January 26, 2005

Sex: Equal, But Different Redux

Stephen Harper and his Conservatives have said that they want the “traditional definition of marriage” of one man and one woman to remain, but they’ll give gays the “right” to a civil union that includes all legal benefits of marriage. In theory, this would make sure that the old and/or religious are happy, what with gays not being able to marry, and this will make sure that gays are happy, because they have all rights of marriage.

So, explain again how this isn’t marriage? If it’s not marriage because it didn’t happen in a church, then there are a whole lot of people who aren’t married, but think they are! Anyone who got “civilly unionized” outdoors, for instance; or in their homes; or temples; or any other locations that hold a special meaning for them.

If he’s thinking to stop polygamy (the spectre he keeps raising while his Deputy Peter McKay claims he isn’t), how will that help? The exact same arguments for and against simply get transferred to another word, while the concerns remain.

I still haven’t seen any logical argument opposing gay marriage. If tomorrow as much as 10% of the population suddenly decided to marry each other, my own marriage simply will not be affected in any way, shape or form. I will not turn to my wife suddenly, saying “Well, dear, now that these folks can get hitched, I don’t love you any more.” It seems as likely to me that some of those against gay marriage are homosexuals trying to get out of a promise they made one too-late night. That, I could understand. Weddings are bloody expensive, after all.

Besides, imagine the changes to all the government forms that would have to be made: that expense alone should have the more extreme of the fiscal conservatives thinking twice. But also in a practical sense, even if Mr. Harper got all he wanted, and civil unions were permitted for gays, there’s nobody who would call them that. Civil unions happen now between heterosexual couples who simply walk down to the Notary Public and get the forms: yet I know of no one who does not call these couples “married”. No church, no minister, no religion of any kind, and yet they’re married.

If conservatives were truly concerned about the sanctity of marriage, they should be trying to make infidelity warrant jail time, and divorce absolutely forbidden. The truth of this matter is that all the name change does is allow those opposed to gay marriage to continue considering homosexuals second class citizens.


posted by Thursday at 8:16 pm


Post a Comment

<< Home