Remember when you were like in grade school and you started your research paper with “Webster’s defines _______ as _______” and then you launched off into your topic? Well take a trip down memory lane with me as I explore a few objective definitions of MARRIAGE.
(1): the state of being united to a person of the opposite sex as husband or wife in a consensual and contractual relationship recognized by law.
(2): the state of being united to a person of the same-sex in a relationship like that of a traditional marriage.
(1) the social institution under which a man and woman establish their decision to live as husband and wife by legal commitments, religious ceremonies, etc.
(2) a similar institution involving partners of the same gender: gay marriage.
And my favorite place on the internet – Wikipedia.org:
Marriage is a social union or legal contract between people that creates kinship. The definition of marriage varies according to different cultures, but is usually an institution in which interpersonal relationships, usually intimate and sexual, are acknowledged. Such a union is often formalized via a wedding ceremony.
The act of marriage usually creates normative or legal obligations between the individuals involved.
Civil marriage is the legal concept of marriage as a governmental institution irrespective of religious affiliation, in accordance with marriage laws of the jurisdiction.
I’m not ignoring the religious references mentioned above but I did deliberately highlight the legal references.
The concept of marriage has a long convoluted history but I’m not trying to get into all that right this second because I am focused on the present and right here in the year that is 2012 there are a few aspects of marriage that are irrefutable:
1. You can be legally wed without EVER stepping foot in a church. You and your boo can fill out the proper paperwork (e.g., license/certificate), drive your gleeful selves down to the local courthouse (or Vegas), get a total stranger to act as a witness and viola – you is married now.
2. Even if you do get married in a church you still need – wait for it – the proper LEGAL documentation before your new wedded bliss is officially recognized by the GOVERNMENT.
3. As a result of being “legally” wed you and your boo will have the following GOVERNMENT SANCTIONED RIGHTS (condensed version):
- joint parenting rights, such as access to children’s school records
- family visitation rights for the spouse and non-biological children, such as to visit a spouse in a hospital or prison
- next-of-kin status for emergency medical decisions or filing wrongful death claims
- custodial rights to children, shared property, child support, and alimony after divorce
- Funeral and bereavement leave
- Joint adoption and foster care
- Joint tax filing
- Legal status with stepchildren
- Making spousal medical decisions
- Permission to make funeral arrangements for a deceased spouse, including burial or cremation
- Right to inheritance of property
- AND, the right to annoy the hell out of your spouse – ain’t marriage awesome!
Look here, if you have decided that you dislike the idea (or reality) of same-sex marriages for whatever reasons, okay fine, be that way – you are of course entitled to your opinion. Please keep in mind that same-sex couples will continue to thrive and prosper just fine without your endorsement. What you are NOT entitled to do is the following:
(1) Actively try to prevent same-sex couples from getting married. Seriously if the person is not trying to marry you why do you care so much?? Ooohhh yeah that’s right because you think it’s icky.
(2) Declare that you are no longer going to support a particular POTUS for having voiced his opinion that same-sex couples should be allowed to be married.
So you like the man less now? I could see if he drop kicked your baby across a football field or talked bad about your mother but for this? Nope, not trying to hear it. You do realize there are other matters regarding the governing of our nation that if allowed to fall into the wrong hands could put you and your family in serious jeopardy right?? Need I remind you of what 8 years of George Bush hath wrought?????
If you’ve decided that you do not want to vote for him for a legitimate reason okay cool but if it is based solely on him speaking publicly about what he probably always privately believed then you just may deserve what’s coming your way under a Romney administration. Keep messing around and see what happens.
I’m always curious about this point: Do you think that frothing at the mouth while waving your bible in the air and yelling about hell at the idea (reality) of same-sex marriage is actually going to stop gay people from being together?
Do you think YOUR opinion is going to end homosexuality altogether?? Because if that IS what you think then you are delusional and perhaps I should not have wasted my time writing this blog post.
OR, is it that because YOU disagree with it you don’t think gay couples should have access to the same rights and privileges that you and your spouse have? Well that just sounds mean-spirited and kinda evil.
And so what if it seems “odd” or “unnatural” to you – why are you all up in somebody else’s relationship anyway?? At certain junctures in our history acknowledging black people as human beings, women voting and Ice Cube doing family movies seemed “odd and unnatural” – ain’t it grand how we’ve evolved as a people?