “fair” is there in demanding expansion of benefits for your “group”?

      Me, I’m a creationist but I’m totally against any public school teaching anything against or for anything, much less my beliefs but it’s most offensive to use the fruits of theft to do it.

      I’m against anybody using marijuana (I toked up my furnace worth of smoke in the day) but I’m against all the laws against it.

      I’m against heroin too, but ditto on that.

      I have seen that homosexuality has done both physical and spiritual harm, but that having the state enforcing any rules on it (including using tax robbery for benefits for marriage of any kind, including “licenses”).

      Demanding the state recognize this or that form of marriage is for the lovers of state tyranny. Demanding that the state intrusion into the subject stop altogether is not “paleo” or “futuristic” or anything but libertarianism.

  4. “Creepy” is othering, Scott.

    Oh wait. I see that’s what you were going for. All good.

    1. Speaking of marriage, congratulations on your upcoming nuptials. Will you change your handle to Frau Nikki afterwards?

      1. Her future husband isn’t going to allow her to comment here so it won’t matter. She has a lot of cleaning and cooking of turkey pot pies to do, after all.

        1. What if her husband wants a “female-led” relationship like that guy in yesterday’s Dear Prudence letter?

          1. Dibs

          2. He did enjoy that letter.

            1. Enjoy it, or “enjoy” it?

          3. Hey, whoa whoa there, cowboy… I want a ‘female-led’ relationship too. I mean, female-led in the area of earnings and general financial contribution.

            It’s time for Paul. to sit at home all day and eat bon-bons.

            1. Fucking Amen to that.

            2. Then she cheats on you with her co-worker who “gets her”, divorces you, and when you get a job then she garnishes half your wages.


      2. Thank you, Serious! Don’t believe a word out of Epi’s lying fingertips, but I am not ready for a permahandle. One commitment at a time.

        1. Yeah, yeah, get it out while you can, nicole. It was nice commenting with you, even if you are the worst.

          1. I was just going over the origins of STEVE SMITH thread. How long have you been here?

            1. Too fucking long. He’s a barnacle on Reason’s taint.

            2. Which thread is that?

              I’ve been here a while. 2007?

              1. This:

                Which lead to this:

                Nobody wanted to admit to being the first one to call him a rapist, but it turned out to be Warty.

                1. Led. The word is led.

        2. I suspect you will get pregnant on the honeymoon and that’s the last we’ll hear of you.

          Why aren’t there any women libertarians? Because their uteri hate us.

          1. She needs to get pregnant because we need more libertarians period.

            She should consider mating her progeny with Baby Reason or Baby Liberty.

            1. Yes, let the grand libertarian breeding program begin.

              Bring us your children and we shall give you THE WORLD!

              1. Will they then offer the world ORDER?

                1. Of course. Although not knowing if Nikki’s fiance possesses suitable genetic potential we might have to take DNA from Kmele Foster or Nick Gillespie and breed them ‘Boys from Brazil”-style.

            2. I don’t know why we all just have to start about wrecking my vagina as soon as something good happens to me.

              1. The “husband stitches” will make it even better than new.

              2. Oh please, your vagina has been wrecked since you got drunk and took that dare to shove a watermelon up it.

                1. Jesus, I thought they were called “love stitches” and that was creepy enough.

                  And Epi, please. You know I wasn’t drinking that night.

              3. Cheryl: Now we heard some mention about babies.”

                Commander Drake: “Uh huh.”

                Cheryl: “But just to be clear, we don’t do babies.” “‘Do’ as in?” “Do as in tolerate, be around, touch and definitely as in let them claw their monstery way out of our vagina.”

                Commander Drake: “Well let’s put a pin in that.”

                Cheryl: “Ewwww. Wait. Put a pin in what?”

              4. live long and prosper doesn’t mean make her bring a child into the world against it’s will

                (nikki has vaguely approved this message)

                1. But not that apostrophe!

          2. That’s actually somewhat true in my case. My wife got pregnant on our honeymoon, and we haven’t talked politics since.

        3. Awwww…group hug.

          1. Squee!

  5. …in order to defend the state’s ban on recognizing gay marriages.

    PS Thanks for phrasing that in such a way as to head off any griping (FROM ME) about the term “ban on same-sex marriage” in the context of libertarian policy debate. You’re my hero, Shackford.

    1. Teacher’s pet, teacher’s pet…

    2. I’m a tad unclear on who is “banned” from recognizing gay marriage by the existing laws.

      If anyone has a link to a news story about someone being fined or jailed or even harassed by police for recognizing a gay marriage, please post it.

      Otherwise I’ll just assume you’re trying to frame a non-liberty issue into a liberty issue, as usual.

      1. Otherwise I’ll just assume you’re trying to frame a non-liberty issue into a liberty issue, ignore your actual arguments and insert my conflations and red herrings, as usual.

      2. Everyone in the Commonwealth of Virginia, Tulpy-poo:

        The Marshall-Newman Amendment also referred to as the Virginia Marriage Amendment is an amendment to the Constitution of Virginia that defines marriage as solely between one man and one woman and bans recognition of any legal status “approximat[ing] the design, qualities, significance, or effects of marriage”.

        There are no criminal penalties specified in the amendment, and the amendment’s scope has never been tested in Virginia courts, but it certainly bans SSM.

        1. (And this, BCE, is how one uses text tagging for maximum readibility.)

        2. Let me clarify:

          If anyone has a link to a news story about someone being fined or jailed or even harassed by police for recognizing a gay marriage, please post it.

          Which doesn’t include Wikipedia intros with sloppy misuse of the word “ban”. I see people recognizing gay marriages all the time and none have met with legal trouble yet.

          1. OK, Tulpa, here is the actual text of the Marshall-Newman amendment. If this isn’t a ban, what is it?

            Only a union between one man and one woman may be a marriage valid in or recognized by this Commonwealth and its political subdivisions. This Commonwealth and its political subdivisions shall not create or recognize a legal status for relationships of unmarried individuals that intends to approximate the design, qualities, significance, or effects of marriage. Nor shall this Commonwealth or its political subdivisions create or recognize another union, partnership, or other legal status to which is assigned the rights, benefits, obligations, qualities, or effects of marriage.

            1. Government telling itself and its sub-governments that they can’t do something is not a “ban”.

              By your logic the Bill of Rights is full of bans.

              1. So you’re the one seeking to control the conversation by controlling the definition of “ban.” Let’s have your definition of that, then.

                1. The only thing I’m attempting to control is the stealing of rhetorical bases by Herr Shackford.

                  If you think restrictions on govt are “bans”, you’re the one with an odd definition.

              2. Yes, Tulpa, yes it is. “Congress shall make no law,” etc.

      3. OMG, is that what I sound like when I complain about using the phrase “government ban on” as opposed to “government refusal to recognize”?

        1. Apparently you don’t complain about it often enough, since you’re doing it yourself.

        2. Nobody wanted to tell you because you’re so fragile. I’m sorry.

        3. Well, you come across as a bit peevish, Fist, but not screechy and hysterically desperate. Sorry, Bro.

          1. I only have a problem with the phrasing in the context of pushing libertarian ideas. Marriage licensing equality is of course a positive but the true path to marriage equality is to not rely on a state stamp of approval on your union. That only gives the state the power to define you.

            I know that idea can’t be sold by libertarians but at least phrase it when pushing marriage licensing equality as a thing the government is providing as opposed to a thing the government is stopping you from doing. At least give me that, libertarian pundits. Words matter when debating ideas.

            1. Fist, that is a quite good argument. Paticularly the second paragraph. One of my interests is how to attractively communicate libertarian ideas to a broader audience. This will become particularly important as we are entering the laugh-at stage of the ignore/laugh/debate/win progression. Would love to work with you on this.

              1. What is this mythical “debate” stage you speak of?

                1. fight, debate, at this point what difference does it really make?

                  (Since it’s like one in the morning when I’m posting this, I’m gonna guess none.)

  6. As noted elsewhere, I find Utah to be creepy and scary in different ways than, for example, New York or California. Yaaaay Federalism!

    1. Ditto. I had a house picked out there last year, and I just couldn’t bring myself to pull the trigger.

      1. Pull the trigger… I see what you did there.

  7. Also, that’s some pretty solid Alt Text, there, Mr. Shackford.

    1. Agreed.

    2. Hear, hear.

  8. Either way, such children will not benefit from the State’s preferred mother-father parenting model

    Oh, horror.

  9. All of these arguments are stupid. But they are no more stupid that myriad arguments routinely accepted by courts under the “rationalize-a-basis” test to justify/uphold all kinds of arbitrary and harmful laws and Government actions.

    1. They are certainly no more stupid than ‘it can be read as a tax’.

  10. If they want more straight people to fuck each other in Utah, then they’re going to need to ease up the restrictions on beer.

  11. the gays are engaging in seeking benefits and social engineering when of course the other side is the one that has fought to attach the favor of the state to their preferred social arrangement all along.

    “Monkey see, monkey do.”

    Quite a compelling argument you’ve got there, councilor.

  12. “Work has been halted on the expansion of the Panama Canal, one of the world’s busiest shipping routes.

    The stoppage follows a breakdown in talks between the Panama Canal Authority (APC) and the Spanish-led consortium behind the project.”

    If you find yourself in a hole, stop digging.

  13. For an opponent of gay marriage is it really preferable to have a single parent raise a child than for the child’s parents to be of the same gender?

    1. But the kid will turn out gay too!!!

      1. Needz moar “eleventy” and comic sans, but otherwise pitch perfect.

    2. Eh, would it be that surprising? Just look at the arguments used to try and block the roll out of the HPV vaccine. Some people would rather sluts die of throat and cervical cancer before giving them an opportunity to have sex with fewer consequences.

      1. I can’t remember which DEA official it was, but he made a similar argument against making naloxone available OTC.

      2. And not just “sluts” jesse. HPV is transmissible through skin-on-skin contact.

        We even had someone here claim he wouldn’t have “his daughter vaccinatted against an STD she’ll never get.”

        1. “vaccinated,” of course.

        2. Ha, I’d forgotten about that. I’m still aggravated that I was consistently just outside the range where I could’ve gotten the HPV vaccine without having a knock down drag out fight with my doctor about it.

          1. Me too, jesse, me too. We can be cancer buddies someday! Maybe. Hope not!

            1. Yay, throat cancer for everyone!

          2. Sounds like your argument is with the prescription system, which is hardly the creation of social conservatives.

            1. Actually it’s with the FDA guidelines for administering the vaccine, which are beholden to political forces.

              Republicans wigged out about the HPV vaccine in 2011 as related to Rick Perry having ordered that it be generally distributed to sixth grade girls.

              1. Republicans wigged out about the HPV vaccine in 2011 as related to Rick Perry having ordered that it be generally distributed to sixth grade girls.

                Libertarians should have been wigging out about that “general distribution” (read: mandatory vaccination) too. I would think opposition to forced medical procedures would be our home turf.

                1. Lol. Yeah we should totes freak out about sexualized sixth grade girls with the GOP.

                  People with very different first principles can agree on desired outcomes. The team red and libertarians only met on this issue on the very end point. For the republicans it was about populism and public morality, for the libertarians it was about autonomy and self-determination.

                  1. So if other people oppose state coercion for non-libertarian reasons, we should not oppose that state coercion?

      3. I’m Googling like mad and not finding any cases of HPV vaccines being “blocked” by govt. Are you talking about the resistance to making HPV vaccines mandatory? That’s not exactly the same thing, to put it mildly.

        Another case of libertarians bemoaning a lack of coercion?

        1. Oh look another case of Tulpa being a dishonest dipshit.

          1. As much as it hurts me to say this, I think Tulip is right on this one.

          2. So you don’t have any evidence of the vaccines being blocked either. That’s what I thought.

            1. But I’d like to hear your comment on the Marshall amendment. See my 4:22 rebuttal to your 4:10.

        2. waffles:

          For an opponent of gay marriage is it really preferable to have a single parent raise a child than for the child’s parents to be of the same gender?

          Yes, here is a separate example of people who believe that their morality is more important than positive outcomes for the people involved, even if they are directly unaffected.

          Does that clear up why I made that reference?

  14. The most compelling reason to oppose “same-sex marriage” is to stave off corruption of the language. A marriage consists of a husband and a wife; same-sex couples need to find a different word.

    1. I’ve been arguing that opposite sex couples need to find a different word, too.

    2. Oh, noes, teh gays are appropriating our culturz.

    3. Monitoring the purity of language is also not a valid task of the government.

    4. Polygamy is more traditional than monogamy if you want to play that game.

    5. Fucking legal definitions, how do they work?

    6. I’d also like to add that once government started licensing marriages and adding benefits to those officially married couples, you “find-another-word” advocates already lost that semantics battle.

  15. The summary is extremely useful in seeing exactly how certain types of conservatives are just as statist as progressives.

    OK, let’s put conservatives’ legal argument that the govt should be able to decide who it gives congratulatory pieces of paper to, on the balance against liberals’ arguments that the govt should be able to force you to buy broccoli, throw you in prison in Guantanamo forever with no trial, rewrite the bankruptcy code to favor unions and other politically connected groups, ban any weapon more dangerous than a plastic spoon, ban you from broadcasting political ads during election season without going through a labyrinthine regulatory process, ….

    Nice to see Reason is still the cutting edge of harebrained “pox on both their houses” claptrap. And never forget….


    1. “that the govt should be able to decide who it gives congratulatory pieces of paper to”

      Not to argue your overall main point, but it is a bit more to it than that. Historically it involves favoring ‘government preferred’ marriage with many benefits while penalizing, often with criminal sanctions, other arrangements. Also note that ‘protecting marriage’ and what was seen as its natural functions was the often invoked rationale behind laws against pornography/obscenity, contraceptive, and other things.

      1. I don’t give a damn about how important marriage was “historically”, I’m talking about today.

        There are ZERO criminal penalties related to lack of marriage today.

        1. So your approach is that since conservatives have lost much of their statist edifice behind things like traditional marriage it should be waived away? It is really recent, historically speaking, that some very intrusive elements of this edifice were dismantled (usually by ‘liberal activist judges’ btw), and we can still see aspects of it today (laws against bigamy and polygamy for example).

          1. I don’t really give a damn about SSM either way. It’s a bullshit issue, on both sides. One side is obsessing about whether somebody else gets a pat on the head for fucking someone with the same organs, the other side is demanding a pat on the head for fucking someone with the same organs.

            What I do give a damn about is libertarians slipping into bed with leftists on this issue. The aftermath of 06 and 08 should have taught us that it only leads to the political equivalent of firepiss.

            1. Tulpa, since you’re still on here would you like to respond to my 4:22 rebuttal to your 4:10?

            2. One does not have to ‘get in bed with leftists’ to think they are right on this issue. For example, I certainly draw the line with things like ENDA and what is going on in New Mexico.

              1. Of course, but equivalencing conservative arguments against congratulatory certificates and pats on the head with leftist arguments for compulsory broccoli and indefinite detention EFFECTIVELY aids and comforts leftists as much as a metaphorical sleeping partnership would.

            3. I thought 06 and 08 were the years of both Barr and the blue guy, both socons.

              1. 2006 was the liberaltarian movement, the apex of Joe from Lowell and Dave Weigel.

                2008 was the year that half of the Reason staff that voted voted for BO (Weigel, Cavanagh, Bailey).

                1. Yet it was Barr and blue guy who made the most waves. The number of people who are aware of the term “liberaltarian” are very few compared to those who are aware of Barr and the blue guy.

                  Also you seem to think positively of Romney the same way those Reason people did of Obama in 08.

      2. Oh, and Bo, dude. Here’s a guide to HTML text formatting tags for you.

      3. Historically it involves favoring ‘government preferred’ marriage with many benefits while penalizing, often with criminal sanctions, other arrangements.

        what the hell? what criminal sanctions have been brought against other people?

        1. okay…the polygamists are your argument.

          1. BCE is dredging up the ghosts of cohabitation laws, miscegenation laws, Old Testament stonings, burning at the stake, and anti-sodomy laws as justification for giving gays the gold star sticker of marriage in 2014.

            Sort of like using 1840s chattel slavery as justification for denying property rights today.

            1. The rationale behind all of that is the same rationale the author here rightly points to as the ‘creepy statism of social conservatives.’

            2. And that may be so, Tulpa, but you’re ignoring multiple challenges to address my 4:22 rebuttal to your 4:10 post.

    2. I just can’t figure out why people want to deny gays the pleasures of divorce!

    3. Look who’s back!


      Hilarious how Tulpatard thinks he’s being witty when he’s just repeating something obvious to everyone else.

    5. I remember a time when being against throwing people into Guantanamo forever got you labeled a “far-left Islamofascist” by conservatives, and speaking of Romney

      1. Pure accident but since I left the Romney part in their I might as well finish it anyways. He ran this kooky foil-headed ad about “jihadists” back in 07/08 and he was calling for all sorts of government expansions to military and “intelligence”.

  16. What could be more apposite than a Utah law legitimizing gay marriage only between three or more persons ?

  17. The weirdest argument spread throughout is fear that the government needs to make sure birthrates and fertility stay up.

    It’s not really weird — the whole document is an assertion that Mormon views on marriage MUST be advocated for by the Utah state government.

    1. Yeah that was the creepiest part. This shit is super Mormoned-up.

      1. Your vag belongs to the collective, Nikki.

    2. There is a legitimate govt interest in maintaining demographics, in particular keeping birthrates at or above replacement rate. Societies that don’t do this inevitably fall apart, either via economic collapse or invasion by more fecund peoples (which massive immigration would count as).

      1. I’m not anglo-saxon so I guess countering the birth rates of fellow not-so-white people is a legitimate function of government? Now that’s creepy.

        1. I meant age demographics, not racial ones. Point is that it’s legitimately problematic if a society has to import people from outside to keep the society going.

          H+R readers bitch about Massholes moving to NH, New Yorkers moving to FL, Marylanders moving to VA, and Californians moving to MT and CO, and bringing their statist politics with them, ruining what had been a liberty-friendly area… but apparently it’s a bunch of oppressed John Galts crossing the border from Mexico into the US. Odd how that works.

          1. You’re confusing society with the economy. What matters when it comes to numbers is other numbers. In this case the former being people and the latter being money.

            Not everyone from Mexico has the same beliefs (how collectivist of you), and the last I checked Mexico is more Keynesian than Marxist. More like Mitt Romney than Noam Chomsky.

          2. and i’m from Florida which IS NOT liberty friendly. Sure it’s right-to-work and there’s no state income tax, but libertarians hardly exist here and the Democrats aren’t much less religious than the Republicans. Recently a boy in the oh-so-diverse Orlando area got expelled from a government school for wearing make-up.

            Rick Scott is a right-wing Michael Bloomberg.

      2. Really? You’re saying that government can force me to have kids because some bureaucrat thinks we need more kids for survival or to keep the economy from collapsing? Wow, you really are a totalitarian through and through, even worse than progressives, who merely tinker around the edges.

        In a free society, whether people have kids is their choice. And if everybody decides not to have kids and society disappears in one generation, that is a legitimate choice as well, and one that our government has an obligation to support and defend.

        1. If you can point to where I said govt can force you to have kids, you get 1000 points.

          I’m talking about removing disincentives.

          1. No, you weren’t talking about “disincentives”, you were talking about “legitimate interests of government”. If this is a “legitimate interest”, it means government can compel.

            And “removing disincentives” is really about compulsion anyway. What you call “disincentives” is the costs associated with having children. If government “removes” those, it means that it needs to take from those who choose not to have children and give to those who choose to have them. That’s compulsion, no matter how you sugar coat it.

        2. I love how those socon Chicken Littles rant on about “if everyone was gay, humanity would soon go extinct!!!!” Yeah, right, like all the people in the world are gonna instantly develop an intense dislike for children. There’s no such thing as artificial insemination anymore.

          I also love how all the paranoia about overpopulating the Earth has been replaced with all the paranoia about declining birthrates.

  18. Tulpa can’t find a woman stupid enough, fat enough or strung out enough to marry his dumb ass, so he doesn’t want those darn gays to get married either.

    Do you think he throws away the jar of peanut butter after he fucks it, or just eats it anyway?

  19. “The State’s preferred mother-father parenting model” sounds borderline socialist

    “Borderline socialist”? You sound like border-enforcement creeps pulling people over, hundreds of miles from Mexico and claiming to be looking for illegals.. How is that near the border? That is thoroughly in socialist territory.

    Maybe you’re talking about the socialist/communist border…

  20. Forget about getting to the meat of the marriage issue and instead go for the bone.

    There’s no scientific evidence that a god or spirits exist and people will always reproduce so saying that’s there’s too few people is as stupid as saying there’s too many, and two people of the same sex being in a relationship has zero effect on anyone else regardless of how paranoid they are.

    As Aleister Crowley would say do as thou wilt!

  21. I’ve made this argument to social conservatives and Christians before and they just don’t get it. “But how is your big government intruding into my private life any different from progressives intruding into my private life?” The answers are generally something like: “because we are right and they are wrong”, “protecting the children from your unholy ways is not an intrusion on your liberty”, or “because God wants it that way”.

    1. I’m missing where the state’s failure to give a piece of paper to a gay couple is “intruding into people’s private lives”. You people have used that so-called right-to-privacy canard to get your way so many times that it’s become a tic.

      1. Wouldn’t you say that it’s not an equitable application of the law to not recognize a marriage (for certain people) that was performed in Connecticut, but then recognize a marriage (for certain other people) that was performed in Vegas. And then allow the Vegas one to be dissolved in a court but not the Connecticut one?

      2. It has nothing to do with “privacy”. These days, few people give a f*ck anymore about people finding out that they are gay. But what you call a “piece of paper” is crucial for everything from taxes to medical care to immigration. Denying that to people because of their sexual orientation is wrong.

        I actually think it would be better to abolish all the special treatment that married couples get by law. But as long as that special treatment exists, it should apply to all couples, regardless of the genders involved.

  22. OK, let me make one thing perfectly clear: I not only support a woman’s right to choose to an abortion, I support a man’s equal right to choose an abortion as well.

    1. So you support a man’s right to force another person to undergo surgery they don’t want (leaving aside any rights the unborn might have).

  23. Let’s just all agree that the state has an totally important role in providing a societal approval of man on man ass-fucking, and that it’s just swell, and anybody who is indifferent to that concept must be a raging homophobic monster…

    1. Or how bout we say that if the government is going to give out goodies and permission slips, they have to give them out in an equal manner.

      Of course this allows for all kinds of crazy combinations so take that for what it’s worth.

    2. The state has no business approving who fucks who at all. That’s the point.

  24. This writer (Scott) is pro-Gay in his presentation. Yes, the Arguments are not really anything new. Believe me, I have tried to convince them of this till I am blue in the face. I’ve so much as accused their Lawyer as being incompetent. I have sent dozens of winning Arguments to someone that I can only assume is with this group. I have NEVER seen any of my Arguments used. (one might conclude that none of it is good) I stress to them, why use your same old losing Arguments, use something new and unique. ‘Let me tell ya’, I am NOT a Lawyer, but I can easily win this case in ANY Court, by myself. I have the Arguments that will blow SSM out of existence. My problem is that I am poor, thousands of miles from the scene, have no inside track to the involve Lawyers, and much less the Courts. I have pleaded through the YEARS to be heard by the involved. It is for me, a losing battle, to save Society. It is almost impossible for them to win with these feeble Arguments. This writer, Scott, should not go against the traditional Marriage side just because they have weak Arguments. The issue and what is good for Society should be the concern, not the emotional empathy. Pity

    1. Cool story bro.

    2. What is ultimately good for society – especially American society, where we’re supposed to have the right to the “pursuit of happiness” – is for the freedom of Americans to do what they want without harming others, even if it what they want to do is self-damaging or not productive. The freedom to associate and form relationships with the ones we love, not out of convenience. High morale and low stress is good for the body, ergo good for society, right?

  25. You cannot confuse this issue. Many of us who want the state out of the business of telling us what marriage is, or who can associate with whom, know that denying the obvious is still denying the obvious. Meaning, homosexuality is not only a behavior choice and a net harm to those who practice it, but I, for one of many that so believe, do not want to steal from anybody to finance a sodomite hunt. That’s a bigoted angle pushed by antagonists to faith who take advantage of state force to associate it with believers.

    To be fair, then, take the expulsion of faith and the 10 commandments from schools, and the establishment of the pagan darwinian religion as official state science doctrine, as a hit against atheism.

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