On Same Sex Marriage...
Idaho is currently engaged in a debate as to whether or not join the few other states in the union who are proposing a State Constitutional ban on same sex marriage. Now, I realize that a lot of you might get a giggle or snort out of that one; “Idaho, humph, I’m not surprised”, but people fail to realize that this is more of a test than anything, a test of political nerve, and a test of tolerance and acceptance.
Unfortunately, if we fail the test we will alienate a minority of our population, and prove once and for all that; yes, the majority of Idahoans are bigots.
Now this isn’t the first time that the bigots and hate mongers have come out of their little caves, they’ve tried it before, but our state government has worked, this time it didn’t. In the past the proposed amendment has been shut down in committee. Legislators, some Republicans included, knew that if the bill was to pass committee and make it to the full Idaho House and the Idaho Senate, and then on to the ballot it would most definitely pass.
This is where our Government prevails; or used to prevail, this time the Legislators have for some reason or another been convinced otherwise. Now I realize that a lot of people think that the purpose of our Government is to act out the will of the people, in essence creating an air of mob rule, but alas it does not, one of the greatest responsibilities of an elected Representative is to protect the rights of the minority, all while representing the majority.
This is a point that most Republicans are only able to wrap their heads around when they are in the minority. To them, all bets are off when they are in the majority (which has a good possibility of ending in the fall of this year).
So who gets to define marriage? The religious leaders? The people that are so insecure in their own marriages and sexuality that they feel they need to safeguard “their” definition of marriage?
Local wingnut king Bryan Fisher of the Idaho Values Alliance argues that;
This understanding establishes marriage as the relationship in which sexual intimacy may be legitimately enjoyed, in which children can be conceived, born, and raised to maturity, and through which the values of one generation are transmitted to the next.
Bryan says that the purpose of marriage is one in which “children can be conceived, born, and raised to maturity”, alas, a most logical fallacy in the fight to afford the privilege of marriage to selected members of society.
I’m married, I’ve been married for 6 years and guess what, here comes something so outrageously shocking that perhaps my marriage should be voided: My wife and I have no plans to “conceive, give birth to and raise to maturity” a child. Nope. We are content with loving one another and living the rest of our lives together. We took an oath when we got married, and there was nothing, not one thing in there about having children. Does this make our marriage any less valuable than the couple who has 2, 4, or even 6 kids? It’s our marriage, not anyone else’s, and recognized by the state as such.
My wife and I did something different in our vows (right out of the Wonder Years if you ever saw Karen get married, but we didn’t included it because of that needless to say), we had this read after our convention vows:
On Marriage from Khalil Gibran:
Then Almitra spoke again and said, “And what of Marriage, master?”
And he answered saying:
You were born together, and together you shall be forevermore.
You shall be together when white wings of death scatter your days.
Aye, you shall be together even in the silent memory of God.
But let there be spaces in your togetherness,
And let the winds of the heavens dance between you.
Love one another but make not a bond of love:
Let it rather be a moving sea between the shores of your souls.
Fill each other’s cup but drink not from one cup.
Give one another of your bread but eat not from the same loaf.
Sing and dance together and be joyous, but let each one of you be alone,
Even as the strings of a lute are alone though they quiver with the same music.
Give your hearts, but not into each other’s keeping.
For only the hand of Life can contain your hearts.
And stand together, yet not too near together:
For the pillars of the temple stand apart,
And the oak tree and the cypress grow not in each other’s shadow.
These were our vows, no one else’s, we’ve never forced this on anyone, and we never will. They are for us. One’s definition of marriage is their own, and nothing more, no definition is more important than any other definition.
Why is it that people believe they must have kids, that if they don’t, they shouldn’t even be married? Most importantly why does one group of people want to impose their definition of marriage on people who do not believe in the same narrow minded definition? The definition of the marriage is in the eye of the beholder, and no one else, and that definition should never be imposed on people who do not believe likewise.
What about a couple who for medical reasons can not have any kids? Should they not be allowed to marry? One could argue that if some on the Right had their way, we’d all be tested, those who can have kids (genetic defect free of course) can marry, those who cannot have kids or who would produce dysfunctional kids shall not be afforded the “Right” to a legally recognized marriage. Yes, that’s right Clayton, the “Right” to marriage.
I do think that same-sex marriage needs to be stopped. But I also think that we need to look seriously at why straight marriage is in serious trouble. Some of it is that no-fault divorce has made it too easy to leave. But the bigger problem is a culture built on selfishness, not on compromise and concern for one’s spouse.
Exactly Clayton, you need to fix the problems associated with straight sex marriage before you worry your little ole heart about same sex marriages.
Clayton, who notably feels so strong about the issue even decided to take the day off and fight the craziness of downtown Boise just to offer up his testimony against marriage (notice, the testify “against” part? Yeah, I can spin like any ardent grade right winger too).
Clayton is a proud foot soldier in the war on marriage, after all, it’s the only kind of war proud (read: yellow belly) Republicans sign up for; ones that can be fought while sitting on their asses typing at a keyboard. I’ve heard bullets have a hard time coming through computer screens.
Point being, and there is one to be taken away, my marriage is my own, no one else’s. Let yours be yours, and let theirs be theirs.
You know, “Live and let Live”?