Monday, June 05, 2006

Ultimate Godawful Wedding Crap

Bush went on air today to outline his plans to ensure that full civil rights are never extended to a significant minority of the United States population. The decision in Goodridge vs. Department of Public Health (Mass. Supreme Court) eloquently and beautifully outlines why this is wrong. All of us getting married right now need to be aware that we're exercising a fundamental right - and one that is currently denied many couples in this country: the right to full legal recognition of our mutual commitments and the familes we have created together.
Marriage is a vital social institution. The exclusive commitment of two individuals to each other nurtures love and mutual support; it brings stability to our society. For those who choose to marry, and for their children, marriage provides an abundance of legal, financial, and social benefits. In return it imposes weighty legal, financial, and social obligations. The question before us is whether, consistent with the Massachusetts Constitution, the Commonwealth may deny the protections, benefits, and obligations conferred by civil marriage to two individuals of the same sex who wish to marry. We conclude that it may not. The Massachusetts Constitution affirms the dignity and equality of all individuals. It forbids the creation of second-class citizens. In reaching our conclusion we have given full deference to the arguments made by the Commonwealth. But it has failed to identify any constitutionally adequate reason for denying civil marriage to same-sex couples. ... Without question, civil marriage enhances the “welfare of the community.” It is a “social institution of the highest importance.” ... Civil marriage anchors an ordered society by encouraging stable relationships over transient ones. It is central to the way the Commonwealth identifies individuals, provides for the orderly distribution of property, ensures that children and adults are cared for and supported whenever possible from private rather than public funds, and tracks important epidemiological and demographic data. Marriage also bestows enormous private and social advantages on those who choose to marry. Civil marriage is at once a deeply personal commitment to another human being and a highly public celebration of the ideals of mutuality, companionship, intimacy, fidelity, and family. “It is an association that promotes a way of life, not causes; a harmony in living, not political faiths; a bilateral loyalty, not commercial or social projects.” ... Because it fulfils yearnings for security, safe haven, and connection that express our common humanity, civil marriage is an esteemed institution, and the decision whether and whom to marry is among life’s momentous acts of self-definition.
For more information about the efforts to extend the freedom to marry to all people, check out these links: Lambda Legal Freedom to Marry Love Is Love Is Love Human Rights Campaign Normal snarkiness resumes tomorrow.


Twistie said...


As a happily married woman, I can think of nothing that would make me happier than to see marriage rights extended to gay and lesbian couples.

Tiffany said...

When we were meeting with our pastor for premarital counseling, we were discussing what it means to be married, and whether it's really dependent on words spoken in a church or signatures on a document.

It doesn't, of course, but then I said, "You know, I really just want everyone else to accord our relationship the same respect we already do."

I imagine it's a million times more frustrating for my gay friends.

Lovey H. said...

well, at least the Senate didn't vote for it:

michael said...

Except they did,lovey h; it still had a majority just not enough of one to pass.

TheUrbanFarmer said...

*sniff* Makes me proud to be a Bostonian!

Anonymous said...

Good grief, can even this site please stay out of politics? Especially if you are going to be off?

The rights-based argument is worse than the cure. If you go there, then you lose discretion entirely. There are plenty of cases that practically no one wants to support. For example, consider a brother and his widowed sister marrying. Few would support this, no matter how happy they are, no matter how much good they do to society by raising her child together.

Worse, though, this is a victory and you don't even realize it. Bush is giving up on the issue, and is falling back to symbolic gestures. This amendment is doomed. If Bush were serious, he would push for an amendment that lets Congress decide.