What the Marriage Debate Is & Isn’t

Today judges on the Ninth Circuit again insisted that California’s Proposition 8 (a constitutional amendment to protect traditional marriage) violates the U.S. Constitution. Los Angeles Archbishop José Gomez responds:

The court’s decision reflects a basic confusion about what marriage is and what marriage is for, and about why the government has an interest in promoting and strengthening marriage.

Marriage, in every culture and every age, has been recognized as the lifelong union of a man and woman for their own well-being and for the creation and nurturing of children.

Our government has a vital interest in promoting marriage for two reasons. First, because marriage is the foundation of society. Second, because government has a duty to promote the well-being of children, who have the right to be born and raised in a family with both their mother and their father.

This debate over marriage is not about equality or about the needs of individuals. It is much bigger than that. It is about the nature of the human person and the nature of society.

The government has no competence and no authority to “redefine” marriage or “expand” its definition to include other kinds of relationships. To do that is to say that marriage no longer exists. And this would have grave consequences for children and for the common good of our society.

As this case continues to make its way through in our court system, we will continue to pray for an ultimate outcome that supports and strengthens the true meaning of marriage.

Speaking of confusion, David French reads the decision and concludes:

Marriage matters a great deal, but it has no effect on child-rearing decisions. Marriage is significant, but changing its definition won’t impact religious liberty.

What a mess. Though Prop 8 voters seemed to think through the issue much more clearly. Unless you are on the Ninth Circuit and think California voters are largely bigots.

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260 thoughts on “What the Marriage Debate Is & Isn’t

  1. Daniel says:

    I would LOVE to hear what the definition of “water” is in Logike’s universe. We know that it can be for one and only one ordered purpose, which is perhaps for drinking? (That would mean that swimming and washing are just a couple of disordered uses). And of course Logike’s definition wouldn’t be complete unless it specified WHO is drinking. Because, in Logike’s universe, a word can’t mean two different things. So it can’t be something that people drink AND something that plants absorb AND something that fish swim in. Or, if FISH swim in it, it can’t be something that PEOPLE swim in – obviously that would be redefining “water”. Exhausting !

    1. Logike says:

      Daniel: Huh? Water=H2O. My argument only holds for biological organisms which have various organs, powers, and capacities naturally ordered to carrying out certain tasks according to their proper functions. The heart is for pumping blood, the intestines for digestion, the anus for pooping, the genitalia for procreation. Water may have various uses for organisms, sure, but water itself is not a biological organism ordered to specific ends, obviously.

    2. Logike says:

      Daniel: “Because, in Logike’s universe, a word can’t mean two different things.”——You’re not very bright are you….. Words can mean two different things, but those meanings must coherently refer to something in the outside world if you are going to say anything truthful by using those words, like the two meanings of the word “bank.” The first refers to a kind of financial institution. The latter refers to the dirt next to a river, a pond, or a lake. So here’s the problem: you can SAY, for instance, that the word “dog” has two meanings, such as Canine and Feline, but that doesn’t mean a dog REALLY IS a Feline, much less that this definition is coherent. The latter definition is false. Likewise, you can SAY “marriage is the commitment of two people,” but you cannot rationally maintain this definition without admitting non-marital incestuous, polygamous, adulterous, and best-friends relationship into the fold as well because you severed marriage from having anything to do with sexual complimentarity, procreation, and family. So your definition is false. For these reasons defining words with meanings which have no coherent connection to the outside world is just an artful way of tossing word salads.

  2. Luigi says:

    When women gained the right to vote, did that redefine voting? No. The voting process remained the same even after women were allowed to participate. And when lunch counters were de-segregated, did that change the definition of lunch? No. It simply provided a place at the table to people who had previously been excluded. The rhetoric that allowing same-sex couples to marry somehow “redefines” marriage makes about as much sense. And while the author has a point that “because they want it” isn’t a legitimate rationale for legal recognition of same-sex marriages, there are many vallid reasons that the author chooses not to address. As a wise man said, We encourage couples to marry because the commitments they make to one another provide benefits not only to themselves but also to their families and communities. Marriage requires thinking beyond one’s own needs. It transforms two individuals into a union based on shared aspirations, and in doing so establishes a formal investment in the well-being of society. The fact that individuals who happen to be gay want to share in this vital social institution is evidence that conservative ideals enjoy widespread acceptance. Conservatives should celebrate this, rather than lament it.

    1. Logike says:

      Luigi: What are you talking about? Just like the right to vote, everyone has the right to marriage, homosexuals and heterosexuals alike, since everyone is equal before the Marriage Laws. Marriage is the union of man and woman for the procreation and rearing of children, and this definition of marriage is framed in the Constitutions and Statutes of 43 States. So sanctioning gay couples WOULD change the meaning of the words “marriage” and “to marrry” in these States, you goof.————-What YOU mean by the word “marriage” is something different. So you are requesting an ADDITIONAL right for yourself and others I myself don’t even recognize as having. But it is not clear that anyone has right to this thing, whatever it is.

      1. Luigi says:

        So, you get the right to marry the adult to whom god or nature has given you a mutual attraction … homosexuals get the right to marry someone to whom they have no such god-given natural attraction … and you call that having the same right? I hold that the state has no business looking into our pants, nor into our bedrooms. And YOUR assertion that “marriage” means “man and woman” is a flawed argument in favor of the conclusion you hope to support. Marriage is a commitment that two people make to one another, that benefits those two people, and any children who may become part of their household, and the community of which they are members. And I told you before, you can refer to me as either “Luigi” or “Sir”. Such impudence, to interject name-calling into a civil conversation. Why does this website even continue to publish your posts, when civil discourse from others is censored?

        1. Patrick says:

          Luigi: If Bruce passes gas it gets posted here. Sorry to hear that your civil discourse has sometimes been censored here. Not surprising. The other Catholic bloggers agree that this site is the worst offender in that regard.

        2. Logike says:

          Luigi: First, I don’t recognize what the alleged “right” it is to which you are referring when you say, “so-and-so has the right to marry that person to whom he or she is attracted.” Do you think the mutual attraction between incestual family members is a sufficient reason for legally sanctioning their relationship too? If not, then no such “right” exists.——Second, for the same reason above, if marriage is nothing more than the commitment two people make to eachother, then committed incestual relationships are also marriages. But I’m pretty sure society already has really good health reasons for not encouraging these kinds of relationships.——Third, I agree the State has no business looking into our pants or our bedrooms. But we’re not talking about the private right to sodomize another male, or the right of a gay couple to have their wedding ceremony. Sodomy and wedding ceremonies are already legal, haven’t you heard? Instead, we are talking about a PUBLIC INSTITUTION whose meaning a minority of individuals are trying to change against what the rest of society considers to be the Marriage Norm: one man, one woman, for the procreation and rearing of children. But society generally doesn’t tolerate large-scale changes in its social structure, particularly those involving marriage and family, unless there is some good reason for that change with respect to the overall public good. Truthfully, I honestly don’t know what that reason would be since gay couples are intrinsically sterile, and there is very little or no credible evidence of how adopted children fare in same-sex households. In the meantime, the research overwhelmingly indicates time and again that children fare better when raised by their married biological parents over any other family structure, including adoption. Surely, we allow adoption as a necessary evil for unwanted children, but we don’t promote it as the “norm.” So the core rationale for the government involvement in heteroseuxal marriages, as far as I can see it, is that from these types of unions children naturally arise, which are the future work-force and tax base of society. So the State would have a compelling an interest in encouraging those kinds of unions which procreate through tax breaks and legal benefits, and have a legitimate reason to deny benefits to those couples unwilling or unable to procreate, heterosexuals and homosexuals alike.——-Fourth, if you think I don’t have a good argument for traditional marriage, I can only tell you to read my dozens of posts right here and get back to me. Your charge simply isn’t true.——Fifth, you might want to relax, Luigi. Calling you “a goof” might be a name, but it is far from hostile or uncivil. Give me a break.

          1. Luigi says:

            Logike, 1) I’m beyond shocked to hear a “Christian” calling adoption a necessary social evil – what exactly do you think the man who raised Jesus was? All this barking about how families must conform to the “norm” dictated by society – what bold disrespect to the holy family! 2) Your mention of granting license to incestuous relationships is a red herring – totally besides the point. This kind of “then where do you draw the line” nonsense distracts from the discussion of ways in which the line is currently drawn in the wrong place 3) If you need to see the reasons why society should sanction same-sex relationship, you can just look at page 2 of comments to this article, where some user named “LOGIKE” demonstrated numerous negative outcomes that result from denying same-sex couples the opportunity to marry. Communities pay a price for discouraging lifelong commitments between same-sex couples. 4) I think you make a great case for traditional marriage. For the record, I’ve never met a homosexual opposed to traditional marriage. In fact, you can mark us all down in favor of traditional marriage! Many of us are SO in favor of “traditional” marriage, we’ve honored those “traditions” in our own same-sex weddings and marriages. Three cheers for tradition! Lets go ahead and drop the “false choice” premise … there is no “either/or” proposition here. 5) If you truly believe that dismissive name-calling is friendly and civil, perhaps the labels you sling are better suited to yourself.

          2. Logike says:

            Luigi: (1) Jesus was the Son of GOD, so I’d say his situation was pretty unique! But how does bringing up Jesus’ family defeat my point? Of course adoption is a necessary evil for two reasons (a) an unwanted child without parents would generally fare WORSE than a child with parents, and (b) children raised by their married biological mother and father generally fare better than adopted children. So we encourage the adoption of unwanted children for reason (a), but we DON’T encourage adoption as some alternative family structure “just as good” as the traditional family structure, because it is NOT for reason (b). Therefore, it is bad policy-making to try to change this societal norm already in place. (2) My mentioning incestual relationships is not a red-herring at all. Logically, your definition of “marriage” included them, which is precisely why I rejected it. As we can see, you cannot escape the question “What is marriage”? EVERYTHING RIDES ON IT. (3) First, how do communities “pay the price” for not calling a homsexual relationship a “marriage”? Do you have any evidence for this? And second, I don’t understand this reasoning anyway. Even if communities DID pay some price, that is not a reason for “calling” something it is not. There might be some bad consequence as a result of refusing to call a cow a “chicken,” but calling a cow a “chicken” does not stop a cow from being a cow. You can call a cow anything you want. Words won’t change WHAT IT IS. So this is a nonsensical proposal right from the start. Finding some other means to mitigate the evil in the situation would be better than confusing everyone with a nonsensical scramble of language. Just think of the consequence that would have for how the Law is written? (4) I don’t know what your point here is at all. (5) Stop being such a crybaby. The sand in your crotch only encourages me to ruffle your feathers more. Lol!

          3. Luigi says:

            Logike, please allow me to give you the news: (1) adoption is NOT an evil, it is a blessing. To everyone involved. (2) my case is that GENDER ought not determine who can and cannot marry. And you can tell the difference between GENDER and KINSHIP and PLURALITY quite easily, just by the spelling of the words! My definition of marriage is no different from the definition that California’s supreme court confirms …and that definition excludes incest and polygamy. Please look elsewhere if you are looking for an incest or polygamy advocate.And I’ve already given you the proper definition of marriage, which you choose to ignore (3) AS YOU YOURSELF STATED, those who do not have an option to marry suffer shorter relationships, more domestic violence, greater health consequences, and more substance abuse. How are any of the outcome … the result of allowing marriage only for opposite-sex couples … GOOD for society? (4) You don’t understand my point? Let me spell it out then. CONSERVATIVES ARE ADVANCING A LIE WHEN THEY PROPOSE THAT YOU CAN BE FOR TRADITIONAL MARRIAGE, OR MARRIAGE EQUALITY, BUT NOT BOTH. You can, in fact, be FOR both! Do you get my point now, or do you choose to remain IGNORE-ant? (5) CRY-BABY? LOL! I’m simply pointing out to your peers your repeated failures to engage in civil discourse. I have neither sand-in-crotch, nor feathers. But I do have a civil tongue – something you obviously lack.

          4. Logike says:

            Luigi: (1) Of course adoption is a blessing for both the child adopted and the parents involved who cannot have children. I’ve already told you what I mean by “necessary evil”: having parents is better than having not at all, but adotption is not the best family structure. I don’t need to explain this further. (2) You’re dead wrong. I’ve read the ruling of the 9th Circuit Court of Appeals already, and the court did NOT give a definition of marriage at all. It explicitly left that part, the most important part of all, UNDEFINED. Instead, the court ruled proposition 8 “unconsitutional” on the grounds of violating the 14th Amendment, but by doing so, the court in effect gave gay couples a “right” to something they-know-not-what, which is incoherent. How can you have a right to something if it is not even clear what it is that you have a right to? Now we have incoherent words inside the Law, which is just great. The only thing coming close to an attempted definition by the court is this: The court said, “marriage” is “the name that society gives to the relationship that matters most between two adults.” –Two adults? Is “two adults” enough to make a marriage? The court in effect just brilliantly included “best friends” and incestuous relationships under the term “marriage” too. Is that rational to you? And as for you, you still have not provided a coherent definition of marriage that does not suffer the same problem as the court’s sorry attempt at a definition. Let me help you: a definition starts with “A marriage is…….”<–Then you fill in the blank. If sex should not determine a marriage, then what does? Try again. (3) I never said that. I explicitly remember saying this: "though there is evidence that heterosexual marriage helps heterosexual couples (primarily for biological reasons grounded in sexual complimentarity), there is NO evidence that gay "marriage" helps gay couples. In fact, there is enormous evidence that pursuing the gay lifyestyle significantly harms homosexuals since the disorder of sodomy is proven to be unhealthy and the homosexual condition coupled with significantly higher rates than the heterosexaul condition of suicide, promiscuity, illegal drug use, HIV and STD's, depression, alcoholism, partner abuse, and pedophilia." Then I gave multiple resources showing just this. (4) That's not a "lie." To DENY what conservatives say entails a logical contradiction! Hello! You cannot coherently support one thing that is two things. That makes no sense. Marriage either is or is not what Traditionalists say it is–not both. THINK, LUGI. Traditionalists are either right or wrong about what marriage is in fact. They cannot be both right and wrong. Of course you may instist the word "marriage" has two distinct linguistic meanings, but now you're begging the question whether that word designates anything in the first place distinct from what traditionalists have always said marriage is in fact. I don't ignore your "point" here. The problem is that your "point" is an explicit logical contradiction!! You have TONS of sand in your crotch, by the way. Do you ever wash?

          5. Luigi says:

            Logike, I’ll restate this a little more explicitly for you. I believe it is a good thing when a man and woman fall in love and decide to make a lifelong commitment to one another. I believe it is a good thing for them to develop the competence, the means and the desire to raise a family … biological or otherwise. I believe that it is best for the adults, their children, and the community when these steps toward forming a family are followed in this order. This is “traditional marriage” – correct? I AM FOR IT! And I am also FOR allowing same-sex couples the same opportunity to form these bonds, make these commitments, and raise families – with the same rights and responsibilities that the law confers to any married couple. There is no contradiction, and frankly no difficulty in being FOR both. (Where I live, we have the same legal recognition for “same sex” marriages as we have for “traditional” marriages. We didn’t have to abolish “traditional” marriage to accomplish this task.) Or do you define “traditional marriage” as “the right to impose Logike’s beliefs on others” … in that case I would be against it.

          6. Logike says:

            Luigi: Good for you. You can encourage your gay friends to do these things all you want. But why should I, and the rest of the society, be for them? Again, we are talking about a large-scale public sanction of gay pseudo-”marriage, not the protection of some “private right.” After all, I am one among many members of the public, and I don’t believe it is a good thing when two men or two women fall in love with one another. And I don’t believe it is best for the adults involved, particularly children. And I don’t believe it has any benefit for the community. So give me a single reason why I should be for whatever it is you are proposing. You are not even clear what it is you want from me. Worst of all, you still haven’t given me your own coherent alternative definition of marriage. Stop trying to evade the real issue at stake: What is marriage? Again, let me help you out. A definition begins with “A marriage is……”<——then you fill in blank with your answer here.———————You can't be serious. Yes, there IS a contradiction. Proof: (1) Marriage is the loving union between man and woman. (2) If marriage is the loving union between man and woman, then marriage is not the loving union between man and man, woman and woman. (3) Suppose marriage is the loving union between man and man. (4) Therefore, marriage is not the loving union between man and woman (from 2, 3). (5) Contradiction, 1 and 4.

          7. Logike says:

            Luigi: For the last time, what is marriage? You cannot hope to make a case for gay “marriage” without knowing what it was that you were talking about in the first place. Is this really so difficult to understand? It’s like going around arguing you have a right to “globlanger” when no one knows what a “globlanger” is.

          8. Daniel says:

            Logike, if you seek a definition of marriage you can start with the root word: marry. To marry = to combine suitably or agreeably; to blend; to unite inseparably. A novel might be the perfect marriage of style and content. Great BBQ sauce is the perfect marriage of sweet & savory. the word “marriage” describes the union, NOT the entities being united. (Its not complicated.)

          9. Logike says:

            Lugi: Oh my…..You really fell off the deep end. If the kinds of entities being united were irrelevant to question of “what is marriage,” then everything put together is marriage. By your own admission, BBQ sauce is a marriage. So we should grant the combined sweet and savory taste of BBQ the status of a legally recognized union? A peanut-butter and jelly sandwhich is also a marriage. So is a bourbon and coke a marriage. So is an incestuous “union” of father and daugher a marriage. So is the sexual “union” of a man and a beast a marriage. You’re a genius.

          10. Luigi says:

            Logike, I thought you were a “word” guy … but it looks like you need to look up the definition of “definition”. Its about understanding what a word means. To marry = to combine suitably or agreeably; to blend; to unite inseparably. That is the definition. So lets have the conversation about who may and who may not undertake the action, and drop the BS that these prohibitions are inherent to the meaning of the word.

          11. Logike says:

            Lugi: No, we’re not talking about the action indicated by the ordinary lexicographical definiton of the verb “to marry.” We are talking about the socio-biological reality indicated by noun “marriage.” What is marriage and the reality that thing is based upon? You sill haven’t given an answer that even comes close to being coherent because you think BBQ Sauce is a marriage. Are you seriously this thick-headed? That BBQ sauce and bestial sex is a marriage according to your definition is a sufficient reason to reject your definition. Anybody home up there?…because no one seems to be behind the wheel.

          12. Logike says:

            But Lugi, when someone says “I have a right to marriage” they are using “marriage” as a noun, not as a verb. If there is nothing this noun designates in reality, then there is no such thing as marriage at all, much less a “right” to this thing. So anytime someone says “I have a right to marriage,” they are saying something false. Is that your position, now? That there is no such thing as marriage in the first place? Ok with me. Then stop insisting people have a right to this thing that doesn’t exist. You keep shooting yourself in the foot.

          13. Logike says:

            Lugi: And another thing….Homosexuals already have the right “to marry,” if “to marry” means nothing more than “the action of joining two things together,” just like you have the right to “marry” the sweet and savory tastes found in BBQ Sauce. So homosexuals already have the right to have their own wedding ceremonies and to promises sweet-sounding words to each other. But again, we are searching for a public reason the State should be legally sanctioning their relationship as a “marriage,” and recognizing that relationship AS SUCH. I see no reason at all why we should do this….I’m till waiting for a logically coherent answer and defense of your position. Do you even have a position? I mean, you think we traditionalists have an “incorrect” definition of marriage, but you haven’t the slightest clue what the “correct” definition is. Genius! You haven’t even begun to make a lick of sense or defend anything.

          14. Daniel says:

            Logike, you finally said something that makes sense: homosexuals already have the right to marry! This is just what the 9th Circuit court said, when they declared the California ban on same-sex marriage unconstitutional. Its a shame Luigi doesn’t have anything to add to this conversation.

          15. Logike says:

            Daniel: Are you not listening? If homosexuals “have the right to marry”, then according to your unqualified verb, so does incestuous father and daughter, polygamous persons, man and beast, have the right “to marry.” Your ridiculous definition of “to marry” is SO inclusive, it doesn’t exclude anything at all. This is enough to reject your alleged “definition.”

          16. Logike says:

            Daniel: I’m sorry, you’re equivocating again. You suddenly switched from talking about the unqualified verb “to marry” to the socio-biological noun “marriage” in your mention of the 9th Circuit Court. So again, WHAT is marriage? The court doesn’t even know. It did not offer any alternative parameters for marriage. It just declared Prop 8 unconstitutional on the grounds of violating the Equal Protection Clause of the 14th Amendment without knowing WHAT it was that was allegedly being denied to homosexuals. So here is your obvious problem. On the one hand, if the court rules that there is a “right” to a certain thing, it must know what that thing IS, otherwise the Court isn’t making any sense. On the other hand, if the court accepted that the thing called “marriage” is the union between a man and woman, there would be no debate in the first place. The judges would simply state that, just like anyone else, homosexuals have a right to marry — to form that time-honored union between themselves and a member of the opposite sex. So for the last time, WHAT is marriage? If you leftists cannot say what marriage is, how can you be so sure about what it isn’t? If you cannot offer a definition you are certain is RIGHT, how can they be so confident that the right definition is WRONG? The Court’s ruling made no logical sense at all; and neither do you.

          17. Logike says:

            Daniel: I’m sorry, but you’re equivocating again. You suddenly switched from talking about the unqualified verb “to marry,” which is so broad to include everything under the sun including BBQ Sauce and peanut-butter & jelly sandwiches, to the socio-biological noun “marriage,” which needs to be defined to exclude dysfunctional relationships like incest and bestiality–(unless you think those things are marriages too)? So again, WHAT is marriage? The court doesn’t even know. It did not offer any alternative parameters for marriage. It just declared Prop 8 unconstitutional on the grounds of violating the Equal Protection Clause of the 14th Amendment without knowing WHAT it was that was allegedly being denied to homosexuals. So here is your obvious dilemma: On the one hand, if the Court rules that there is a “right” to a certain thing, it must know what that thing IS, otherwise the Court isn’t making any sense. On the other hand, if the Court accepted that the thing called “marriage” is the union between a man and woman, there would be no debate in the first place. The judges would simply state that, just like anyone else, homosexuals have a right to marry — to form that time-honored union between themselves and a member of the opposite sex. So for the last time, WHAT is marriage? If you leftists cannot say what marriage is, how can you be so sure about what it isn’t? If you cannot offer a definition you are certain is RIGHT, how can they be so confident that the right definition is WRONG? The Court’s ruling made no logical sense at all; and neither do you.

          18. Logike says:

            Daniel: “homosexuals already have the right to marry!”———No, stop equivocating! I am talking about the PRIVATE freedoms of people to have “wedding” ceremonies, to sodomize eachother in the privacy of their own bedrooms, and to make promises to each other however heart-felt and sincere. But since everyone already has these freedoms, what could possibly be your grievance, genius? Since everyone already DOES have a right to these things, what is your objection? For the 100th time, the issue is not whether homosexuals have a right to these things, because they already do! The question is, “Are the sexual relationshps between two men or two women MARRIAGES?” The answer is “NO” because marriage is the non-incestuous union between a man and woman for the procreation and rearing of children. And since everyone has a right to this thing we call “marriage,” including homosexuals and heterosexuals alike, every assertion of yours to the effect that traditionalists “deny homosexuals a right to marriage” is FALSE. You don’t have a case precisely because you don’t have a clear defnition of what this SOCIAL INSTUTITION we call “MARRIAGE” IS. Wake up and smell the coffee!

          19. Logike says:

            Lugi: Contending that marriage is two different things is explicitly contradictory. It’s like saying a Dog is both Canine and Feline. One of these definitions must be wrong. They cannot both be right. Your side’s argument never even gets off the ground because you equivocate on word-meaning every single time. It’s similar to arguing that (1) Everyone has a right to own a Bank (financial institution). (2) Traditionalists deny gays the right to own a Bank (the sand or dirt next to a river, like a river-bank). (3) Therefore, traditionalists are denying gays a right to something they reserve for themselves, which is discriminatory. —-This argument is logically INVALID becuase it equivocates on the word “Bank.” (3) is FALSE. You need to AT LEAST start by offering a coherent definition of this thing you call “marriage” whatever it is, which you STILL haven’t done!

          20. Daniel says:

            Logike, I don’t think Luigi is saying that “marriage is two different things”. A dog and a cat are two different things, but they ARE both mammals. Same with marriage … its not necessary the the united couples be identical in order to legally recognize them both as marriages.

          21. Logike says:

            Daniel: What is marriage? Enough with the evasive nonsense.

          22. Daniel says:

            Logike, you keep asking this question, and you’re inexplicable stubborn in your refusal to recognize that there are two different questions on the table. For you to keep asking “what is marriage” is infantile – that definition has been provided to you many times. The word MARRIAGE designates any close or intimate association or union. That is what the WORD means. The WORD “marriage” sometimes applies to inanimate objects, sometimes applies to concepts, and sometimes applies to the state-sanctioned SOCIAL INSTITUTION of people united by close & intimate association. In the last case, MARRIAGE also infers the 1000+ rights and responsibilities of that close, intimate association. Consider an analogy – voting. While it may have been the practice, the DEFINITION of “voting” was never “a formal expression of opinion or choice, either positive or negative, made by a white, male land owner”. Voting is the formal expression of opinion or choice – regardless of who is granted or denied that right. Another analogy – lunch. Its a mid-day meal, regardless of who is eating it. Same thing with marriage. Marriage is the formal commitment that a couple makes to – devote their lives to one another, – take care of one another, – care for any children that become part of their household. For most couples, there is also a commitment of fidelity. When couples formalizes this commitment to one another, the law imparts on them about a thousand benefits & protections, so one might say that the legal definition of marriage also includes these benefits & protections. BY ALL MEANS it is reasonable to consider who ought and oughtn’t have the opportunity to enjoy the legal protections that society extends to those who may such a commitment to one another. But it does not require and re-definition of the word “marriage”. The SEPARATE QUESTION of who may and who may not enjoy the legal recognition of their close & intimate association IS NOT inherent to the definition of the word “marriage”.

          23. Logike says:

            Daniel: Once again, I reject your definition of marriage because it is too broad: If marriage is nothing more than a formal commitment between couples, then best-friends relationships like “blood-brothers” are marriages. So you’re stuck in a logical dilemma: Either a mutual commitment is enough to make a marriage, in which case, committed friendships are marriages, or committed friendships are not marriages, in which case formal commitment is not enough to make a marriage. So which is it, genius? You’ve eliminated sex and children entirely from the picture. So I seriously don’t know what you mean by “marriage” at all.

          24. Logike says:

            Daniel: “The SEPARATE QUESTION of who may and who may not enjoy the legal recognition of their close & intimate association”————————————————————So mere friendships are marriages? Since when was the government in the business of giving its stamp of approval to all your personal friendships and forcing everyone else to do likewise?

          25. Logike says:

            Daniel: “But it does not require and re-definition of the word “marriage”.———Yes it does require a re-definition of the word because you keep talking about “legally recognizing intimate associations of persons” OTHER than those male and female associations biologically aimed at the procreation and rearing of children. We’ve already seen marriage cannot be two things at once without contradiction, and your own definition of it is false. So what is marriage again? You fail to realize not all intimate associations are marriages. Friendships are not marriages. Incestuous relationships are not marriages. Adulterous relationships are not marriages either. Try again.

          26. Logike says:

            Daniel: “Voting is the formal expression of opinion or choice – regardless of who is granted or denied that right, like the right to marry.”———-This is a disanalogy. Everyone may have a right to vote for whomever they want, but not everyone has a right to marry whomever they want. The Marriage Laws already rule against incest, polygamy, and bestiality alike. Sorry.

          27. Logike says:

            Daniel: “‘marriage’ applies to the state-sanctioned SOCIAL INSTITUTION.” ——–Marriage is indeed a SOCIAL INSTITUTION. Marriage is the non-incestuous union between a man and a woman for the procreation and rearing of children. And everyone has a right to this thing, including homosexuals and heterosexuals alike. So every assertion to the effect that traditionalists “deny homosexuals a right to marriage” is FALSE. Listen closely: since you equivocate on the words “marriage” and “to marry” every single time you appeal to a person’s “rights,” your inferences will always be logically INVALID. Your side will always LOSE the argument precisely because you lack a coherent definition of marriage. Period.

          28. Logike says:

            Daniel says, “I don’t think Luigi is saying that ‘marriage is two different things.’” –He isn’t? Ok, then I guess he agrees marriage is the non-incestuous loving union of a man and woman for the procreation and rearing of children. Or, he means marriage is something else, which humorously enough, no one knows what that is, including you, Luigi, or the Courts.

          29. Logike says:

            Daniel: So what IS “necessary”?

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