Thursday, November 7, 2013

Another of my Unpopular Opinions

Illinois is about to get same-sex marriage and I’m against it and I think I need to state my position on this so that there’s no misconstruing it. 

It’s not because I’m homophobic. In fact, I’m bisexual. (How bisexual? Before I met my future wife, the longest relationship I’d ever had was my four-year high-school relationwhip with Wally.) I’m certainly not in favor of penalizing homosexuals, favor equal opportunities for them in jobs and housing, I just don’t think their relationships constitute a marriage. 

And, though I am a Catholic, and believe the sacrament of marriage was ordained by God, I also believe that civil marriage is a contract and the state has every right to regulate contract law in such a way as to benefit society as a whole. It may be blasphemous for two men, or divorced persons, or anybody else to merely SAY they are married, but blasphemy is no business of the state.
Completely gratuitous picture of Harry Hay

No — from the state’s point of view this is property law. The state is conferring a special relationship, with special prerogatives, tax advantages, and benefits upon people entering into a contractual relationship, and we must ask why these people deserve these benefits. 

I believe it is because that the ONLY thing that this contract contributes to benefit society is the creation of families. And by that I do not mean the formation of a mere household, but the begetting and raising of children. These children are our future, they are the citizens of tomorrow, they are the people paying out our pensions when we retire, and cleaning our bed-pans when we are senile and invalided. 

When we postulate the creation of families as the purpose of marriage, then "marriage equality" becomes nonsensical, because same sex couples cannot create children, and are thus intrinsically unequal to heterosexual couples. 

We in the industrialized West are faced with a demographic crisis. We are barely replacing our numbers and those who would make the best parents (and presumably have the best children) are having the least children. The simple fact is that the more education a woman has, the fewer children she is likely to have. Our best educated women are wasting this education on vulgar commerce instead of having children and we should do something about it. 

We could start by forgiving a portion of student loans for second and third children. We could re-structure our income taxes to penalize couples where both earn high incomes as an incentive for capable women to remain home with their children, We could increase the exemption for children, improve the quality of our schools, any number of things. 

But extending the benefits of marriage to sterile couples is exactly the wrong policy in the face of this demographic crisis.