Monday, February 14, 2005

A Political Message on Valentine's Day

Geoff Pullum describes his weekend:
…I just got back from the wedding of a dear friend in Oakland, California, on Sunday afternoon. To be more precise, the legal wedding had actually taken place in a rush a year ago without a chance for friends and family to be gathered together, so strictly what I just got back from was a renewal of wedding vows already taken, combined with a full-scale reception. It was a warm and affectionate occasion. The room … was full of happiness; teardrops moistened many a smile. It was a very conventional ceremony and reception, from the largely Episcopalian wording of the preliminaries and vows right down to the staged cutting of a huge cake followed by the married couple feeding each other chunks of it (in what I assume is a symbolization of the way married couples commit to taking care of each other's bodily needs). I don't think anything much would have raised an eyebrow if someone from rural Kansas had stopped by to witness the event — except that the two people renewing their wedding vows to each other were both women.
Read the whole thing. In reading it myself, I was reminded of Will Wilkinson’s comment last year, upon viewing photos of joyous same-sex couples who had just gotten married in San Francisco: “Look at the love and the joy in these people's faces. Now try to tell me -- try to tell yourself -- that this is wrong, that these people are wrong. If you can do it, then there's just something wrong with you: you're morally broken.” As Will clarified later, in response to a commenter who accused him of emotivism, “The good in general is determined independently of passing intuition or sentiment. But a good person, who has undergone good moral education, and is not afflicted with an ideology that interferes with the moral sense, will tend to experience moral sentiments that track the good.”


Anonymous said...

There's a good parody of the anti gai marriage called "I believe in a traditional family." here

Loquitur Veritatem said...

The "wrong" bit is that government is involved, one way or the other. When I contract for services, I don't submit the contract to a government entity for approval. If the other party breaches the contract I may, if I wish, seek redress in a government-sponsored court. But government, in that case, is merely acting (or should be acting) as a neutral referee in a contract dispute. Actually, because of the demonstrated inability of government-sponsored courts to make sensible decisions, it would be better to take marriage out of government's hands by stipulating that marital disputes must be resolved by the parties themselves, through mediation, or through binding arbitration -- as the parties wish -- but not through the courts.

Anonymous said...

Caliban said...

The "wrong" bit is that government is involved, one way or the other. Completely agree.

"Privatizing marriage" (such as here) looks like the best route.

I never understood why the government had to be involved in what most people consider to be a most private of affairs.

Glen Whitman said...

I agree, marriage should be privatized. And who knows, that might even be a viable compromise in the current charged political climate. But if the state continues to be involved in the marriage business, then I think justice demands that the privilege be extended to sex-sex couples.