It seems fitting that I write about the recent Supreme Court decision, so if you’re not a fan of marriage equality, you might want to click away now. Or move to Canada or light yourself on fire or whatever it is you’ve decided to do.
As most of my readers know, I’m not heterosexual. So you can understand that the SCOTUS decision warms my little, energy-laden heart. Equality is very important to me, and there has never been a justifiable reason for prohibiting marriage between people of the same sex. It’s fine if you don’t personally agree with it, or if your religious beliefs say it’s wrong, but that’s not a good enough reason to make a law against it.
Some argue that government should have no role in marriage at all, and I’ll admit there’s some sense in that. But so long as legal spouses have rights not available to others, there needs to be some official record of marriages and a way to enforce those rights. It doesn’t have to be the government, of course, but if it has any role in marriage, that would be it.
Opponents are saying that the Supreme Court shouldn’t be able to say who can marry. And I agree. But I would point out that no entity should be able to say who cannot marry, so these opponents need to drop that argument. If a particular church or an entire religion wishes to forbid it, that’s fine. Churches aren’t required to perform same-sex weddings.
One of the more amusing arguments that’s been spouted for years is that granting marriage equality to anyone other than male/female couples will inevitably lead to people being able to marry children, animals, sock puppets, or to have multiple spouses (a.k.a. “spice”).
These arguments are mostly ludicrous, of course. Children do not have the ability to enter into a binding contract, which is what a marriage is, in the eyes of the law. (Whether that should be the case is another discussion entirely.) So until we reduce or eliminate the “age of majority,” children can’t marry. As for animals and inanimate objects, they cannot give consent, even if they are eighteen years old.
So what about multiple marriage?
Those who’ve read the chronicles of my life know that my first serious relationship was a triad. I was involved with two women, who were also involved with each other. And though I’ve never had another polyamorous arrangement since then, I continue to see it as a viable and healthy relationship paradigm. And I have yet to hear an argument against the legality of group marriage that makes any more sense than the arguments against same-sex marriage.
The SCOTUS decision was, without question, another step in the direction of true equality. But there are still plenty of steps to go.