Gay Marriage

Justin Amash: Fight for Marriage Freedom Not Over Until Government Gets Out of Marriage

Love hasn't won for everyone yet.

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Gage Skidmore

Have you heard the news that the Supreme Court recognized the right to marry, irrespective of sexual orientation (but still limited to a union of two), as a constitutional right? Maybe you saw it on Facebook? Or in a promotion from your favorite corporate brand? The ruling ought to eliminate shenanigans like this one and insofar as it opens access to benefits for same-sex couples that opposite-sex couples enjoy and overturns outright bans on gay marriages it's a victory for equality and freedom. In his dissent, Chief Justice John Roberts worried that recognizing gay marriage might lead to recognizing polygamy. Most on the left rejected that argument as outlandish, which is worrying—"love wins" when people who love each other can enter into any kind of contractual relationship they want, irrespective of their race, gender, or number. There may be more marriage equality today than there was yesterday but there's still an untold number for whom marriage equality doesn't exist. That number is untold because polygamy is against the law so most polygamists hide their marital status. Maybe in 10 or 20 years' time, "society" will be ready to accept polygamy as the Court judged it was ready to accept gay marriage today.

But there's a way toward total marriage freedom that doesn't require the creation of more layers of government privilege. Rep. Justin Amash, a libertarian Republican from Michigan, hit on that path in a Facebook post he put up about today's ruling. It reads, in part:

For thousands of years, marriage flourished without a universal definition and without government intervention. Then came licensing of marriage. In recent decades, we've seen state legislatures and ballot initiatives define marriage, putting government improperly at the helm of this sacred institution.

Those who care about liberty should not be satisfied with the current situation. Government intervention in marriage presents new threats to religious freedom and provides no advantages, for gay or straight couples, over unlicensed (i.e., traditional) marriage. But we shouldn't blame the Supreme Court for where things stand.

To the extent that Americans across the political spectrum view government marriage as authoritative and unlicensed marriage as quaint, our laws must treat marriage—and the corresponding legal benefits that attach—as they would any other government institution. So, while today's Supreme Court opinion rests upon the false premise that government licensure is necessary to validate the intimate relationships of consenting adults, I applaud the important principle enshrined in this opinion: that government may not violate the equal rights of individuals in any area in which it asserts authority.

Getting government out of marriage may be a lot more difficult than it seems, and not just because of the tax code. It's certainly turned out to be easier, or more politically feasible, to extend access to same-sex couples. Perhaps it's also more politically feasible to extend access to polyamorists than it is to remove government from marriage, even though the former seems as impossible a task as the latter right now. But, maybe, as marriage equality is extended to more people, it'll become harder for government to manage and therefore easier to disentangle government from a deeply personal institution, freeing people to love who they want, express it the way they want and agree on the terms and conditions amongst themselves the way they want without the government getting to decide what they "deserve."

Read important coverage of today's decision from Damon Root, Scott Shackford, Robby Soave, Stephanie Slade, Peter Suderman, and Jesse Walker.

NEXT: Greek P.M. Tells Europe What It Can Do With Its Debt Repayment Deadline

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    1. Amash 2016, but I guess things have to get still worse before they get better.

  1. Hat tip to EdWuncler!

  2. I am extremely skeptical that any of the Reason Editors care about plural marriage.

    Now that same sex marriage is “the law of the land”- their “war” is over. “I got my state recognized marriage license, so fuck everyone else”.

    Libertarians of convenience? Indeed.

    1. Think of the poor cousins trapped in a state that has criminal penalties for cousin-marriage.

      1. I do. Although penalties are appropriated only for cousins younger than 60 years of age as the state is freaky about genetic pools and inbreeding.

        Nevertheless, it is fascism.

        1. Laws against cousin marriage are beyond retarded. It shouldn’t be encouraged to build a dynasty, but if I remember correctly, first cousin marriage has lower odds of birth defects than a woman over 38 having a kid.

          1. First cousin marriage ban is a more recent development.

            1. Also weirdly distributed. I will say it makes more sense in a place like Iceland where the population is severely bottlenecked but there’s an app for that anyway.

              1. Why isn’t Iceland importing genetic stock like the rest of Europe?

          2. It shouldn’t be encouraged to build a dynasty

            But that is exactly how dynasties have been built over the past 5000+ years

            1. Which is why we have good information on how poorly “thoroughbred” rulers turn out.

              Also, poor King Tut.

              1. Dude, if you think King Tut got it bad, check out Charles II of Spain. Even in his official portraits where he’s supposed to look all kingly, he looks like he’s missing a few chromosomes.

                1. Hapsburg Jaw?

      2. Yeah, that subject inadvertently popped up in another flame war …

    2. I just don’t understand this point. Liberty extends to another part of the population, but because the state of affairs in this country isn’t *perfect* (licenses still in place; polygamists and others left out), libertarians can’t be happy about the news. Any sort of happiness would signal total hypocrisy and betrayal of libertarian principles, right? Please.

      1. You have a perverted definition of “liberty”. You are a statist, needing a government blessing to get what you want. Just because government has a bigger group of favorites, doesn’t make it liberty. It makes it worse for freedom, not better. Did you even read Kennedy’s opinion? It gives me the heebie jeebies.

        You want to see a libertarian response to real freedom on your statist government licensing? How about: (e) all of the above? Anyone can get a license, no restrictions.

        1. You want to see a libertarian response to real freedom on your statist government licensing? How about: (e) all of the above? Anyone can get a license, no restrictions.

          Ron and Rand Paul would have a shit fit.

          Did you even read Kennedy’s opinion? It gives me the heebie jeebies.

          So says the Woodchipper 4 Jesus, in a country with Separation.

      2. Main stream libertarians supported same sex marriage long before the President, the Vice President and possible future President changed their views on same sex marriage.

        1. Gay marriage was not yet an issue in the 1970s — but Goldwater and Reagan were strongly and publicly supporting homosexuals. When Reagan launched his winning 1980 campaign, he was a prominent leader in defending gays. His strong public defense of gay school teachers (opposing a referendum to ban them) was an unusual (for him) stick into the eye of the Christian Ayatollahs … even caused the collapse of the nationwide anti-gay Anita Bryant Campaign.

          If they were running to today, Huckabee would have a coronary, Santorum would throw up and Ron Paul would call them rogue Republicans!

  3. Intellectual consistency does not matter to the left. Not one bit. Read their views on polygamy as further proof of that.

    They think the government should act the way they want, and when they are in the majority its simpler – they should follow the will of the people. Whether one policy contradicts another is irrelevant. Same with Republicans.

    These questions have no relevance to most Americans.

    1. They didn’t arrive at their opinions on gay marriage through a careful construction of libertarian principles, so expecting them to adhere to some ideological consistency on marriage generally is a waste of time.

      Everyone uses arguments that appeal to freedom when they can because they realize how powerful they are, but just judging by how often they violate those arguments, they obviously don’t believe in them.

  4. Ed, goddamn it, it is NOT about equality!!! It is about the 1st amendment and free association (something that ENB claims does not exist).

    Libertarian editors at Reason sound like progressives.

    Try unalienable rights for a change, dammit!!#

    1. Libertarian editors at Reason sound like progressives.

      I think you have that backwards.

      1. Nope.

    2. Woodchippin’ 4 Jesus
      Ed, goddamn it, it is NOT about equality!!! It is about the 1st amendment and free association .

      About what I’d expect from “Woodchipin’ 4 Jesus”
      How does marriage equality violate anyone’s first amendment and/or free association rights?
      No offense, but you might better enjoy some equivalent to a Huckabee website. Then you can raise toasts to Orval Faubus 🙂

      P.S. Would Jesus be proud of you? Or ashamed?

  5. And Reason, this is your audience and the gay marriage thing:
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mAUY1J8KizU

  6. it’ll become harder for government to manage and therefore easier to disentangle government from a deeply personal institution

    When has that happened before?

    freeing people to love who they want

    I don’t think was at issue today…

    1. I don’t think was at issue today…

      Well, it was according to the intellectual paradigms who wrote the majority opinion.

      1. intellectual paradigms

        Like Equal Rights? Due Process? Separation?

  7. If you read the Reynolds v. U.S. decision that effectively outlawed polygamy, it’s one of the worst-reasoned arguments you’ll ever see (although arguably exceeded by King v. Burwell). Actually, Roberts’ comments on that in his dissent just increased my contempt for the man’s grasp of rights and legal reasoning. Not only did he drop his hypocritical “But this Court is not a legislature” claim just *one day* after effectively legislating Obamacare (in something that would be laughable for its complete lack of self-awareness if it didn’t undermine the entire concept of language), but then he goes on to regurgitate the knuckle-draggers’ gripes that procreation is the point of marriage…as if people in childless marriages are somehow engaged in a union that’s less valid.

    At this point, I don’t think it would be possible for Obama to appoint a Supreme Court justice more useless and milquetoast than Roberts. He certainly couldn’t find one who’s done more for his cause. I had hope for Roberts after Citizens United, but that was clearly the outlier in the man’s logic toolbox.

    1. procreation is the point of marriage.

      It is. Just because some people do not procreate doesn’t mean this isn’t it’s main purpose. If it isn’t for the ostensible purpose of procreation, what would it’s purpose be? Libertarians don’t believe the government has any business attempting social engineering but short of that, what would be the purpose of marriage? Shitting even more on those who are not attractive enough to get married? Finding more people to receive wealth transfers? Declaring yet another class of special interests? Government approval of your deep and abiding love?

      1. Not procreation. Property rights. The main reason for marriage is to establish property rights.

        If you are married to a woman and she has a kid, that kid belongs to you (even if you suspect her and your neighbor). This is a very important concept in a society that is mostly agrarian and needs the work of those kids to grow more crops and prosper.

        Likewise it also establishes a clear line of inheritance when the guy dies. The kids of his wife get the land and such. The neighbor kid (who looks a lot like him)? He gets nothing.

      2. Except that libertarians don’t want or need government approval of love (or children). These relationships have nothing to do with the government. They’re formed for their own reasons. One practical reason is property rights in part because of the network of other laws that regulate marriage outside just the licensing aspect.

        Marriage is just a contract that replaces a host of other contracts. You sign this one so that you don’t have to sign fifty million about property or medical decisions or inheritance, etc., etc. Children might be part of it, but not necessarily.

        Procreation is something that happens in many marriages, but it’s also something that happens before marriage or happens not at all in marriage. If you want this to be the defining characteristic of marriage, well, it never has been. Procreation doesn’t depend on marriage and marriage doesn’t depend on procreation. Penises go in vaginas just fine without a minister and a piece of paper.

        Freeing up the rules on who can contract moves us toward less social engineering.

    2. How was Reynolds badly reasoned?

    3. UCRawford
      . Not only did he drop his hypocritical “But this Court is not a legislature” claim just *one day* after effectively legislating Obamacare (in something that would be laughable for its complete lack of self-awareness if it didn’t undermine the entire concept of language)

      Your tribal news source(s) have manipulated you like a puppet. Here’s the facts you never saw.

      To defend making the subsidies available to consumers everywhere, Roberts cited a line the dissent to the 2012 decision in favor of Obamacare, in which Scalia said, “Without the federal subsidies . . . the exchanges would not operate as Congress intended and may not operate at all.”

      http://talkingpointsmemo.com/d…..gainst-him

      Do you know Scalia had it shoved up his ass? And just one of the excerpts you weren’t allowed to see,.

      “A neighboring section says that if a state does not act, “the Secretary shall ? establish and operate such Exchange within the State and the Secretary shall take such other actions as are necessary to implement such other requirements.

      I suppose one could say “such other requirements” does not include the subsidies … if they wanted to make a fool of themselves.

      http://www.usnews.com/debate-c…..-king-case

  8. We won’t be finished until every pizzeria is forced to serve deep-dish cake to every homo-orgy-marriage-wheel alignment.

  9. Well it’s nice to see people in this thread completely missing the point and going on with their culture war bullshit.

    This statement by Amash is absolutely perfect.

    1. Agreed.

    2. According to Tonio he shouldnt suggest this because there is no one seriously pushing for it. At least, that is what he said to me.

      I dont know why he would treat Amash differently.

      1. He wouldn’t because of this:

        To the extent that Americans across the political spectrum view government marriage as authoritative and unlicensed marriage as quaint, our laws must treat marriage?and the corresponding legal benefits that attach?as they would any other government institution. So, while today’s Supreme Court opinion rests upon the false premise that government licensure is necessary to validate the intimate relationships of consenting adults, I applaud the important principle enshrined in this opinion: that government may not violate the equal rights of individuals in any area in which it asserts authority.

        He explicitly acknowledges that we are not in a place as a country to attain the libertarian ideal of removing government from marriage and states that so long as that is the case people should be treated equally by the government.

        1. As the cousin/polygamy cases show, that isnt the case.

          1. What isn’t the case? Unless you are saying that cousin/polygamy cases show that he is right.

            1. People arent treated equally.

              I think the **only** way to marriage equality under the law is no marriage under the law.

              1. People arent treated equally.

                I think the **only** way to marriage equality under the law is no marriage under the law

                I think his statement captures that sentiment. It’s all about how the law should be not how it is.

                The best part is that he defines “traditional marriage” as:

                for gay or straight couples, over unlicensed (i.e., traditional) marriage

                rather than “one man one women” or the judeo-christian interpretation.

              2. As long as the government is involved in marriage at all, they are inherently taking a side.

            2. Thomas’s dissent dealt with the question of equality here. He basically defined marriage and its state given perks as a form of entitlements and said the government discriminates who gets entitlements all the time. And I don’t really have a good response to that.

              He further argued that this case redefined what a right is. I don’t have a very response to that, either.

              “Along the way, it rejects the idea?captured in our Declaration of Independence?that human dignity is innate and suggests instead that it comes from the Government,” Thomas said. “This distortion of our Constitution not only ignores the text, it inverts the relationship between the individual and the state in our Republic. I cannot agree with it.”

              Liberty has “long been understood as individual freedom from government action, not as a right to a particular governmental entitlement.”

              “Whether we define ‘liberty’ as locomotion or freedom from governmental action more broadly, petitioners have in no way been deprived of it,” he continued. “Petitioners cannot claim, under the most plausible definition of ‘liberty,’ that they have been imprisoned or physically restrained by the States for participating in same-sex relationships.”

              What is the libertarian response to Thomas? His thoughts have been largely ignored. I don’t have much of one.

              1. This is the classic positive versus negative rights, only here libertarians are the ones making the deal with the devil to get something we (mostly, I think) seem to view as a positive.

                1. Define marriage as the right to consentual contract of parties under freedom of association, governed by applicable contract law. This would remove state interest, equality concerns, consent issues, positive rights issues, bring preferential tax treatment into question, and if the decision was sufficiently wide, bring into question the constitutionality of public accomodation laws. Of course this is exactly why it would never happen. Even an honest justice would see this as gar too radical since it would be tremendously disruptive.

                  We are so far from the original intent and plain text meaning of the constitution that we are effectively screwed by precedent. Any good faith effort to rule in line with original constitutional principles would undermine a ridiculous amount of laws and precedent. No justice will do that and certainly a majority would never allow it.

                  1. This is a very thought out answer. It’s not that, in my view, the courts could not have come up with a better answer as to why this should be allowed, but that the one they chose was the wrong one and only continues us down the ridiculous path we are on.

        2. I think we are closer than many think. Oklahoma and Alabama have started down this path. I see more states heading that way.

    3. Culture war? I do not see it.

      1. You wouldn’t, would you?

        1. I really don’t see it.

  10. It would be great if we had 435 Justin Amash’s in the House.

    1. And 60 in the Senate. Im not greedy.

      1. If we had sixty-seven in the Senate it wouldn’t matter so much which clown they chose to put in the White House

  11. as a man that has been married for over 20 years with a wife that has boyfriends she fucks and I fuck a couple of female brights with this thing… government is so fucking stupid it can’t even begin to fucking understand the fucking relationships it is demanding to validate in the real world. Gay marriage is old news, man.

    Most gays are marrying like old fucking traditional cable TV fucks in the ultra suburban hoods. Beyond that? A LOT of offbeat shit is going down modern culture is missing because most of us will NOT allow your fucking cable shit asses to capture our lives.

    No fucking reporter will capture what is going on in deep America because most of us are too FUCKING smart to let your dumbass shit fuck up our lives with your ‘reports’ on what the fuck is really going on with american marriage…

    trust me, I know what I speak of….

    and guess what? blacks are just like whites in this regard…. lots of lovers in wealthy families beneath the surface…

    America is close to having her European moment… maybe 4 years.

    Big bucks on cable TV are managed to make ‘normals’ not change the channel…. BUT real life? is mucho different.

    1. Polygamy outlawed !!!! AC Hardest Hit !!!!!

      Just messing wit you man. You is CRUNK !!!

      https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8z7SfF5lXMQ

      1. :i love me some pyrite plundered by a pyrate.

  12. Utah was created so individuals could exercise their unalienable rights to free association.

    After being dragged out of their homes, persecuted for their beliefs, surviving an extermination order by the State of Missouri, the early Mormons lived relatively free from Federal govt interference for 50 years.

    Gee, it sounds almost “libertarian”. Too bad they were white & spiritual .

    1. You know who else issued an extermination order?

      1. Well, some prominent Mormons do share the middle name Willard.

        1. That’s Supreme Chancellor Palpatine to you.

      2. Tom DeLay?

      3. An Orkin customer?

      4. The Supreme Dalek?

  13. People have to decide what marriage is. Is it a holy sacrament? Is it a social contract? A legal one? Is it a promise between two people to love and take care of each other? If it is a legal contract, then, fine, have it be that. If it is some sort of spiritual union, then have it be that. Don’t try to make it be all of those things. If any couple or group of people want to enter into some sort of government endorsed legal agreement to share their economic lives, they should be free to do that, but if we are going to pretend that marriage is about two people loving each other, then government should not be involved at all.

    1. There’s also no practical way that a court could determine or enforce love, emotional support, etc. We would not want courts to do that. Many of the most important aspects of a relationship should not be monitored, evaluated, and adjudicated by government.

    2. ‘People’ (I assume you mean this in the collective we the people sense) don’t have to decide anything about marriage under common law. The only time ‘marriage’ comes into contact with ‘state’ is if there is a dispute and under common law it is the dispute that is adjudicated in court not the marital status.

      ‘People’ have to decide every single fucking thing about civil/statutory marriage – just like ‘theologians’ had to decide every single fucking thing about canon marriage before canon marriage was secularized/coopted/morphed into civil/statutory marriage. Because statutory marriage also allows for the possibility of all sorts of goodies during the marriage and after death (eg inheritance tax breaks = getting into heaven, etc). So you need all sorts of rules to know who is going to be condemned/punished or saved/subsidized.

  14. Maybe in 10 or 20 years’ time, “society” will be ready to accept polygamy as the Court judged it was ready to accept gay marriage today.

    Polygamy, in a welfare state, is a train wreck. If you want to be the alpha male with a dozen baby mommas and 30 kids, have at it, but you’d better take care of them yourself. Beta males, like myself, are not going to keep paying for this. Now many beta males feel sorry for the woman without a stay-around dad to help raise the kids, so he votes for more welfare for the mom and kids. How long will that last?

    1. Polygamy Legalizing Drugs Immigration Almost anything, in a welfare state, is a train wreck.

      1. therefore more welfare?

        1. Less welfare.

    2. Son, in a welfare state, you WANT polygamy. Contract rights, you see. And with contract rights, you have obligations.

      Hell, under polygamy, the whole combination plate of consenting adults are responsible (financially and legally) for each other and the children.

    3. Boy, you’re make as much sense as Foghorn Leghorn.

      1. Not sure who you addressed the Foghorn Leghorn. If it was to me, let me explain: when polygamy is not chased underground by government, consenting adults are responsible for the ‘marriage’ and the family – marriage unit. So a woman (example) may be financially responsible for her children and her “sister wive’s” children too.

        There is less welfare, not more.

      2. He called you son, like that stuttering cartoon rooster guy.

    4. Polygamy has trainwrecks in much the same way monogamy has trainwrecks.

      Polygamy is a state where a gathering of intelligent non-coerced females connect to a wealthy male who believes that his religious duty is to serve his females.

      How any motherfucker can even question this arrangement on the Salon’s and Mother Earth’s is fucking beyond me.

      1. Beyond me too. Frankly speaking, St. Paul corrupted Western civilization.

        1. Preach it brother!

          That is why all right thinking people stay on the right side of the river in Sunny Minneapolis.

          Only the legislators and Gov. Dayton go to St. Paul willingly.

      2. St. Paul corrupted Western civilization.

        I hitch-hiked around the US, on and off, for couple years in the early 80’s. I was stuck at a hiway underpass in Missouri for a over a day, in the pouring rain. A man picked me up and took me to his home. He introduced me to his wife and family, Two girls, about 7 to 9, and a boy about 5. His wife was a tad alarmed by this, as far as I could tell from her expressions. But she prepared us a meal of meat, potatoes, and vegetables. We said grace together. The dad prepared the sofa for me sleep on. We got along well and he wanted to tell me something. Maybe he didn’t have anyone else to talk to about this. Western civilization was corrupted by Linda Ronstadt. I didn’t argue with him.

        1. You went to a dudes house, ate food in front of his wife and children then fucked him and you consider yourself beta. Nah, thats a power move.

        2. I don’t see anyone here arguing with this – gonna go with it.

    5. Society’s willingness to accept polygamy is completely irrelevant.

      The Court’s willingness to accept polygamy is all that matters.

  15. Posting this here out of the nested hell above.

    “Along the way, it rejects the idea?captured in our Declaration of Independence?that human dignity is innate and suggests instead that it comes from the Government,” Thomas said. “This distortion of our Constitution not only ignores the text, it inverts the relationship between the individual and the state in our Republic. I cannot agree with it.”

    Liberty has “long been understood as individual freedom from government action, not as a right to a particular governmental entitlement.”

    “Whether we define ‘liberty’ as locomotion or freedom from governmental action more broadly, petitioners have in no way been deprived of it,” he continued. “Petitioners cannot claim, under the most plausible definition of ‘liberty,’ that they have been imprisoned or physically restrained by the States for participating in same-sex relationships.”

    What is the libertarian response to Thomas? His thoughts have been largely ignored. I don’t have much of one.

    1. Liberty has “long been understood as individual freedom from government action, not as a right to a particular governmental entitlement.”

      http://www.goodreads.com/quote…..-state-and

    2. Simple. The battlefield owning social streams origins at the fed level.

      The fed level to most with intelligent lovely atoms in their heads realize that the feds should have few powers.

      Why? over time all governments eventually fail under the weight of violating tyranny.

      If government had a history of remarkable it would fail rarely. However, it fails often.

      So, the human quest to demand the greatest tyranny from the greatest compilation of powers assembled on the greatest neighborhood of souls stands true today. We aren’t Saudi Arabia but Hillary Clinton, Obama, and Boehner obviously respects a form of tyranny or else they’d kick those bitches to curb. Not gonna happen SO…

      Liberty is individual and this scares the right-winger and left-winger who line up to lift up the god of law and order to enforce their personal battles against each other… Teams lined up, battling for right and left.

      Your proposition of liberty, broche? fail.

      American politics can tolerate tyranny. and so goes its Scotus.

    3. Liberty has “long been understood as individual freedom from government action, not as a right to a particular governmental entitlement.”

      Couldn’t agree more. Get rid of the entitlements. But this issue has nothing to do with entitlements. I has to do with equal protection under the law.

      1. It’s the same reason we support tax cuts, or optimally abolishing taxes, but oppose narrowly granted tax exemptions for special interest groups. I don’t see why some people here have trouble getting this.

        1. Because your position is asymmetrical. You’re willing to accept an incremental increase in the entitlement state for increased equality (don’t let good be the enemy of perfect!), but you’re not willing to accept an incremental decrease in the entitlement state (not equal, man! not perfect!).

          Entitlements are the issue for me. You and Francisco are willing to make that trade off. I don’t understand why you’re so afraid to admit it. You’re SOCIALLY LIBERAL/fiscally conservative and I’m socially liberal/FISCALLY CONSERVATIVE, which has always been the rarest of breeds, sadly.

      2. No, this is 1st amendment, Free Association.

        1. Not according to the majority opinion. And not when the government is defining what marriage is or isn’t and then allowing select groups to engage in it. It cannot be a free association issue if this is a state given right.

      3. Couldn’t agree more. Get rid of the entitlements. But this issue has nothing to do with entitlements. I has to do with equal protection under the law.

        So, are you saying that state defined marriage does not amount to an entitlement? At the end of the day, though, that’s what it boils down to. The government discriminates as to who gets entitlements all the time, but rights are universal and cannot be given. This precedent clearly defined marriage as a state given right.

        We might be championing the sort of precedent that bites us in the ass later, but I suppose it doesn’t really matter. Not like the court needs precedent to make ridiculous decisions, anyway.

        Would have been nice if the majority opinion here wasn’t such a clusterfuck. I would have rather have had post-midnight Agile Cyborg write it compared to what they produced.

        1. are you saying that state defined marriage does not amount to an entitlement?

          No he’s saying it

          is

          an entitlement, which should be abolished, but so long as that entitlement exists it should be granted equally.

        2. are you saying that state defined marriage does not amount to an entitlement?

          No he’s saying it

          is

          an entitlement, which should be abolished, but so long as that entitlement exists it should be granted equally.

          1. But that really wasn’t the argument made by the majority opinion, either.

            They have simply made gay marriage officially a civil right. They have expanded the definition of what a right is legally. They have said marriage is a civil right, but even then Kennedy’s own language defined it as one granted to two people. It talks of the right to marry. It’s contradictory, stretches new meanings out of the 14th amendment…it does everything Thomas said it does.

            My issue here is with the majority opinion that has set yet another dangerous precedent.

            1. That’s what I’ve been trying to express to people but they have their heads so far up the shiny rainbows, thry don’t grt it.

              Precedents Matter. It’s clear to me we need to do a better job teaching how SCOTUS works. People see it all with such shortsightedness.

            2. But that really wasn’t the argument made by the majority opinion, either.

              But it was the argument made by Francisco who you rhetorically stated did not think that government defined marriage is not an entitlement.

              For fucks sake, he stated that he “couldn’t agree more” with a portion of Thomas’s dissent you quoted. You disingenuous fuck.

              1. And my initial comment was entirely on the legal reasoning used. What Thomas argued was that his colleagues were redefining a right.

                Francisco’s logic does not bother me on its own, but it was not a response to the point I was making. Which you have continually missed. It’s not enough to say this isn’t about entitlements when the legal reasoning used by the majority opinion just defined entitlements as a civil right. The majority did not call them an entitlement, but the way Thomas used entitlement, he was basically talking about marriage being a positive right that the court was granting.

                Get off your high horse.

                1. I don’t care what the majority dresses the issue up with. Dicta isn’t binding as precedent; only the ruling is. And marriage is a right, just as the right to contract is.

                  It was and is purely an equal protection issue. Thomas is attacking the majority’s specious reasoning. (SLD applies)

      4. This issue has EVERYTHING to do with entitlements. Without the statutory entitlements of civil marriage, there is no issue.

        Every single plaintiff based their case on getting access to discriminatory entitlements – ie expanding the entitlement. They did not base their case on getting rid of those discriminatory entitlements (under the existing laws they were not eligible for them). That latter is the only possible ‘libertarian’ approach

        So now those discriminatory entitlements have been expanded to include gay married couples. While everyone now seems to be perfectly content that the discrimination still applies to ALL unmarried — you know – INDIVIDUALS.

    4. “Whether we define ‘liberty'”

      Liberty is defined already you asshole. You just don’t want to admit what it really means and say the definition out loud because to have liberty we would be free from you clowns in your robes, and the slaver you work for and support through your decisions against individuals.

  16. Maybe in 10 or 20 years’ time, “society” will be ready to accept polygamy as the Court judged it was ready to accept gay marriage today.

    Sorry, but no girl has her PBF to go shopping with. That’s key.

    Polygamists will never be accepted in the way that gays are. Homos are wonderful and life affirming. Polygamists are just creepy and icky.

    1. Have you seen the reality shows? It sounds cool, but then when you see the women, it’s actually really gross.

      1. No. It’s not actually gross, playa. In some situations its really fucking sexy. Your perspective has no connection with reality, brother. TV is shaping your reality.

        No ‘real’ arrangements will ever show up on your cable shows. With not a single shred of disrespect toward those who unveil their lives to America on thoughtless shit fuckers called cable TV producers-

        most of us would kick cable tv producers out of our houses and beat their asses down the driveway with a violent reprisal.

        The real world exists underneath- it will NEVER tolerate being commercialized by FUCKING lame ass cable TV schmucks.

        I have thousands of stories that would blow cable TV up and build ratings never seen… never going to be given those sociopathic fucktards in Hollywood. never. I know a story right now that would keep factory America glued for at LEAST three years… and it would make the Kardashians seem like a high school play… never going to tell those FUCKS.

        1. I’m merely noting that the women are really unattractive. It seems like it would be a fantasy straight out of Penthouse letters, but it’s not.

          1. … and attractiveness is essential to a good marriage, right? IMO, wrong. Ethics, politics, religion, interests, and more can be factors in mate selection. Good looks might not last, but some of those other factors might.

            And everybody is focused on polygamy. Do you all feel the same way about polyandry? What about something like the linear marriages described in Heinlein’s “Time Enough for Love,” wherein individual spouses of any sex can be invited in and can opt out at random? A marriage could exist for generations.

            1. Actually polygamy describes both polyandry and polygyny.

              For some reason people think polygamy is the same thing as polygyny. It is not.

    2. Wait. What? I have fucked in all sorts of ways. I have sucked dicks, fucked male butts, fucked multiple female partners in the same bed, fucked males and females in the same bed and watched my first and only marital partner get fucked in the pussy many times…..

      Um, human sex is fucking wonderful and life affirming in the adult world no matter what.

      Are you telling me that only gay sex and strict heterosexual arrangements are NOT creepy and icky?

      What the motherfucking rigid fucking brain has been placed in your goddamn skull?

      1. I’m observing public perceptions, not stating my own. I could give a shit about what someone does in their spare time.

        C’mon AC, get with the program.

      2. AC, you are awesome! Human sex is fucking amazing, in all of its combinations. I have also engaged in many of the things you mentioned (though not all, mores the pity!).

  17. Justin Amash: Fight for Marriage Freedom Not Over Until Government Gets Out of Marriage

    I concur. The government of these States united has no legitimate perview in defining “marriage”.

    1. And I thought that increased government revenue through government marriage contracts was incentive enough. =)

    2. So quicker Social Security collapse as more benefits continue to be paid out?

  18. Here’s a question for libertarians, does the State have a compelling interest in assuring, at minimum, mental competence before marriage? In Libertopia are old rich people with dementia going to be preyed on by the unscrupulous?

    1. That’s covered under contract law.

      1. Isn’t the State a party to the contact since it affords benefits to the married?

        1. The State wouldn’t afford benefits to the married in Libertopia.

          1. Of course but I meant currently.

            1. But your question was set in a hypothetical Libertopia, so Playa’s answer was contingent on the same hypothetical Libertopia existing.

    2. Consent is necessary for any contract. To the extent the government has any role in enforcing contracts it has an interest in assuring that the contracts were entered into consensually.

      1. You are so right on! That is the only legitimate role for government in this area. To act as neutral arbiter in terms of enforcing basic contract law. All participants are of legal age and competent to sign the contract. When in breach of contract, there should be standard language (sort of a prenup).

    3. The state doesn’t have a compelling interest in anything; it is a neutral arbiter of disputes. Should the family (or another interested party) be able to prove that the old rich person is not competent to consent to the marriage then the state is obligated to abrogate the arrangement.

  19. 2008: Get rid of marriage licenses? What, are you some kind of faggot lover? How dare you try to make an end-run around traditional marriage!

    2015: Get rid of marriage licenses? What, are you some kind of socon theocrat? How dare you try to make an end-run around equal protection!

    What a short 7 years.

    1. ^^^ This. =)

    2. Yeah, I always wonder if there was a tipping point where not licensing marriage could’ve been sold.

      I remember some Christians of my acquaintance freaking out in 2000 when I suggested that it might be easier to just not have a state definition of marriage.

      “But the homosexuals will just form their own churches and call themselves married!” was an actual quote in that exchange.

      1. I always believed that the state should just excise the word “marriage” from all laws and replace it with “civil union” or “popcorn” or something. People seem to be a lot more rational when the actual word is removed from the equation.

        My one (completely irrelevant) political victory was posing that to my overwhelmingly Democrat coworkers back in ’08 and having them completely agree with me, which never happened on any other subject. I think that was probably the time to get started on getting non-licensing going as a movement, but the momentum of the time’s ascendant social liberalism simply kept gay marriage in a statist direction and so here we are.

        1. It always seemed the least contentious route which is probably why no side argued in favor of it. Civil unions for everyone let marriage be a purely social institution.

  20. How many dudes have sucked cock on reddit and on reason? How many really understand homosexuality and its rivers?

    1. AC Cocks for me are a turn off, but I am into hugs, high fives, and drunken bellowing of kind words,

      /hugs AC

      1. /highway to ocean hell for that FUCKING bearded PYRATE loaded down with massive chests of gold love stolen from that FUCKING bitch called agile cyborg…

        (my ass pretended to be cutlassed and thrown into a Jpyrate dungeon while he and his fucking strange horde of jetpack snails stole all my visible emotions and golden memories- i did this because sometimes reason dudes have to pretend to be crushed by great minds and their rocket ships)

        1. I paused Alice in Chains =Rooster= for that and , yeah, what FUCKING great thing to pause shit to… brother.

          My brother in law and I saw that live in Indianapolis a few years back and went to fucking great strip club afterward… was like 3 in the morning… we were drunk and getting drunker and normally we don’t break fucking drunking laws but we did that night and in that steamy fucking tired room I met the goth chick of my nightmares and orgasms…. was fuckedup so you have to understand that when you have done tons of booze and coke your sexuality is solid but very FUCKING pragmatic- not like a shit college dude eating tons of Michelob- we just got off smashing out shit on Breaking Benjamin and Seether and bowls of pot, vodka, and cocaine in the back of a pickup and then a ride to a sweet home of naked girls at 3 in the morn.

          I saw my gothic angel and her muscles and tits and ass glistened with the stars and she looked down at me and jammed her leather boot right into my balls and I obeyed and paid her tons of fucking dollar bills as she rocked my entire fucking body with her electricity …. no strip club girl has ever turned me on since…. this goth brought satan into my arms and neck and dick- she slammed her clit and tits all over me with a gentle lave stream of orgasm and when her hands stroked my final jetstream into her mouth -she saluted me.

  21. What’s with the obsession with marriage licenses? Even without licenses, the government will still be in the position of recognizing or not recognizing marriages. Without a license, there’s simply one less piece of evidence available, but other evidence – witnesses to the ceremony, witnesses who say the couple (or triple) lived together as husband and wife (or husband and husband, or husband and sister-wives), etc.

    In the absence of licensing, the question of what constitutes a marriage the government must recognize would still exist.

    1. Are you married NotGKC?

      1. I think as a concerned creature you would wish that your marriage is validated, man. All I’m saying.,,

      2. He’s single, and a former fornicator.

        1. Fornicators are a blessed freedom on the fabric of open Murica but if you actually meet a lovely set of tits that wishes to utilize the state to validate her connection to you the rivers of male reality have to separate from the rapids into the smooth flowing brook….

          1. What he said…I think.

        2. You’re prejudiced against my sexual orientation?

          1. Are you a transgender, NotGKC? You strike me as particularly fucking loving and in touch with very deep emotion canyons.

            1. Sometimes I feel like a hot college coed.

              1. My face was smashed into smiles…

        3. I do have a personal stake in a strong marriage culture, in that if the youths in a community were raised in intact families, my chances of being burgled or stabbed are much less, because a disproportionate number of fatherless kids are into that sort of crime.

          1. You don’t have a stake at all in other people’s personal lives.

            1. Not a legal stake, no, but if the government, purportedly on my behalf, is to extend benefits/immunities based on marital status (as you seem to allow for below regarding testimonial privileges) then I get a say in how the government goes about this.

              1. Not a legal stake, no

                Not any stake.

          2. Uh- you ARE a hot college coed. No males worry about that sort of shit. Which is perfectly fucking ok. BUT, as we resound with thinkers- thinkers think about the minds posting thoughtful shit.

            I have to admit that I don’t understand the personal stake in a strong marriage culture. Perhaps a strong and open society would be just as feasible for the range of families around us?

          3. Oh bullshit. Some of those kids that have everything, and have a great life rob, steal, and murder. Don’t kid yourself. The best way to defend against someone hell bent on robbing or killing you is learning self defense and being armed. That would better your chances.

            The gov’t burglarizes you, and Jesus didn’t condone taxation, nor gov’t for that matter. So I guess following your religion with the thou shalt not steal commandment, you don’t support any gov’t, and only voluntary transactions free from force, theft or coercion.

            1. “Some of those kids that have everything, and have a great life rob, steal, and murder.”

              Which of course I never denied, any more than I denied the right to self-defense.

              And I imagine they censored Romans 13 out of your Bible.

    2. Other forms of contract don’t require a witness, why should a marriage contract?

      In the absence of licensing, the question of what constitutes a marriage the government must recognize would still exist.

      No, to the extent the government is the final arbiter of contract enforcement, the government would merely need to enforce the terms as written, just like any other contract.

      1. It’s a fairly simple point – the government can recognize or not recognize marriages even if there’s no license involved.

        I’m not really sure how the obsession with marriage licenses is intrinsically linked to gay marriage.

        1. It’s a fairly simple point – the government can recognize or not recognize marriages even if there’s no license involved.

          Recognizing whether a contract does or does not exist is pretty simple, and while there are numerous theories under which you can argue one doesn’t exist, they are very very rarely winnable if two (or more) parties have their signatures on a piece of paper.

          If the government treated marriage contracts like any other contract it would be extremely rare that the government wouldn’t recognize the marriage.

          1. See below – how can two (or more) people contract to protect themselves from being forced to testify against each other?

  22. I’m willing to bet that all the fucking gay fucks are on progressive sites and maybe a couple of commenters here are gay or are bisexual. And Scott is gay, obviously.

    As a bisexual male I can deeply appreciate the euphoria of being validated by the most powerful force on earth… your american government.

    Gays are a special part of us. the only fucking issue I have is we have taken 30 years and Christians have forced the highest court in the land to take an absurd stand against their doctine.

    The new battle will take another decade or so which is… let multiple lovers marry…. polyamory….

    Poly couples can be gay or religious or atheistic or witches….

    I guess we need the all knowing fuckwits in Washington to approve our crazy sex lives.

    1. There are several gay commenters here. Our last Reason meetup was like 30% gay.

      1. Diversity!

        *tosses confetti*

        1. Roflmao

  23. All I can say that as a former Troll. I am finding it hard to resist falling back into my old ways, with all the Obamabots slapping each other’s asses, and the Socons wailing like jilted school girls. 😀

    1. Trolls live rich lives here, love- but you seem far too connected to the fabric of philosophy.

        1. Guilty as charged AC. =)

  24. “The ruling ought to eliminate shenanigans like this one and insofar as it opens access to benefits for same-sex couples that opposite-sex couples enjoy…”

    Benefits that heterosexual couples enjoy? Seems to me that a lot of gay people have been getting a free ride at a lot of companies–benefits for which their heterosexual employees never qualified.

    Can heterosexual employees who live with their boyfriends or girlfriends–and work for companies that offer benefits to the unmarried partners of their gay employees–sue for discrimination?

    I assume the answer is yes, and I bet more companies will start requiring their gay employees to marry their partners if they wish to continue to qualify for company benefits. Because it’s usually about keeping costs down, so companies aren’t likely to start extending benefits to their unmarried heterosexual employees.

    It was one thing when the states wouldn’t let a company’s gay employees marry their partners, but now that they can, why would they continue to extend benefits to the partners of gay employees–but not the partners of heterosexuals–just because their gay employees are gay?

    That’s just flat out discrimination against heterosexuals on the basis of their sexual orientation.

    1. Can homo couples get benefits without a legal arrangement where you live? That’s never been the case where I live, probably because we’ve had a legal civil union apparatus since I’ve been in the workforce.

      1. My understanding is that companies like Disney have been providing benefits to the partners of same sex employees for a long, long, time. Certainly before gay marriage was legal in either California or Florida.

      2. Here’s a story about it at Disney (and Universal, Paramount Pictures, Sony and Warner Brothers) from 1995.

        From the bottom of the article,

        “Under the policy, a Disney employee who wants to claim the benefit must sign an affidavit that says he or she is living with the partner who will receive the benefits. Unmarried heterosexual partners are excluded from the policy.”

        http://www.nytimes.com/1995/10…..tners.html

        —-New York Times, October 8, 1995

        I believe this has, in fact, become standard practice in a lot of companies.

      3. Can homo couples get benefits without a legal arrangement where you live?

        This will be interesting to watch. Now that gay people can get married, will companies get rid of the special benefits for unmarried gay partners? They were justified on the basis that these folks couldn’t get married. Now that they can, there’s no reason for gay partner benefits.

        I expect any attempt to get rid of them, and say, hey, you want the bennies for your partner, get married already, will be met with anti-discrimination lawsuits.

        1. I was under the impression this already happened fairly seamlessly with many companies after the relevant sections of DOMA were removed and their state recognition of gay marriages was considered valid for federal tax purposes.

    2. Ken Shultz
      Benefits that heterosexual couples enjoy? Seems to me that a lot of gay people have been getting a free ride at a lot of companies–benefits for which their heterosexual employees never qualified

      Showing, once again, how easy it is to bullshit a goober.

      That’s just flat out discrimination against heterosexuals on the basis of their sexual orientation.

      Would you also require bakers to provide gay wedding cakes?
      Why else would you defend government force over private employers?
      Ahh, this time it’s convenient to your personal bigotry. Never mind.

  25. For all the “let’s deregulate marriage” people, let me ask:

    -If the government stops recognizing anyone’s marriage, does that mean that spouses can be forced to testify against each other? If not, on what basis will they be able to claim testimonial privilege? Let’s assume they’ve been granted immunity so they can’t plead the Fifth.

    -If a guy dies and his will leaves everything to his mistress, completely cutting out his wife of 30 years, can the wife get a forced share of her late husband’s estate? On what basis can she do so if the government doesn’t recognize her marriage?

    1. -If the government stops recognizing anyone’s marriage, does that mean that spouses can be forced to testify against each other? If not, on what basis will they be able to claim testimonial privilege? Let’s assume they’ve been granted immunity so they can’t plead the Fifth.

      I see no reason why this particular privilege should exist but if it does there’s no reason why a hearing can’t be held to see if their marriage contract is sincere.

      -If a guy dies and his will leaves everything to his mistress, completely cutting out his wife of 30 years, can the wife get a forced share of her late husband’s estate? On what basis can she do so if the government doesn’t recognize her marriage?

      It all depends on what the contract says about the inheritance of assets. This is handled in the courts every day with businesses. Partnership/shareholder agreements have all kinds of stipulations on how shares are handled on the death of a partner/shareholder.

      1. “I see no reason why this particular privilege should exist but if it does there’s no reason why a hearing can’t be held to see if their marriage contract is sincere.”

        OK, so you *would* have the government decide who’s married and who isn’t. Maybe you’d have different criteria for recognition, but in principle, you appear to have conceded the point.

        “It all depends on what the contract says about the inheritance of assets.”

        OK, so as I understand your point, a wife can contract away her right to a forced share, under your regime.

        1. OK, so you *would* have the government decide who’s married and who isn’t. Maybe you’d have different criteria for recognition, but in principle, you appear to have conceded the point.

          I didn’t concede shit, I said that “I see no reason why this particular privilege should exist.” But I attempted to argue with you on your terms. I see now that was a waste of time.

          OK, so as I understand your point, a wife can contract away her right to a forced share, under your regime.

          People forming a partnership/llc/etc. can set it up any way they want through contract (in the form of a partnership/shareholder agreement). It happens every day and courts/arbitrators deal with them every day.

          1. OK, then, let me modify my reply…you’d make it easier to compel testimony from spouses about/against each other.

            1. I said I don’t see why it should be any more difficult to compel testimony from a spouse than any one else.

              How difficult it should be for the government to compel testimony in general is a separate question.

              1. Of course, but if, let us say, a “marriage deregulation” proposal is on the ballot, I would imagine you’d look up the effects on testimonial privileges before voting.

                And if there was no accompanying proposal to limit compelled testimony in general, then the effect of such a “marriage deregulation” measure would probably be to *increase* the government’s power to compel testimony.

                1. The only (nearly) absolute evidentiary privilege that at exists nationwide is attorney-client privilege. Spousal privilege, just like doctor-patient privilege (the other main place I see this misconception) is incredibly weak despite what the TV tells you.

                  1. So I’ve been told, but whatever remains of it would be destroyed by “marriage deregulation.”

                    And of course “marriage deregulation” would rule out any possibility of *strengthening* the various spousal testimony rules – there would be no rules to strengthen.

                    1. There’s no reason that spousal privilege should have the incredibly minimal status it has, which I said in the first place. You’ve yet to refute this.

                    2. Right now, I’m at the point of asking about the real-world consequences of “marriage deregulation.”

                      But I have to take a stab at defending the various spousal testimony rules, I’d say that it keeps the privacy of marriage away from govt’s prying eyes.

                    3. John already trotted out this same of line bullshit at least a year ago, with the additions of how custody would ever be decided (despite the fact the custody cases are decided with unmarried partners every single day). Spousal testimonial privileges, to the extent that they can be said to really exist anymore, are basically bullshit — you should no more be able to compel testimony from a man’s business partner or his kids or his associates or his friends than from his wife.

                      Your second point about inheritance is utterly fucking insane. Wills should be respected as written, period. If you want to cut your wife or husband out of your will, they shouldn’t get a state-sponsored veto of your wishes. I can only presume that you are also opposed to prenuptial agreements are currently constituted.

                      In a privatized “marriage” scheme, your local parish would undoubtedly have a boilerplate contract form for you and your spouse to sign and enter into an agreement under the terms approved of by the Catholic church, including inheritance rights and POA. You could still retain the backward slave-bonding laws you prefer for your own relationship. Just nobody else would be obligated to do the same.

                    4. “slave-bonding laws” – is this like the stuff in 50 Shades of Grey?

        2. Okay Biggie. What you are asking without trying to seem bigoted is. “What if a man/man woman/woman marries a member of the opposite sex in order to appear “not gay” and then leaves all of his/her wealth in a will to the the secret same sex partner, does the opposite sex partner have a right to a share of that wealth through a government contract ?”

          1. “”What if a man/man woman/woman marries a member of the opposite sex in order to appear “not gay””

            I’m not sure why anyone would do that in *this* day and age, but under the “bigoted” regime I endorse, you can avoid giving a woman a forced share of your estate by the simple expedient of not marrying her. If you *do* marry her, you can still leave everything *other* than the forced share to your lover of either sex.

            1. Okay. So what you are saying is that the marriage contract supersedes the the will.

              1. It’s my understanding that the wife can contract away her rights here, but as a matter of fact I’m not fully sure.

                But I imagine that she could sign a deal with the mistress promising to hand over her elective share to the mistress after the husband’s death. If that’s what the wife wants to do.

                1. It is also my understanding (and don’t quote me) that the wife* can get her elective share when the will is probated, and then anyone to whom she agree to give that share can then claim it. Or maybe it would be handled during the probate process itself.

                  *or husband

            2. You cited a virgina law below. You do realize that every state has different laws in this regard and in some states your estate is not required to give a portion of your assets to you spouse right? And in the states that do, what percentage that is varies.

              In a situation where a marriage is treated like any other partnership/llc/etc. the formation agreement would control not some arbitrary statute.

              1. Certainly, and under a “marriage deregulation” regime there would not be any such thing as an elective share in any state.

                This is either good or bad depending on your point of view, but it *would* be a consequence “deregulation.”

                1. consequence *of* deregulation

                2. This is either good or bad depending on your point of view

                  Any point of view that disallows consenting adults from contracting what they want is a wrong point of view.

                  1. As I see it, the decision to marry has to be voluntary, but once entered into, people should take the consequences.

                    1. The contractually agreed consequences. You shouldn’t suffer any consequences you didn’t consent to.

                    2. Poor Eddie can’t wrap his mind around the fact that in the absence of legal defaults forced upon every couple by the state, they could settle every single one of these issues that he thinks are “gotchas” in the negotiating phase. Much like forming any other agreement, there would be a lot of boilerplate language, and a lot of people would opt for “sane defaults” similar to current marriage law, or in accordance with the precepts of their religion. But people who wanted to negotiate other terms would have the ability to do so. Eddie is so so pants-shittingly terrified that somewhere, some couple might come up with an agreement that doesn’t check all his boxes for what a “marriage” should be that he completely missed the fact that he could, in point of fact, construct a document for himself that checks off every box for what a marriage should be, including terms where he currently vehemently disagrees with the existing marriage law (like no-fault divorce, for example).

                  2. Any point of view that disallows consenting adults from contracting what they want is a wrong point of view.

                    B*I*N*G*O

        3. ‘OK, so as I understand your point, a husband can contract away his right to a forced share, under your regime.’

    2. “If a guy dies and his will leaves everything to his mistress, completely cutting out his wife of 30 years, can the wife get a forced share of her late husband’s estate? ”

      I would imagine in the majority of states, no.

      ” On what basis can she do so if the government doesn’t recognize her marriage?”

      This is called a fucking contract NotGKC. Marriage has nothing to do with it.

      most business relationships are marriages.

      1. “If a guy dies and his will leaves everything to his mistress, completely cutting out his wife of 30 years, can the wife get a forced share of her late husband’s estate? “

        I’m not sure about that, but my understanding is that if you’re married for more than ten years, your ex is entitled to half of your social security benefits.

        I suspect they’re probably entitled to survivors benefits, too.

        1. OK.

          Now, apparently “elective share” would be a the term I should have used

          http://www.virginiaestatelaw.c…..hare.shtml

          because googling “forced share wife will” produces some…interesting…results.

        2. This doesn’t work with children, Ken. Why would it work with old wives?

          On a second marriage that has failed and the dying fuck husband leaves his belongings to a DIVORCED second wife… she has full authority on everything left to her.

          I know because this is happening to my dude in deep Florida right now. He has no rights under Florida ever as his divorced second mom just gave almost 100k to her own son from a man outside this arrangement…

          If a man has a mistress and gifts her his estate I literally cannot see how any of that estate is legally available to the man and his true offspring from any number of wives…

          1. Please pay attention guys and gals- as I belong to a family of artists and financial advisors:

            Many marry and divorce. But first they make children. If you leave a will to the second wife or husband and you are dead the second wife or husband can legally never give your money to your ACTUAL children. they can cut OUT your offspring and give YOUR money to their own which you have never ever met or produced.

            something to think about when you pass money onto a second or third divorcee..

            1. This depends on state law and/or any prenuptial agreement.

            2. Wow, Agile sobered up quickly!

              And I’m sorry to hear you know people going through such tribulations.

              1. This is why I like you Biggie. Also there are a lot of smart cookies around here, Including you. =)

                1. Underestimate none.

          2. “This doesn’t work with children, Ken. Why would it work with old wives?”

            I’m not saying that’s the way it should be; I’m saying that’s the way it is.

            “If you are divorced, your ex-spouse can receive benefits based on your record (even if you have remarried) if:

            Your marriage lasted 10 years or longer;”

            —-Social Security Administration

            http://www.ssa.gov/planners/re…..pouse.html

            Incidentally, if you’ve been married twice–both times for more than ten years–and subsequently divorced them both?

            I believe you get half of both of their benefits. You could end up with twice as much as either of your spouses!

            I’ve heard divorce lawyers say that the average marriage if it fails typically lasts just under ten years. He’ll tell the spouse that wants to divorce–wait another six months and you’ll get half his social security. But they’re so miserable they can’t stick it out for another six months. I guess it speaks to the old joke, Q: Why is divorce so expensive? A: Because it’s worth it.

            1. Incidentally, if you’ve been married twice–both times for more than ten years–and subsequently divorced them both?

              I believe you get half of both of their benefits. You could end up with twice as much as either of your spouses!

              The system is fucked up (and more fucked up after yesterday), but I don’t think it’s that fucked up. Just like you can elect to take half of your spouse’s benefits or your own benefits, I believe you can only elect to take either spousal benefit. But I certainly can’t point you to a link confirming that, so maybe it’s just my wishful thinking.

          3. If a man has a mistress and gifts her his estate I literally cannot see how any of that estate is legally available to the man and his true offspring from any number of wives.

            How can the man’s estate be available to the man after he’s dead? But this is Florida.

        3. Probate is covered under State law. Your understanding may apply to your State, but not another.

          In California, wills are not taxed for distributions under some fairly big number. I talked to a probate lawyer about this a couple of years ago but I don’t recall the exact limit. It’s well upward of $1,000,000, IIRC. More than I had to worry about.

          This is surprisingly libertarian for the People’s Republic of California. Couples don’t even need the security of a legal domestic partisanship arrangement to bequeath their full estate to their partner, tax free. And tax-free is big deal here.

    3. If a guy dies and his will leaves everything to his mistress, completely cutting out his wife of 30 years, can the wife get a forced share of her late husband’s estate?

      Of course, no free market marriage contract would ever include language around the designation and disposition of marital assets.

      This is a weak argument. Making probate law more closely aligned with the wishes of the deceased doesn’t sound like a bad thing to me.

      1. Bill Dalasio
        This is a weak argument. Making probate law more closely aligned with the wishes of the deceased doesn’t sound like a bad thing to me.

        Our resident fascist also shits on the right of contract.

  26. FINALLY the sane article on Reason about this subject that I was waiting for.
    Good work, Ed K., and kudos to Justin Amash.

    It would have been nice to have seen some of the other Reason editors address (or even acknowledge) these points in some of yesterday’s rainbow celebration posts.

    1. It will never happen. Reason only caters to same sex marriage rights. Polygamy? Oh, hell no! The gay libertarians got theirs and that is all that matters

      1. (snore) The woodchippin psycho says it’s discrimination to oppose polygamy (as a legal right)

      2. Prediction: Within the next six months, there will be a Reason feature article advocating for the legalization of polygamy.

        1. Within the next six months, there will be a Reason feature article advocating for the legalization of polygamy.

          (laughing)

  27. The APA lists gender dysphoria as a mental disorder.

    The definition of a disorder is something that inhibits or interferes with a normal function or established system. Mating the pairing and joining of members of the opposite sex is our normal function and established system.

    The genetics passed to the offspring of biological parents are important and meaningful. This is the only relationship that creates mothers fathers siblings and relatives. Family.

    The agenda of the LGBT community is to make all this meaningless and indoctrinate our children with lies.

    Next semester in all public schools in Ontario Canada the sex Ed curriculum is planned to change. The elected premier of Ontario is a lesbian and the author of the curriculum a convicted pedophile.

    The children as young as seven will begin being taught about explicit homosexual activities and that there are six genders of which they are one.

    I’m not making this up.

    The LGBT group plans this for your children also.

    It began with junk science propaganda and CHANGING a the established definition of marriage.

    In for a penny, in for a pound.

    1. Ron Misek
      I’m not making this up.

      Your drool is dripping from your chin onto your shirt.

      The LGBT group plans this for your children also.

      With help from the Illuminati and our Kenyan President?

  28. i wanna live in a society that bases its sexual mores on heinlein (starship troopers not stranger in a strange land, obviously)

  29. Government still discriminates on the basis of marital status. That hasn’t changed.

  30. Maybe in 10 or 20 years’ time, “society” will be ready to accept polygamy as the Court judged it was ready to accept gay marriage today.

    Ponies for some, manure for others. So sayeth the Lord the Court.

  31. States need to impose reasonable restrictions on same-sex marraige.

    http://www.nationalreview.com/…..-c-w-cooke

    “In which case, perhaps we ought also to take a look at New York City’s gun-permitting process, which not only requires individuals who wish to buy a firearm to go through the apparently devastating process of obtaining an acceptable ID but also to provide separately a proof of residence, a proof of citizenship or permanent residency, and a Social Security card; to pay $431.50 plus the cost of two color photographs; to wait an average of eight months for the application to be processed, and then attend a lengthy in-person interview; and, if the applicant has not lived in the United States for seven years (and many immigrants can become citizens after just three years, remember), to provide a certificate of good conduct from their foreign government. ”
    States should treat same-sex marriage the same way.

    1. States need to impose reasonable restrictions on same-sex marriage

      States have never been delegated even a smidgeon of power regarding marriage.
      I’m curious as to why you support New York City’s draconian gun registration laws.

  32. And now, here comes the lawsuits against eHarmony, JDate, and Christian Mingle . . . Equal Protection and Civil Rights . . . The government already defined marriage and everyone must comply.

    1. Have atheists sued JDate or Christian mingle?

    2. Have atheists sued JDate or Christian mingle?

      1. Have atheists sued JDate or Christian mingle?

        Most of us aren’t stupid enough to believe they are government owned!

        1. Neither are cake bakers

          1. Atheists haven’t sued any cake bakers either!

            If you want to paste sound bites, read first to see if they make a lick of sense,

    3. “And now, here comes the lawsuits against eHarmony,…+

      That one has already happened.

  33. For thousands of years, marriage flourished without a universal definition and without government intervention

    Hooray for Omash! Calling out the bullshit about “traditional marriage” peddled by the Christian Taliban and the Paulista Cult

    Marriage was not a religious sacrament until the 17th century. For 80% of the Christian Era alone, marriage was a totally private agreement between individuals (even in cultures with arranged marriages).

    So it takes a rather massive dose of dishonesty for anyone to claim what those unions were ,.. with no church or state records at all. But bigots have never been deterred by facts, nor their tribal followers.

    1. If I were you, I would not worry a whit about any damage any “Christian” is going to lay on you.

      Your energy will be far better spent on this thing called “islam”. THAT is where the real devil exists.

      1. Umm, I worry about both. But not as a bigot to either.
        Is the ISIS Airforce large enough to get through our defenses?
        Our own aggression against Muslim countries has been very deadly. To us.

        “Those who ignore the lessons of history are doomed to repeat them”
        We stuck our nose into the Japan/Chinese war, which was never a threat to us, and suffered Pearl Harbor. Then we stuck our nose into a thousand-year war in the Middle East, which was also no threat to us, and suffered 9/11.

        Now, the hawks want us to use our military power to guarantee Israel is the ONLY nuclear power in the region. Again we empower ISIS recruiters , who now asks, “If nobody else is allowed nuclear weapons, why does Israel NEED them, except to continue their aggression.”

        I often wonder if these same hawks would have supported Russia as the world’s only nuclear power during the Cold War It’s as if our military strategy was “planned” by George Custer!

    2. I’m days late, but I’m calling bullshit on your rubbish. The understanding of marriage being between a man and a woman predates Christianity. It is not universal, rare exceptions exist(No True Scotsman) but most societies historically had the same basic understanding of how it works: 1 man; 1 woman; woman cannot sleep with men aside from husband (rules for men vary); marriage must be consummated between man and woman. Marriage is a program to promote breeding and grow tribes. Let’s not ascribe to it something it is not.

      The Waldensian Heresy ended in the early 1200’s with official acceptance of marriage as a sacrament. Forget Christianity, marriage has been a matter of civil law for 4 millennia. (Eg Hammurabi’s Code). Marriage has been historically governed by the state. Gov / Tribe was just as involved then as today (perhaps more so) except for licensure. Taxes and marriage have been related for millennia–Bachelor’s Taxes date at least to Augustus ca. 10 AD.

      If you want to have a discussion on the merits of redefining a word to mean something it does not and never has; or whether or not the government should be involved in it, that’s a perfectly fine discussion. But let’s start from a position of truth on the subject not a deceitful one. (You might check your hatred for Christianity / Paul at the door. It’s not relevant or conducive)

  34. So, if I take the meaning of this article correctly, it will be perfectly okay for men and women to have multiple spouses, for Muslim American men to marry girls as young as 13, for fathers to marry their daughters and mothers to marry their sons, for both sexes (sorry, I still believe there are only two genders) to marry their pets, etc. If the people have no power to tell their representatives, whether at the state or national level, to define through law the the nature of marriage, these next steps are the logical conclusion. Would you not agree? And if you do, may God help us all.

    1. So, if I take the meaning of this article correctly,

      Fortunately, you don’t take it correctly.

      If the people have no power to tell their representatives, whether at the state or national level, to define through law the the nature of marriage, these next steps are the logical conclusion. Would you not agree

      This is NOT a democracy. Never was.
      States have NEVER been delegated ANY power in ANY aspect of marriage, nor federal.
      Where in the Constitution does a vote overturn equal, unalienable and/or God-Given Rights.
      Why do you Progs have such open disdain for our constitutional rights and freedoms?

    2. FloridaProf

      You do realize a number of those scenarios you mentioned involved parties that cannot legally consent to a contract right?

      Inciting retarded things like child and pet marriage kinda sucks all the “logic” out of your argument.

      Oh, and my rights are NOT up for majority vote. Sorry.

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  36. Marriage has always been about property (which includes taxes and immigration among other activities that are the sole responsibility of the the state).

    Amash is a fool to think removing the state from marriage is wise, possible, or desirable.

    1. true, but states were never delegated a single ounce of power regarding marriage.

      Instead of pissing and moaning about imaginary demons, remember that Hobby Lobby established a precedent for individual liberty. If priests and ministers are forced to perform gay weddings, then it would be difficult to uphold such a requirement for marriage ceremonies.
      Scalia would have to do his typical bellowing from both sides of the issue. His own opinion would be cited in the majority opinion, as it was regarding the Obamacare subsidies. In his dissent on the subsidies, he actually said that the legislature intended the subsidies even if the states chose to have no exchange,

      1. states were never delegated a single ounce of power regarding marriage

        Little civics lesson, but the individual states are each a separate sovereignty with plenary police power. The US constitution only delegates powers of the Federal government, leaving everything else to the states. States can essentially do anything unless the Constitution has forbidden it or the Federal government has “occupied the field.”

  37. Amash is right, that the government should get out of marriage, but I don’t see any feasible political path to this solution.

    Maybe at the state level, one of those states that is so opposed to gay marriage might decide to get out issuing marriage licenses altogether. That would probably be challenged in court. Not issuing marriage licenses would probably address the SCOTUS’ argument about Equal Protection, but it’s not clear it addresses the Due Process issues.

    And even if a state were to do this, there’s no way it would happen at the federal level…

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  40. But still limited to humans. Human-pet marriages are just around the corner,, especially since the sloppy thinking Kennedy claimed that marriage is defined by the participant.

    1. Arthur45|6.28.15 @ 3:30PM|#
      But still limited to humans. Human-pet marriages are just around the corner,, especially since the sloppy thinking Kennedy claimed that marriage is defined by the participant.

      Now you believe in talking dogs? Shame on you.

      If rights were defined by who exercised them in the past, then received practices could serve as their own continued justification and new groups could not invoke rights once denied. This Court has rejected that approach, both with respect to the right to marry and the rights of gays and lesbians

  41. First of marriage tax codes, fringe benefits,etc are discriminatory against singles.

  42. I’ve never really understood why anyone needs a state sanctioned marriage license anyway.

    And gays have always been able to get married, they just couldn’t get recognized by the state.

    So congratulations morons, you won practically nothing at all.

    1. David_B
      I’ve never really understood why anyone needs a state sanctioned marriage license anyway.
      And gays have always been able to get married, they just couldn’t get recognized by the state.
      So congratulations morons, you won practically nothing at all.

      BEST satire on the page!

  43. the phrase “Government gets out of marriage” doesn’t have a meaning. For religious people, yes, maybe it makes some sense. But even they would then expect tax breaks, inheritance rights, the right to medical decision, etc, etc.

  44. The court has signaled that incest will be sanctified prior to polygamy with its invocation of the “two consenting adults” standard.

    it is appropriate to observe these cases involve only the rights of two consenting adults whose marriages would pose no risk of harm to themselves or third parties.

    When the majority examined the SCOTUS precedent regarding marriage it concluded

    each case inquired about the right to marry in its comprehensive sense, asking if there was a sufficient justification for excluding the relevant class from the right.

    The court elucidated four guiding principles:
    1. The right to personal choice regarding marriage is inherent in the concept of individual autonomy,
    2. It supports a two-person union unlike any other in its importance to the committed individuals,
    3. It safeguards children and families and thus draws meaning from related rights of childrearing, procreation, and education, and
    4. That marriage is a keystone of our social order.
    Each principal supports constitutionally requiring incestuous marriages just as much as, if not more than, same-sex marriage.

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