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Thursday, March 28, 2013

Marriage Equality, The Same as any Equality?

I find this debate over same sex marriage incredible.  That is, that at this point in America's existence - and after all the social struggles we've been through - that we are even having this debate.  Just step back for one second from emotions and the flood of positioned journalism, and you will quickly see the problems with the existence of even having this debate.

If, as a logical foundation, you take each individual person and view them as their own personal and legal entity - which I believe is safe to say we as a country do - then each individual is one person, one human being, one legal entity.  Each one with rights, civil liberties, goals, dreams, aspirations, etc.  With this concept of a person in mind, we should theoretically all be treated in a way that allows us as individuals to interact, communicate, and enter into contracts and such with each other equally, and where one or another person should not be disallowed entrance into any type of interpersonal or legal engagement for whatever reason.

Yes, our laws create limitations to equality of entry on some issues.  But these issues are mostly based on economic grounds both stemming from a capitalist based social system and the creation, usage, and control of money (which is an inherent exclusionary barrier for those without it).  This barrier is however exclusionary in many ways both for haves and have-nots - especially if you look at money in a "value neutral" way.  Everyone can't apply for social services, everyone isn't taxed the same, everyone doesn't use state services like roads and police the same, just as those with money can buy, go places, and do things those without can not.  But capitalism and economics is a different story.  The point of this debate on marriage inequality is along the lines of race, sex, and creed - things the constitution and laws of the United States says we can not discriminate against.

I can not tell you that you can not do something simply because you are a woman, or black, or Asian, or whatever (though unfortunately people still try).  This issue with the marriage equality debate, and what makes it so absurd, is that to be against this type of equality is to try to say that you as a woman can not pick who you want to marry (or get benefits within a marriage) based solely on the sex of that person you marry.  Those against the allowance of marriage equality says that if I as a man marry a woman, not only am I allowed to do this, but I am entitled to certain things, certain legal benefits.  However, they then say that if I marry a man, then I am not entitled to these same benefits.

That inherently states through its inherent and unavoidable action and outcome that men and woman are NOT equal, or at least not legally of equal standing in United States based SOLELY on their gender and relationship to other genders.  The fundamental problem though is that if this were correct, does it not directly juxtapose a United States constitution that states that "all men [and presumably women] are created equal"?  By telling me that I can or can not marry another person based on no other reason than their gender, you are telling me that the sexes are not equal.  But while many people, including myself, may feel that a gross injustice of inequality exists between men and women in this country, especially in terms of outcomes, historical standing, current day power relationships, is it a fundamental and core value of the the United States that men and woman are NOT equal in one-to-one human terms?  Are not capable of entering freely into social and legal engagements with one an other?  Almost everything/one (including morals, ethics, and everything in between) tells us that this unequal stance is not only the wrong way for our country to proceed, but all together wrong on a basic human level of existence.

Marriage Equality is not a gay or straight issue, a sexual preference or what someone's kids call them issue, and it is most definitely not a "states rights" issue, it is a gender equity issue.  That every human being - no matter their gender - is of equal personal and legal standing to the next person and is legally allowed to interact with everyone in the exact same manner.  Of course, this gets tricky though in some senses.  Because I have NO idea what we're going to do moving forward.  God help us once corporations start trying to get married!!

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