Beyond "gay marriage".On August 4, 2003, a 17-page-long article appeared in the Weekly Standard. Its author, Stanley Kurtz, a research fellow at the Hoover Institute, investigates both the background to the current drive for same-sex marriage Noun 1. same-sex marriage - two people of the same sex who live together as a family; "the legal status of same-sex marriages has been hotly debated"
couple, twosome, duet, duo - a pair who associate with one another; "the engaged couple"; "an inseparable and some of the effects its authors hope to achieve. Catholic Insight brings you a summary of its main points. We would like to draw the attention of our readers especially to the section about Canada. Editor
Marriage is a critical social institution. Stable families depend on it. Society depends on stable families. Up to now, with all the changes in marriage, the one thing we have been sure of is that marriage means monogamy monogamy: see marriage. . Gay marriage will break that connection. It will do this by itself, and by leading to polygamy polygamy: see marriage.
Marriage to more than one spouse at a time. Although the term may also refer to polyandry (marriage to more than one man), it is often used as a synonym for polygyny (marriage to more than one woman), which appears and polyamory Polyamory (from Greek πολυ (poly, literally “multiple”) & Latin amor . What lies beyond gay marriage is no marriage at all.
There is a rational basis for blocking both gay marriage and polygamy, and it does not depend upon a vague or religiously based disapproval of homosexuality orpolygamy. Children need the stable family environment provided by marriage. In our individualist Western society, marriage must be companionate--and therefore monogamous. Monogamy will be undermined by gay marriage itself, and by gay marriage's ushering in Noun 1. ushering in - the introduction of something new; "it signalled the ushering in of a new era"
first appearance, introduction, debut, entry, launching, unveiling - the act of beginning something new; "they looked forward to the debut of their new product line" of polygamy and polyamory.
The media's reflexive labeling of doubts about gay marriage as homophobia has made it almost impossible to debate the social effects of this reform. Advocacy of legalized polygamy is growing. A network of grass-roots organizations seeking legal recognition for group marriage already exists. The cause of legalized group marriage is championed by a powerful faction of family law specialists. Influential legal bodies in both the United States United States, officially United States of America, republic (2005 est. pop. 295,734,000), 3,539,227 sq mi (9,166,598 sq km), North America. The United States is the world's third largest country in population and the fourth largest country in area. and Canada have presented radical programs of marital reform. Some of these quasi-governmental proposals go so far as to suggest the abolition of marriage. The media and public spokesmen, meanwhile, treat the issue as an unproblematic advance for civil rights.
To consider what comes after gay marriage is not to say that gay marriage itself poses no danger to the institution of marriage. Quite apart from the likelihood that it will usher in Verb 1. usher in - be a precursor of; "The fall of the Berlin Wall ushered in the post-Cold War period"
commence, lead off, start, begin - set in motion, cause to start; "The U.S. legalized polygamy and polyamory, gay marriage will almost certainly weaken the belief that monogamy lies at the heart of marriage. But to see why this is so, we will first need to reconnoitre reconnoitre or US reconnoiter
to make a reconnaissance of [obsolete French reconnoître]
Verb 1. reconnoitre - explore, often with the goal of finding something or somebody
reconnoiter, scout the slippery slope 'slippery slope' Medical ethics An ethical continuum or 'slope,' the impact of which has been incompletely explored, and which itself raises moral questions that are even more on the ethical 'edge' than the original issue .
There are now many organizations favouring group marriage. And their strategy--their existence--owes much to the movement for gay marriage.
Why is state-sanctioned polygamy a problem? The deep reason is that it erodes the ethos of monogamous marriage. In most non-Western cultures, marriage is not a union of freely choosing individuals, but an alliance of family groups. The emotional relationship between husband and wife is attenuated Attenuated
Alive but weakened; an attenuated microorganism can no longer produce disease.
Mentioned in: Tuberculin Skin Test
having undergone a process of attenuation. and subordinated to the economic and political interests of extended kin. But in our [Western] world of freely choosing individuals, extended families fall away, and love and companionship are the only surviving principles on which families can be built. From Thomas Aquinas through Richard Posner, almost every serious observer has granted the incompatibility between polygamy and Western companionate com·pan·ion·ate
1. Having the qualities of a companion.
2. Harmonious; suitable.
com·panion·ate·ly adv. ionate marriage.
Polyamory comprises a bewildering be·wil·der
tr.v. be·wil·dered, be·wil·der·ing, be·wil·ders
1. To confuse or befuddle, especially with numerous conflicting situations, objects, or statements. See Synonyms at puzzle.
2. variety of sexual combinations. There are triads of one woman and two men; heterosexual group marriages; groups in which some or all members are bisexual; lesbian groups, and so forth.
Polyamorists are enthusiastic proponents of same-sex marriage. Obviously, any attempt to restrict marriage to a single man and woman would prevent the legalization LEGALIZATION. The act of making lawful.
2. By legalization, is also understood the act by which a judge or competent officer authenticates a record, or other matter, in order that the same may be lawfully read in evidence. Vide Authentication. of polyamory. After passage of the [American] Defense of Marriage Act in 1996, an article appeared in Loving More, the flagship magazine of the polyamory movement, calling for the creation of a polyamorist rights movement modeled on the movement for gay rights. The piece was published under the pen name Joy Singer, identified as the graduate of a "top ten law school" and a political organizer and public official in California for the previous two decades.
Marriages based on modern principles of companionate love, without religious rules and restraints, are unstable. Like the short-lived hippie communes, group marriages will be broken on the contradiction between companionate love and group solidarity. And children will pay the price.
Family law radicals
State-sanctioned polyamory is now the cutting-edge issue among scholars of family law. The preeminent school of thought in academic family law has its origins in the arguments of radical gay activists who once opposed same-sex marriage.
"Being queer," said one of its leading advocates, Paula Ettelbrick, "means pushing the parameters of sex and family, and in the process transforming the very fabric of society."
Paula Ettelbrick, Nancy Polikoff, Martha Fineman, Martha Ertman, Judith Stacey, David Chambers, and Martha Minow are among the most prominent family law theorists in the country. They have plenty of followers and hold much of the power and initiative within their field. There may be other approaches to academic family law, but none exceed the radicals in influence.
The first real public triumph of the family law radicals came in Canada. In 1972, Trudeau established the Law Commission of Canada to serve Parliament and the Justice Ministry as a kind of advisory board on legal reform. It was dissolved by Prime Minister Mulroney but immediately revived by Jean Chretien on his election as Prime Minister in 1993. In December 2001, the commission submitted a report to Parliament called Beyond Conjugality con·ju·gal
Of or relating to marriage or the relationship of spouses.
[Latin coniug , which stops just short of recommending the abolition of marriage in Canada The Canadian federal government has exclusive authority governing marriage and divorce in Canada under section 91(26) of the Constitution of Canada . However section 92(12) of the Constitution gives the provinces the power to pass laws regulating the solemnization of .
Beyond Conjugality contains three basic recommendations. First, judges are directed to concentrate on whether the individuals before them are "functionally interdependent," regardless of their actual marital status marital status,
n the legal standing of a person in regard to his or her marriage state. . On that theory, a household consisting of an adult child still living with his mother might be treated as the functional equivalent of a married couple. In so disregarding marital status, the report is clearly drawing on the work of Minow, whose writings are listed in the bibliography.
The Report's second key recommendation is that a legal structure be established allowing people to register their personal relationships with the government. Not only could heterosexual couples register as official partners, so could gay couples, adult children living with parents, and siblings or friends sharing a house. Although the authors are politic enough to relegate rel·e·gate
tr.v. rel·e·gat·ed, rel·e·gat·ing, rel·e·gates
1. To assign to an obscure place, position, or condition.
2. To assign to a particular class or category; classify. See Synonyms at commit. the point to footnotes, they state that they see no reason, in principle, to limit registered partnerships to two people.
The final recommendation of Beyond Conjugality--legalization of same-sex marriage--drew the most publicity when the report was released. Yet for the Law Commission of Canada, same-sex marriage is clearly just one part of the larger project of doing away with marriage itself. Beyond Conjugality stops short of recommending the abolition of legal marriage. The authors glumly glum
adj. glum·mer, glum·mest
1. Moody and melancholy; dejected.
2. Gloomy; dismal.
1. note that, for the moment, the public is unlikely to accept such a step.
The text of Beyond Conjugality, its bibliography, and the Law Commission of Canada's other publications unmistakably reveal the influence of the radical theorists who now dominate the discipline of family law. Collapsing the distinction between cohabitation A living arrangement in which an unmarried couple lives together in a long-term relationship that resembles a marriage.
Couples cohabit, rather than marry, for a variety of reasons. They may want to test their compatibility before they commit to a legal union. and marriage is a proposal especially damaging to children, who are decidedly better off when born to married parents.
Further confirmation, if any were needed, of the mainstream influence of the family law radicals came with Al and Tipper Gore's 2002 book (Al was the U.S. Vice-President under Clinton) Joined at the Heart, in which they define a family as those who are "joined at the heart" (rather than by blood or by law). The notion that a family is any group "joined at the heart" comes straight from Harvard's Martha Minow, who worked with the Gores. In fact, the article from which the Gores take their definition of family is also the one in which Minow tentatively floats the idea of substituting domestic partnership registries for traditional marriage. ("Redefining Families: Who's In and Who's Out?" University of Colorado University of Colorado may refer to:
Polygamy, polyamory, and the abolition of marriage are bad ideas. But what has that got to do with "gay marriage"? The reason these ideas are connected is that "gay marriage" is increasingly being treated as a civil rights issue. Once we concede this, it becomes next to impossible to deny that same right to polygamists, polyamorists, or even cohabiting relatives and friends. And once everyone's relationship is recognized, marriage is gone, and only a system of flexible relationship contracts is left. The only way to stop "gay marriage" from launching a slide down this slope is if there is a compelling state interest in blocking polygamy or polyamory that does not also apply to gay marriage. Many would agree that the state has an interest in preventing polygamy and polyamory from undermining the ethos of monogamy at the core of marriage. The trouble is, "gay marriage" itself threatens the ethos of monogamy.
The "conservative" case for "gay marriage" holds that state-sanctioned marriage will reduce "gay" male promiscuity Promiscuity
See also Profligacy.
constantly flits from one girl to another. [Aust. Drama: Schnitzler Anatol in Benét, 33]
promiscuous goddess of sensual love. [Gk. Myth. . But what if the effect works in reverse? What if, instead of marriage reducing gay promiscuity, sexually open gay couples help redefine marriage as a non-monogamous institution? There is evidence that this is exactly what will happen.
Even moderate gay advocates of same-sex marriage grant that, at present, gay male relationships are far less monogamous than heterosexual relationships. And there is a persuasive literature on this subject: Gabriel Rotello's "Sexual Ecology," for example, offers a documented and powerful account of the behavioural and ideological barriers to monogamy among gay men.
Gay marriages of convenience
Ironically, the form of gay matrimony MATRIMONY. See Marriage. that may pose the greatest threat to the institution of marriage involves heterosexuals. A Brigham Young University Brigham Young University, at Provo, Utah; Latter-Day Saints; coeducational; opened as an academy in 1875 and became a university in 1903. It is noted for its law and business schools. professor, Alan J. Hawkins, suggests an all-too-likely scenario in which two heterosexuals of the same sex might marry as a way of obtaining financial benefits. Consider the plight of an underemployed un·der·em·ployed
1. Employed only part-time when one needs and desires full-time employment.
2. Inadequately employed, especially employed at a low-paying job that requires less skill or training than one possesses. and uninsured single mother in her early 30s who sees little real prospect of marriage (to a man) in her future. Suppose she has a good friend, also female and heterosexual, who is single and childless but employed with good spousal benefits spousal benefits Social medicine Benefits, including health and life insurance, provided to a spouse–ie, husband or wife–of an employee; in socially advanced nations and in the US, SBs may be extended to unmarried–including same sex–partners . Sooner or later, friends like this are going to start contracting same-sex marriages of convenience. The single mom will get medical and governmental benefits, will share her friend's paycheck, and will gain an additional caretaker for the kids besides. Her friend will gain companionship and a family life. The marriage would obviously be sexually open. And if lightning struck and the right man came along for one of the women, they could always divorce and marry heterosexually.