The buggers are legal now, what more are they after?

Richard Goode's picture
Submitted by Richard Goode on Fri, 2012-10-19 05:50

"Legalising" gay "marriage" is not the solution to the problem of "marriage inequality".

The solution to the problem is for the government to get out of the business of issuing "marriage licences" to opposite-sex couples, not for it to get into the business of issuing "marriage licences" to same-sex couples.

Why should anyone require a licence from the government to get married, anyway? Libertarians should be concerned with abolishing such governmental intrusions, not clamouring for "intrusion equality", or insisting that the State "should recognise everybody’s right to be equally miserable."

The solution has a precedent in the abolition of titular Knighthood and Damehood honours by Helen Clark. (They were restored by John Key in 2009.) Wikipedia says

In April 2000 the new Labour Prime Minister Helen Clark announced that knighthoods and damehoods were abolished, and the order's statutes were amended accordingly. Between 2000 and 2009, the two highest awards were called Principal Companion (PCNZM) and Distinguished Companion (DCNZM), and recipients did not receive the title "Sir" or "Dame". Their award was recognised solely by the use of post-nominal letters, as for the lower levels of the order.

The government simply needs to set a date after which marriage licences will no longer be issued. Civil unions will be the only option available for gay and non-gay couples wanting governmental endorsement of their love lives and living arrangements. Existing marriage licences issued by the government, and those issued by other governments, would continue to be recognised, but the government would cease to issue new marriage licences after the set date.

After much time spent considering my co-bloggers' excellent arguments both for (Tim) and against (Reed) Louisa Wall's "marriage equality" bill, I'm off the fence now and picking the splinters out of my scrotum. I'm for marriage equality and against Wall's bill.

[Cross-posted from Eternal Vigilance.]


( categories: )

A poem

Rosie's picture

There once was a man who said, "God
Must think it exceedingly odd
That Herr Moeller's posts
Each continue to boast
That man qua man marriage is just 'mod'"

Dear Sir, Your astonishment's odd!
I am the Creator of 'mod'
And that's why Herr Moeller's
A closet Holy Roller!
Just saying. Yours faithfully, God.

Michael

Doug Bandler's picture

Christians will argue that the OT was softened by the NT; that in essence there was a new Covenant. They will make distinctions from OT Mosaic Judaism. They have a well developed view of the marital family. The father is the head of the household the way god is the head of the heavens and Jesus was the head of his flock (ie humanity). I think holding them to a literalist approach to the OT won't work. I have seen sophisticated counters to that. Larry Auster has given many. I'll do a search at his blog for how he and the Traditionalists define marriage and its relationship to Christianity.

Reed

Michael Moeller's picture

Why does Christianity define marriage as "between a man and a woman", even though there is polygamy in the OT?

Why is Civil Union legislation "a government endorsement of an immoral acts"?

Michael

Michael

reed's picture

What questions do you want answered?

For the best result state your questions precisely.

Reed

Michael Moeller's picture

You wrote: "No, I'm not getting it!!!!"

Sadly, this is true.

Look, Reed, I'll make you a deal. I'll answer your questions if you answer my questions posed on Christianity and marriage. If I am going to waste more time trying to explain this to you, I at least want something to show for it.

Michael

Michael

reed's picture

The more I pay attention the less clear your arguments become.

[The individual rights at issue are] freedom of association involving property rights and custody rights
What does that even mean?

Can you give some examples of individual rights violations that might stem from the absence of gay marriage legislation?

Now you're getting it!! The industry is not the legal framework, but the freedom to contract, i.e. contract law.
No, I'm not getting it!!!! Your "reasoning" make no sense to me.
A yes or no answer would have been reasonable.

Reed

Michael Moeller's picture

Since Richard has thus far refused to rectify marriage "between a man and a woman" being inconsistent with the Bible, do you care to clarify it? And the penalty for gay marriage and polygamy?

Michael

Pay Attention

Michael Moeller's picture

Reed wrote:

"Perhaps I haven't been paying attention but you haven't identified that an individual right is at issue."

How many times have I stated freedom of association involving property rights and custody rights? 100, maybe?

Reed wrote:

"Do individuals have a right to enter into lending contracts?
Do individuals have a right to enter into building contracts?"

Now you're getting it!! The industry is not the legal framework, but the freedom to contract, i.e. contract law.

Michael

Be straight

reed's picture

Michael
When it comes to the law the essential is whether an individual right is at issue, not a particular commercial industry.
Perhaps I haven't been paying attention but you haven't identified that an individual right is at issue.

Unless you mean that individuals have a right to enter into marriage contracts.

If so...

Do individuals have a right to enter into lending contracts?
Do individuals have a right to enter into building contracts?
... etc...

...and wouldn't that justify (by your reasoning) legislation for all areas of life?

Doug

Michael Moeller's picture

This conception fails to take account of obvious facts -- i.e. people do not have to be married to have children, or even have a family (eg. "single-parent family"). It also ignores adoption.

Michael

One man One woman

Doug Bandler's picture

Here is the way one Conservative I have read describes marriage and why it must be between a man and a woman. The argument goes something like this:

The family is the most important unit in society. It provides the foundation for which society depends on its continuance. Mothers just don't give birth to children, they give birth to the future. The family provides for the continuation of culture, it provides a link from the past to the future. Thus marriage is NOT about the happiness of both parties but about providing a stable unit for the continuation of society. Thus marriage must center around family and children. Homosexuals do not do this as they can not bring forth children and they can not provide both the masculine and the feminine guidance that a true family can. Marriage must therefor ONLY be allowed to exist for heterosexual couples.

There are many flaws in this argument but it is pretty standard for Paleo Conservatives. Legally, this view completely rejects the Classical Liberal view of rights. But then again these are Conservatives not liberals. I think this is the way most true Christians would view marriage. But once again we come back to the realization that Christianity is not compatible with rights. Locke shot himself in the foot by basing his system on a Spencer Tracy version of god.

Richard

Michael Moeller's picture

You wrote:

"Yes. That it is between a man and a woman is a necessary condition for the proper application of the word."

Why is "between a man and a woman" a "necessary condition" for the proper application of the word?

Indeed, this is not even true by Christian standards. In the Bible, we have men (and arguably women) marrying more than one person, i.e. marriage not only "between a man and a woman".

Speaking of which, I asked you a simple question about this aspect of Christianity, and you ignored it. Why was polygamy permissible in the Bible, and now Christians ignore that aspect of the Bible in favor of "between a man and a woman"?

Richard wrote:

"Have you actually read my post?! I agree with Reed. Reed doesn't support marriage legislation. Neither do I. The solution to the problem of "marriage inequality" is for the government to get out of the business of issuing "marriage licences".

Richard, you wrote in your post:

"Civil unions will be the only option available for gay and non-gay couples wanting governmental endorsement of their love lives and living arrangements."

If "between a man and a woman" is not a "necessary condition" of marriage, then all you have described is marriage by another name, and given it state recognition. Furthermore, "civil unions" "between a man and a woman" would satisfy your "necessary condition" to qualify as marriage, and would be given recognition by the state. All you would have done, in the case of "between a man and a woman", is given state recognition to marriage and simply renamed it to "civil union".

Michael

Thanks...

Marcus's picture

...for correcting that point.

Now back to your scheduled argument.

Marcus

Michael Moeller's picture

I'll change the example to pre-Greek lexicographers, or Church lexicographers that claimed the earth was the orbital center of the universe.

Michael

Actually Michael...

Marcus's picture

"Indeed, the Church "lexicographers" defined the earth as flat, and that was the common usage by the Church. So much for that argument, and Richard's epistemology."

Actually that is a common myth.

The Christian Church never propagated the idea that the earth was flat. Like the Greeks they believed it to be spherical.

Richard

Michael Moeller's picture

Your epistemology is sheer bollocks. You wrote:

"Lexicographers report. A reportive definition purports to describe the actual pattern of (approved) use of a term. Dictionary definitions are of this type. A dictionary definition is an attempt to describe the nature of the conventions that govern the (proper) use of a term. Dictionary definitions are, or ought to be, anchored in the facts of reality (the facts of use).
[...]
What is the definition of marriage? Well, how is the term 'marriage' used? Same question. Same answer."

This falls apart in two seconds. Richard assumes that a "lexicographer's" usage or definition will be "anchored in the facts of reality", but we know this to be false. He even refutes himself when he says it "ought to be" "anchored in the facts of reality", meaning there is an objective standard by which we measure definitions, NOT whatever the dictionary says it is. Lexicographers ought to correctly define a concept according to the facts of reality, but that does not mean they will.

Indeed, the Church "lexicographers" defined the earth as flat, and that was the common usage by the Church. So much for that argument, and Richard's epistemology.

Now, instead of asserting that Rand is wrong, let's see Richard prove it using examples, as I just did with his "epistemology".

Michael

Richard

Jules Troy's picture

Seven or eight wives sounds like hell to me!

 

Hahaha can't argue with that!!

Michael

Richard Goode's picture

You don't have a definition of marriage, but you insist that it includes "between a man and a woman"?

Yes. That it is between a man and a woman is a necessary condition for the proper application of the word.

Because that's what Christianity says?

No, because the word 'marriage' is not used to refer to same-sex unions. (Yes, you read that right.)

Yet, it appears that you and Reed cannot even agree on what Christianity says!!

Smiling

Reed doesn't even think your right to marry should be covered by law, yet you want to exclude some people from the law because their marriage does not conform to Christianity.

Have you actually read my post?! I agree with Reed. Reed doesn't support marriage legislation. Neither do I. The solution to the problem of "marriage inequality" is for the government to get out of the business of issuing "marriage licences".

Well, what do you make of all the people in the Bible that were polygamous? Didn't David have something like seven or eight wives? It's been a long, long time since I read the Bible, but I don't remember him repenting, or God saying he would end up in hell for it.

Seven or eight wives sounds like hell to me.

Michael

Richard Goode's picture

The goal of definitions is to differentiate the concept from other concepts of the same type by identifying their essential and distinguishing characteristic.

What a load of old cobblers. Where on earth did you get that? Oh, wait.

The purpose of a definition is to distinguish a concept from all other concepts and thus to keep its units differentiated from all other existents.

Well, there you have it! Rand's ITOE is one of the biggest load of old cobblers known to man qua man.

A definition is a statement that identifies the nature of the units subsumed under a concept.

Rand defines 'definition'. LOL! Isn't that circular?! Actually, no. Rand stipulates. A stipulative definition tells us of an author’s intent. It may be that the author is putting forward a proposal for revision of our use of the term. Or it may be that the author is telling us how she will use the term, a use which may or may not conform to the broader pattern of use. (Rand's uses seldom do.)

It is often said that definitions state the meaning of words. This is true, but it is not exact. A word is merely a visual-auditory symbol used to represent a concept; a word has no meaning other than that of the concept it symbolizes, and the meaning of a concept consists of its units. It is not words, but concepts that man defines—by specifying their referents.

Lexicographers report. A reportive definition purports to describe the actual pattern of (approved) use of a term. Dictionary definitions are of this type. A dictionary definition is an attempt to describe the nature of the conventions that govern the (proper) use of a term. Dictionary definitions are, or ought to be, anchored in the facts of reality (the facts of use).

Trying to provide the necessary and sufficient conditions for the proper application of a word (as Rand/roids are wont to do) can be fun, but it can also be frustrating, for reasons given by the likes of Wittgenstein and Lewis, two of the 20th century's greatest philosophers whom Rand (presumably) never read, to her detriment and to the detriment of many.

Back to the realities.

What is the definition of marriage? Well, how is the term 'marriage' used? Same question. Same answer.

Goode

Michael Moeller's picture

You don't have a definition of marriage, but you insist that it includes "between a man and a woman"? Because that's what Christianity says?

Yet, it appears that you and Reed cannot even agree on what Christianity says!! Reed doesn't even think your right to marry should be covered by law, yet you want to exclude some people from the law because their marriage does not conform to Christianity.

In any event, you are describing it as a sin.

Well, what do you make of all the people in the Bible that were polygamous? Didn't David have something like seven or eight wives? It's been a long, long time since I read the Bible, but I don't remember him repenting, or God saying he would end up in hell for it.

So what makes you describe polygamy as a sin?

Michael

Reed

Michael Moeller's picture

You suspect wrong. And you are not paying attention.

When it comes to the law the essential is whether an individual right is at issue, not a particular commercial industry. Why you insist on framing it that way I have no idea. You're way off in the weeds, just like I said.

Say it is a property dispute, is it real estate, personal property, or intellectual property? The delimitations follow from any subdivisions in the individual right. Why you keep framing it by commercial industry I have no idea.

Why are you?

Michael

Michael

reed's picture

Michael
I couldn't figure out what your response implied about my questions.

Do you agree or disagree with the following statements?

1) Lending should have its own legal framework.
2) Building should have its own legal framework.
3) Food production should have its own legal framework.
4) Insurance should have its own legal framework.
5) Medicine should have its own legal framework.
6) Renting houses should have its own legal framework.
7) Retail should have its own legal framework.
8 ) Employment should have its own legal framework.
9) There isn't any area of life that shouldn't have the "ground rules" legislated?

I suspect you are for every area of life having its own legal framework.

Richard

reed's picture

I'll explain my view later. Perhaps not in this thread.

Michael

Richard Goode's picture

No refining of your definition of marriage?

I don't have a definition of marriage.

I think a man and a woman with only a business partnership would be shocked to find out they are also married.

I think if they live in New Zealand it wouldn't come as a surprise.

In any event, I was NOT asking for a dissertion on your views. I just wanted the official Church position.

Who the hell do you think I am?! The Pope??!

Is it a sin?

Thou shalt not covet thy neighbour's ass.

If so, do they go to hell?

To go to hell, click here.

Richard

Michael Moeller's picture

No refining of your definition of marriage? I think a man and a woman with only a business partnership would be shocked to find out they are also married.

In any event, I was NOT asking for a dissertion on your views. I just wanted the official Church position. Is it a sin? If so, do they go to hell?

Michael

Michael

Richard Goode's picture

What is the Christian punishment for gay marriage or polygamy?

Serious question? I'll give you my serious answer, but don't take it as Gospel.

There are two basic types of "Christian punishment". Temporal punishent (in this world) and eternal punishment (in the next).

Eternal punishment is always the same, regardless of the sin committed, viz., death.

Temporal punishment ... well, that depends on the sin being committed. Is it a rights violation? Is it an injustice? If not, then there's no punishment. (I'd like to hear Reed's view on this.)

My views on Christians and politics are ably expressed here by a blogger called contracelsum.

More often than not Christians make disastrous political and civil rulers.

Richard

Michael Moeller's picture

What is the Christian punishment for gay marriage or polygamy?

Michael

Nice Try, Goode

Michael Moeller's picture

Let's see you play this out.

Richard wrote:

"Michael's example is taking two different concepts that have different essential characteristics (one is between a man and a woman vs. one between two men) within the broader concept of "unions"."

That means your definition of marriage is a union between a man and woman. Yet, there are plenty of unions between a man and a women that are not marriage. Egs. a business partnership, an athletic partnership, a friendship, etc. If that was the definition, all of these would qualify as a marriage.

Is it your position that business partnerships between a man and a woman are also marriages?!?

Let's see you give it another go at the definition of marriage. BTW, I did not say the essential characteristic of marriage is that it is between two men. You are making that up.

And let me clarify the rugby/soccer example. Soccer is a sport played between two teams of eleven players each with a spherical ball. That is enough to distinguish it from rugby, and all other sports.

Now let's see you do the same for the concept of marriage, which I think will be highly illuminating for everybody.

Micahel

Doug

Richard Goode's picture

Indeed, it is a fascinating geometrical issue. I do not want to get into the geometry right now because I want to focus on the real issue. Maybe later.

I'll just note this on Michael's example, which is Moeller at his finest. The goal of definitions is to differentiate the concept from other concepts of the same type by identifying their essential and distinguishing characteristic.

Michael's example is taking two different concepts that have different essential characteristics (one is between a man and a woman vs. one between two men) within the broader concept of "unions".

This would be a critique of quadrilaterals IF round squares and square squares had different essential characteristics. But they don't. When two things are different, but not different in their essential characteristic, you distinguish them with a qualifying concept, e.g., 'round squares' and 'square squares', 'good ideas' and 'colourless green ideas', etc.

If Equilateralists want to distinguish their type of quadrilateral, why not simply call them "squares", which is actually much better than "has four sides" because there are shapes with four sides that are not square.

Back to the realities.

Note that your proposed solution does not solve what you see as a geometry problem. If one person draws a polygon with four equal sides and four equal angles then you are back at square one. Further note that nobody is "forcing" square pegs into round holes.

Richard

Michael

Doug Bandler's picture

Good answer. I see that at root this *is* an epistemological problem and Conservatism is fundamentally incapable of solving it because they do not have the conceptual tools.

But they don't. When two things are different, but not different in their essential characteristic, you distinguish them with a qualifying concept, eg. 'gay marriage' and 'Christian marriage', 'coffee table' and 'kitchen table', etc.

I agree with you here but I wonder if the Christian argument (that heterosexual marriage having the potentiality of producing children is the fundamental essence of marriage) changes things.

If two or more people can set a terms for a contract and call it "marriage", you are back at square one.

Yeah, you're right. An objective definition of marriage is what is needed and I have never seen one offered by anyone.

Further note that nobody is "forcing" Christians to refer to their spouses as "partners", they are free to call each other "husband" and "wife".

Again you're right although the Conservatives will argue that society (ie modern liberal society) pressures them to use egalitarian language. They are right about this but the solution is to fight leftism not ban gay marriage.

Doug

Michael Moeller's picture

Indeed, it is a fascinating epistemological issue. I do not want to get into the epistemology right now because I want to focus on the legal issue. Maybe later.

I'll just note this on Richard's example, which is flawed epistemology at its finest. The goal of definitions is to differentiate the concept from other concepts of the same type by identifying their essential and distinguishing characteristic.

Richard's example is taking two different concepts that have different essential characteristics (one is played with the hands vs. one played without the hands) within the broader concept of "sports".

This would be a critique of marriage IF gay marriage and a Christian marriage had different essential characteristics. But they don't. When two things are different, but not different in their essential characteristic, you distinguish them with a qualifying concept, eg. 'gay marriage' and 'Christian marriage', 'coffee table' and 'kitchen table', etc.

If Christians want to distinguish their type of marriage, why not simply call it "Christian marriage", which is actually much better than "between a man and a woman" because there are marriages between a man and a woman that are not Christian.

Back to the legalities.

Note that your proposed solution does not solve what you see as a problem. If two or more people can set a terms for a contract and call it "marriage", you are back at square one. Christians would call their contract "marriage", and gay people would call their contract "marriage". It does not solve what you see as an epistemological problem. Further note that nobody is "forcing" Christians to refer to their spouses as "partners", they are free to call each other "husband" and "wife".

Michael

Michael

reed's picture

What is the reason you support laws for marriage between a man and woman?
No reason. I don't support marriage legislation.

Rugby (Definition of Rugby) Amendment Bill

Richard Goode's picture

Rugby is a game played by most boys in New Zealand in their childhood, though some don’t want to play it at all. A significant section of the community have always preferred to play a different sport, like soccer.

But Rugby gets all the status in New Zealand, commanding all the respect. So much so that those who play soccer are often made to feel like second-class citizens. They lack the mana of those who play the nation’s revered game.

To end this discrimination we have decided to redefine Rugby to include any sport involving two teams with a ball. As long as you love your team-ball sport you are a rugby player and should be recognised as such in law. Some of our opponents try scare mongering by saying: “well then hockey will end up being called rugby” – but that is not what we are saying at all. This bill is only about soccer players having the right to be considered rugby players like all other rugby players. Hockey uses a stick and no one is saying that should be called rugby.

This isn’t about whether you prefer soccer or rugby. It is a fundamental matter of justice and equality. Why should those soccer players who play every week with a ball against another team not have the equal opportunity and right to be recognised in the street as rugby players? Why are they denied the title and privileges on the grounds that they play differently? Shouldn’t all boys in New Zealand have the same rights regardless of their sporting preference? Why discriminate against boys for the way they choose to play their ball-sport? Aren’t we a country that prizes freedom of choice? In New Zealand you can be a rugby player if you are a boy or a girl, an Asian, Indian, Maori or European…. but apparently not if you are a soccer player.

We should remember that rugby itself has historically undergone many changes. Once upon a time, there were only four points for a try and now there are five. There are eight in the scrum today instead of six in earlier times. Before you had to jump by yourself in the lineout and now you can be lifted. So the Rugby Union is happy to adjust and refine the definition of rugby throughout the ages– but for some reason they stop at soccer. That old boys’ club want to control the definition themselves because underneath, they really regard soccer players as wusses. But look at how they handled their own finances in Otago. And let’s never forget that once upon a time there were white Rugby Union teams in South Africa who refused to let black people be rugby players alongside them. Do we want to perpetuate the same kind of discrimination by denying that soccer is an equally legitimate form of rugby?

New Zealand has always prided itself on a clear separation between sport and politics, and in the 21st century our political system needs to be free from all forms of discrimination. We led the world in giving women the vote. Yet there are still those who are happy to bar the door to those who play sport differently. There is no point in having a referendum on the issue because of course most rugby-playing New Zealanders will want to defend their privileges and guard the status quo.

Some say that we have already achieved equality, when the national soccer team finally got called the “All Whites”. That was a step in the right direction, but it didn’t go far enough. Soccer players need the same access to the “All Black” name and jersey. It’s not good enough to call them “All Whites” when overseas everyone’s heard of the All Blacks. No one talks about the All Whites. It is time to embrace the right of all ball-playing New Zealanders to be regarded as rugby players, regardless of the shape of the ball they use and how they choose to handle it.

[Author unknown. I found it here.]

Michael

Doug Bandler's picture

Many Conservatives argue that the state is destroying a legitimate concept of one man and one woman when they allow gays to "marry"; and they put the marry in quotes as a form of protest because they say that marriage can only be between a man and a woman.

To me this does raise an interesting definitional/epistemological question. Should the state define the term marriage as open to everyone? Especially since there is a substantive difference between a heterosexual and homosexual marriage (let alone polygamy). In other words, shouldn't it be left up to private individuals what to call the thing? Perhaps gay romantic unions should have a different term so we know what we are talking about. For example, who is "husband" and "wife" in a gay marriage? And I can agree with Conservatives when they say that the consequence is that everyone be forced to use the term "partner" so as not to offend. Thus they say, allowing gays to marry destroys traditional marriage.

I am wondering if the state should define marriage or just set the terms for romantic contracts in general and let the broader culture define what the term marriage refers to.

Rosie

Michael Moeller's picture

I already debunked (a) both as an invalid definition and as a matter of historical fact, and you had no answer. Keep repeating it if you want, but that does not make it any less invalid. As to (b), I gave you the solution, which is not to restrict the freedom of gays to marry, but to remove any restrictions on freedom to contract. As to (c), who cares. Not every gay couple agreed to those terms, because some who will be covered by the law are not yet even born. The issue is one of individual rights, and should be settled on those terms.

I must say I find it rather funny that you are relying on the concept of freedom in (b) to deny other people their freedom. Contradiction much?

Michael

Rosie

Michael Moeller's picture

In the case of private parties administering the oath, then it is a simple matter of freedom of contract. A priest, for instance, should not be forced to marry a gay couple -- not just as a matter of conscience, but also of involuntary servitude. He has his freedom whether to perform the service or not. The gay couple has to find somebody who will.

If it is the county clerk issuing marriage licenses, then he or she is hired to do that task according to the terms of their employment, which includes issuing them to gay people. The state is perfectly within their rights to fire the person if they refuse to issue a marriage license to a gay couple. Same if the state hires somebody to administer the oath.

Just as the a gay couple is not entitled to the services of a priest, a Christian is not entitled to a job at the state if they refuse to perform the functions of their employment.

Michael

Michael - Civil Unions vs Marriage

Rosie's picture

What you really mean to say that the definition does not exclude people from marrying according to Christian views. Rosie was afraid to say so explicitly

Was I?! Well that is news to me! I think I said that (a) marriage is between a man and a woman according to the word itself; and (b) to allow gay people to marry will create a whole new set of problems with regard to other people's freedoms; and (c) when the civil union law was introduced in 2004 in this country, it was expressly stated, prior to the Bill's enactment, that it would end at civil unions and gay marriage would not be sought.

Michael

Rosie's picture

Have you put your legal mind to how to protect those people who do not condone gay marriage for religious reasons and who do not therefore wish to marry gay couples in their churches/mosques/buildings but who will risk prosecution under the discrimination laws for their beliefs? In fact, they are not even allowed to voice/write their beliefs/opinions without risk of prosecution.

There are cases already reported on this.

Or do you think that the freedom for gay couples to have their marriages (instead of civil unions) supercedes other people's freedoms of expression, choice and religion?! Eye

Reed

Michael Moeller's picture

You wrote:

"Even if there were no reasons to oppose gay marriage legislation I'd still oppose it - I'd oppose creating any legislation unless there was a reason for it to exist."

What is the reason you support laws for marriage between a man and woman?

Michael

Richard

Michael Moeller's picture

You wrote:

"How? If the state defines what is a valid marriage, then the state's definition will include some people's beliefs and exclude other people's beliefs—about what is and is not a valid marriage."

Look at my definition, how does it exclude a Christian's views? Or my views? Or a gay person's views -- atheist, Christian, or otherwise? It doesn't. It is impartial towards anybody's views.

All it says is that any individual may get married, regardless of their views. You are free to marry according to Christian beliefs, and other people can get married according to their beliefs. Impartial means unbiased, Richard. It does not mean biased towards the views of Christians.

What you really mean to say that the definition does not exclude people from marrying according to Christian views. Rosie was afraid to say so explicitly, but you weren't:

"If this bill is passed, it will redefine marriage as "a union of 2 people regardless of their sex, sexual orientation, or gender identity." This will constitute a huge affront to a large sector of the Christian community, to whom marriage is ordained, by God, as being between one man and one woman. By what twisted logic could such a legislative action possibly be regarded as being "completely impartial" to so many Christians' beliefs about marriage?"

So now the standard of law is whether the law constitutes a "huge affront" to a majority of Christians? YIKES!

If and when my girlfriend and I get married, should we be denied because we do not believe or attest that our marriage is ordained by non-existence (i.e. God)? If a majority of Christians find my views a "huge affront"?

Let's apply this to free speech for a second.

"If a man happens to meet a virgin who is not pledged to be married and rapes her and they are discovered, he shall pay her father fifty shekels[a] of silver. He must marry the young woman, for he has violated her. He can never divorce her as long as he lives."

So if a man rapes an unmarried virgin, his punishment is to pay her father 50 pieces of silver and to marry her? Barbaric. I also find the idea of a marriage involving a ritual of faux-cannibalism and pledging that one's marriage was given by non-existence and subjugated to non-existence to be creepy, hilarious, and an affront to rationality.

Should my speech be silenced if my speech creates a "huge affront" to a majority of Christians?

Nope. The law says I may speak, and is impartial to the content of my speech. Likewise, the law says individuals may marry, and is impartial to one's views about marriage.

Richard, contra your allegedly libertarian views, you are trying to impose your Christian ideas by making them law.

Michael

Two guys, two CUPs

Richard Goode's picture

The only problem here Rosie ... Is that you have a problem with gay people being married and them wanting to say "hey we are married!"

The only problem here is two guys wanting to say, "Hey, we're married!" They can't truly say that. Because marriage is between a man and a woman.

In a gay marriage, who is the husband?

In a gay marriage, who is the wife?

In a gay marriage, do you each get to go to the other guy's stag do?

At a gay wedding, who is the bride?

At a gay wedding, who is the bridegroom?

On the wedding night, who carries whom across the threshold?

In a gay marriage, who gets to keep his maiden name?

In a gay marriage, who changes his name (for the sake of the adopted choowdren)?

Why is mine the only call to legalise gay divorce!?

After a gay divorce, who pays whom alimony?

Whatever else may be said about this bill, one thing's for sure. Its authors have not fully thought through its implications. Of course, our legislators haven't in the past, so why start now?

It really is a smoke screen rosie

Jules Troy's picture

Black rights

Religious rights

Gay rights

Women's rights

Etc etc etc

All these special interest rights groups are always at each other's throats lobbying for their own special set of rights.  All would be rendered irrelevant if the smallest and most important minorities was taken care of.

The rights of the individual.

Including their right to marry each other and be called a marriage with all that it entails.

Michael

Richard Goode's picture

the state defines what is a valid marriage.

The state should be completely impartial to anybody's beliefs about marriage.

How is it a contradiction?

How? If the state defines what is a valid marriage, then the state's definition will include some people's beliefs and exclude other people's beliefs—about what is and is not a valid marriage.

For example, Louisa Wall's Marriage (Definition of Marriage) Amendment Bill is nothing more than a (re)definition.

This Bill amends the Marriage Act 1955 (the principal Act) to ensure that its provisions are not applied in a discriminatory manner. The principal Act does not define marriage and makes no reference to a marriage being between a man and a woman. Essentially the principal Act sets out the technical requirements for the civil regulation of marriage. However, couples, other than a man and a woman, have not been permitted to obtain marriage licences under the principal Act.

Oh. So the state doesn't define what is a valid marriage! At least, the New Zealand government doesn't. So, you're wrong about that. "The principal Act does not define marriage." From the horse's mouth.

This Bill will make it clear that a marriage is a union of 2 people regardless of their sex, sexual orientation, or gender identity. It will ensure that all people, regardless of their sex, sexual orientation, or gender identity will have the opportunity to marry if they so choose. Marriage, as a social institution, is a fundamental human right and limiting that human right to 1 group in society only does not allow for equality. This Bill will ensure that there is equality for people wishing to marry regardless of their sex, sexual orientation, or gender identity and will be in accordance with the New Zealand Bill of Rights Act 1990 and the Human Rights Act 1993.

If this bill is passed, it will redefine marriage as "a union of 2 people regardless of their sex, sexual orientation, or gender identity." This will constitute a huge affront to a large sector of the Christian community, to whom marriage is ordained, by God, as being between one man and one woman. By what twisted logic could such a legislative action possibly be regarded as being "completely impartial" to so many Christians' beliefs about marriage?

More problems

Rosie's picture

More problems will be created than solved unless the discrimination laws can be avoided.

A brief google search and, just in the first two pages, the below listed lawsuits sprung up which are lawsuits against people's freedoms to live as they choose (rightly or wrongly) but which do not include loving thy gay married neighbours.

Property sales, teachers, ministers, B&B owners - all sued for discrimination against gay married couples. Sad though their unenlightened, unloving, prejudicial attitude may be, it is still the right and freedom of an individual to sell his property to whomsoever he chooses, have whomsoever he chooses in his B&B or church, teach what he chooses and not be sued for his ideology or his unloving and/or (maybe wrong) Christian beliefs. Eye

I honestly can't stand all this stupidity. And they probably all believe themselves to be "absolutely 100% right" - without pause to reflect, consider or reconsider or to respect anyone else's freedoms. And I mean the gay couples just as much as the prejudiced ones and the ones with religious convictions.

I am beginning to wonder whether my solution would work after all, after reading these articles.

http://www.catholicherald.co.u...

http://www.lifesitenews.com/ne...

http://faithinourfamilies.word...

http://nzconservative.blogspot...

http://freethinker.co.uk/2012/...

http://www.dailymail.co.uk/new...

Michael

reed's picture

Focus on the *while* in your statement. Isn't it really an argument for repeal?
No but there are other reasons to repeal those laws.

In other words, if that was the only argument against same-sex marriage, what happens to the argument against same-sex marriage should they be repealed?
There are other reasons to oppose gay marriage legislation.
Even if there were no reasons to oppose gay marriage legislation I'd still oppose it - I'd oppose creating any legislation unless there was a reason for it to exist.

Rosie

Michael Moeller's picture

You leaving anything out? From here:

"Roman social customs are relatively well known, and same-sex unions existed as high in society as among Roman emperors. Roman statesman Cicero also documented legal rights of an individual within a same-sex marriage. Female same-sex unions seemed to have been less common, but only because women enjoyed less freedom in their economic and social endeavors (Eskridge)."

As to your dictionary definition guff, at one time the church defined the earth as flat. Should that not have been changed?

At one time women were defined as a man's property. Should that not have been changed?

Actually, let's go straight to the bible for definitions while we are at it:

"This is now bone of my bones, and flesh of my flesh: she shall be called Woman, because she was taken out of Man”.

The church isn't too good with biology, should the dictionary definition of labor be updated?

How about marriage:

"So after Abram had been living in Canaan ten years, Sarai his wife took her Egyptian maidservant Hagar and gave her to her husband to be his wife." Genesis 16:3

So, according to the Bible, marriage can be between a man, his sister, and a maidservant? Hmmm.

Well, at least you use a modern dictionary, Rosie. I shutter to think of your low stage of mental development if you used church history and the bible for your definitions.

Michael

Abraham Lincoln

Richard Goode's picture

How many legs does a donkey have if you call the tail a leg?

The only problem here Rosie

Jules Troy's picture

Is that you have a problem with gay people being married and them wanting to say "hey we are married!" 

I mean seriously what do you want them to say "hey we are civil unioned?" That is just retarded.

You are mincing words as to a definition in order to protect the rights of clergy who may be indignant over performing their duty to marry people.  Kind of ironic giving the number of priests that rape boys..

Jules (Steve) - Same sex unions but not "marriage"

Rosie's picture

I was not aware of this practice in the Christian Church. I note that they were called "same sex unions" and never "marriage". This is in keeping with (i) my proposal, (ii) God-given free will and (iii)confirms the logic of what actually constitutes "marriage".

"Yet after a twelve year search of Catholic and Orthodox church archives Yale history professor John Boswell has discovered that a type of Christian gay marriage did exist as late as the 18th century."

A type of Christian gay marriage.

the same sex union of Byzantine Emperor Basil I (867-886) and his companion John.
One Greek 13th century "Order for Solemnization of Same Sex Union,"
"Office of Same Sex Union" (10th and 11th century Greek)
the "Order for Uniting Two Men" (11th and 12th century).

While homosexuality was technically illegal from late Roman times, it was only from about the 14th century that anti-homosexual feelings swept western Europe. Yet same sex unions continued to take place.

I have no problem with same sex unions and equal rights for all in the same position regardless of gender etc but it is just nonsense to insist upon calling same sex unions, marriage. It isn't marriage and as much as anyone may seek to change the dictionary definition of marriage, the word's derivation is not changeable. My proposal solves the practical problems of any existing discrimination as well as the practical problems regarding property on divorce and custody/access of any children of a couple as well as the discrimination problems it would create for the religious ministers not wishing to officiate over same-sex unions or marriages if the definition of marriage were to change.

If anyone can else can provide a solution that addresses all these issues so simply and satisfactorily, great. Smiling

And if there is a problem with my solution because the homosexuals ONLY want to be called married then the cries of inequality, the cries that nothing more but civil unions was all that would ever be asked in the days that this was legalised in the first place is just a sham and there is something more - some other agenda - going on.

If an animal has four legs, a tail and goes "woof, woof!" and you are told it is a cat, what is it? A dog.

Case dismissed!!

Reed

Michael Moeller's picture

Focus on the *while* in your statement. Isn't it really an argument for repeal?

In other words, if that was the only argument against same-sex marriage, what happens to the argument against same-sex marriage should they be repealed?

Michael

Michael

reed's picture

It's an argument against gay marriage legislation while those other laws exist.

Rosie

Michael Moeller's picture

That's an argument against those laws, not an argument against same-sex marriage.

Michael

As to your problem, there

Rosie's picture

As to your problem, there should be no requirement that an authority has to marry certain people

Unfortunately both in the USA and NZ there is a problem here because of the discrimination laws.

Legal Opinion:
http://www.protectmarriage.org...

http://crybelovedcountry.com/2...

Rosie

Michael Moeller's picture

Wikipedia notes same-sex marriages were performed in Ancient Greece and Rome, and gives references.

As to your problem, there should be no requirement that an authority has to marry certain people, but that does not address the essential issue.

Michael

You didnt know this stuff seriously?

Jules Troy's picture

Linz -- Three Questions

Michael Moeller's picture

It is true that you do not explicitly state the marriage cannot be objectively defined.

However, your position is tantamount to subjective law. You leave the definition to the private parties, which leaves a judge with no standard to decide a case. Consider my Bill and Erin.

How do you resolve that situation?

The reason it fails is because it does not define the conduct, in advance, for what constitutes a marriage. These are two requirements of objective law.

You wrote: "But according to you, "marriage" is what the state says it is."

Where did I say that? That's news to me. Eye

My position is that the state should define marriage in accordance with individual rights, like all other laws.

It does not mean the state WILL do so, which is true of any other law, see e.g., Obamacare. The state can implement a law inconsistent with individual rights, but it does not follow that they should not legislate in an area.

Why does your counter example of the NZ Marriage Act fail? Because it is inconsistent with valid constitutional standards. The right at issue is the freedom to associate, but where only between a man and a woman, it is denying equality under the law. That's why it should be rejected, whereas my definition is valid.

Linz, you wrote:

"The things you list—sound mind, age of consent, etc.—are not definitions of marriage, they are prerequisites of it and any other contractual arrangement. As such, of course the state is entitled to insist on them before registering a marriage, assuming the parties wish their marriage registered. That's different from saying it's the state's role to define marriage."

If you were truly consistent that it should be strictly between private parties and the state should keep out, then this would include an adult marrying a minor. After all, some people think it is perfectly valid to marry a minor, according to their social mores.

Why is the state allowed to define who can get married according to age and mental capacity, but not sex?

Secondly, you're skipping the rest of my requirements. It includes MORE than just being of age and mental capacity, but also specific conduct to consummate the marriage. After all, marrying IS the act of forming the social union of marriage, and the definition lays out what acts are required.

What is wrong with the definition, keeping in mind my caveat that it has to be within the parameters of individual rights?

You wrote:

"Separation of state and marriage—separation of state and personal relationships generally—still sounds good to me."

But there is not a separation of state and marriage, it is engaged in the relationship to the extent of property and custody rights, which we both agree on. That's where this argument started, and I think that is a bad way to frame it. The better way is that the state should be involved in marriage only to the extent it deals with property rights and custody rights.

And to determine if a valid marriage is in place, it has to set a standard of conduct determining when a marriage has been consummated. I think this is inescapable, in fact, if you want an objective law on marriage.

Michael

Jules (Steve)

Rosie's picture

Thanks very much for that!

Very interesting indeed.

So what brought about the change in thought and practice for the Christian Church I wonder? The words of JC seem pretty clear on the matter (though clearly ignored as the link attests) but I have thought to myself that :

(a) the laws of the Jewish people were not supposed to be inflicted on the Gentiles; and

(b) the most important commandment is to love both God and each other. (No qualifications.)

Thar ya go rosie!!

Jules Troy's picture

Michael

Rosie's picture

In fact, Rosie, same-sex marriage pre-dates Christianity.

Really?! Where and when was this?! Can you provide a source?

(I am not saying I don't believe you when I ask for a source but simply that this interests me and I would like to learn more about it.)

Michael

Rosie's picture

The people I want to protect are the people who are currently being sued for discrimination because they do not believe that they can marry homosexual couples according to their religious beliefs. These people's freedoms are being robbed from them as they are bullied and co-erced by the State in to doing something they do not want to do in their own churches. That makes me very angry.

Do you have a solution to this problem?

My proposed solution protects them, you see.

Rosie

Michael Moeller's picture

This is going around in circles. In fact, Rosie, same-sex marriage pre-dates Christianity.

But rights are not a matter of historical example or dictionary definition. A current definition may improperly recognize a fact of reality.

Do you want to go back to a definition of property that includes women as chattel? Something tells me not.

Yet, by your logic, when that was the current dictionary definition, it could not be changed because that's what the dictionary said.

Sound good?

Michael

Two questions, Michael

Lindsay Perigo's picture

You say:

Linz makes the faulty assumption that the definition of marriage cannot be defined objectively recognizing the right to marry of all individuals.

What makes you think I make that assumption? If I do, it's certainly news to me!

Then you say:

This is a war of dictionary definitions, which can change. It is a recognition of the individual's right to freely associate, including entering formal unions and calling it "marriage" if they like.

But according to you, "marriage" is what the state says it is. And the state says no same-sex union can be a marriage. Is it your position that the state has it wrong on this, but that it is nonetheless the state's role to define marriage?

The things you list—sound mind, age of consent, etc.—are not definitions of marriage, they are prerequisites of it and any other contractual arrangement. As such, of course the state is entitled to insist on them before registering a marriage, assuming the parties wish their marriage registered. That's different from saying it's the state's role to define marriage.

Separation of state and marriage—separation of state and personal relationships generally—still sounds good to me.

Michael

Rosie's picture

Do you not recognize the right of *all*individuals to enter such an arrangement? If not, then why should they recognize your right?

I think my proposed solution does recognise all people's rights.

Every couple wishing to enter a formal recognition of their "coupledom" must enter a civil union that is recognised for the purposes of the law and to provide equal rights regardless of gender. This would be the only requirement for legal purposes that involve the State.

For those people who also wish their coupledom to be recognised by God (or Mohammad or whatever or whoever else) AND believe that to do so, because of their religious or other doctrine (and this is NOT my belief or wish), they may also have a spiritual ceremony.

For the couple in this subset whose couple are made from a man and a woman, and who wish to adopt this second procedure, this is called marriage because this is how the word is currently defined and is historically created.

Why would a homosexual couple desire this word to be applied to their couple so much that they would wish to change the Oxford dictionary (marriage, husband, wife, spouse, bride, groom, best man, bridesmaid etc) and completely ignore the historical etymology of the words?! Beats me. If everyone just had a civil union for the purposes of correcting the inequality or discrimination problems that allegedly currently exist, and the word marriage had no legal significance, I can't understand why there remains any problem?!

Rosie

Michael Moeller's picture

Rosie, did you see the next sentence of Wikipedia that states definitions may vary?

This is a war of dictionary definitions, which can change. It is a recognition of the individual's right to freely associate, including entering formal unions and calling it "marriage" if they like.

Do you not recognize the right of *all*individuals to enter such an arrangement? If not, then why should they recognize your right?

Michael

Michael

Rosie's picture

All the state should be concerned with is recognizing this right to associate, the right to enter a formal union. And all the law does is define the conduct to consummate the union, just as it defines the conduct that constitutes murder.

For example: Two or more persons shall be married if: (1) the parties are of the age of consent, (2) the parties are of mental capacity, (3) the parties take an oath, (4) before a recognized authority of the state that can administer the oath (eg. justice of the peace, priest, etc.), (5) and before two or more witnesses, (6) that they shall be joined in marriage. This could also include obtaining a marriage license, and the authority submitting the license to the state once the marriage is consummated.

It's just that simple. All the law does is set a standard of conduct that the parties intend to be married, and consummate the marriage. It is simply setting formalities to make sure the persons or of age and mental capacity, and that the parties formally express their desire to enter into marriage and with witnesses in case the consummation is later called into question.

So is your view that you agree with Louisa Wall's proposed Marriage Definition (Amendment) Act?

Definition of spouse

Rosie's picture

http://oxforddictionaries.com/...

spouse Pronunciation: /spaʊz, -s/

Definition of spouse
noun

a husband or wife, considered in relation to their partner.

Origin:

Middle English: from Old French spous(e), variant of espous(e), from Latin sponsus (masculine), sponsa (feminine), past participles of spondere 'betroth'

What is also part of reality, Rosie, is that people should have the freedom to associate, including entering into a formal union, if they so choose.

Where does my solution prevent or restrict this freedom, Michael?

Rosie

Michael Moeller's picture

And what happens if the dictionary definition changes tomorrow to include same-sex couples? In fact, Wikipedia says:

"Marriage (also called matrimony or wedlock) is a social union or legal contract between people called spouses that creates kinship."

What is also part of reality, Rosie, is that people should have the freedom to associate, including entering into a formal union, if they so choose.

All the state should be concerned with is recognizing this right to associate, the right to enter a formal union. And all the law does is define the conduct to consummate the union, just as it defines the conduct that constitutes murder.

For example: Two or more persons shall be married if: (1) the parties are of the age of consent, (2) the parties are of mental capacity, (3) the parties take an oath, (4) before a recognized authority of the state that can administer the oath (eg. justice of the peace, priest, etc.), (5) and before two or more witnesses, (6) that they shall be joined in marriage. This could also include obtaining a marriage license, and the authority submitting the license to the state once the marriage is consummated.

It's just that simple. All the law does is set a standard of conduct that the parties intend to be married, and consummate the marriage. It is simply setting formalities to make sure the persons or of age and mental capacity, and that the parties formally express their desire to enter into marriage and with witnesses in case the consummation is later called into question.

Michael

More on "marriage"

Rosie's picture

Here is the Wikipedia article about marriage for interest.

Note that it was only after Martin Luther and the Protestant Reformation that marriage was considered a matter for the State at all!

" [T]he role of recording marriages and setting the rules for marriage passed to the state, reflecting Martin Luther's view that marriage was a "worldly thing"."

Note also:
"From the early Christian era (30 to 325 CE), marriage was thought of as primarily a private matter, with no uniform religious or other ceremony being required. "

That is actually my view about marriage f.y.i!! I don't like, and would not wish for, a ceremony at all!

So I am not imposing my views at all, Michael. I am providing a solution that works for all parties from a legal non-discriminatory viewpoint (the alleged problem) and also retains the meaning of the word "marriage" as defined. The civil union for ALL people does not preclude their motives for joining together being romantic or religious or financial or otherwise AND they can party all night with a ceremony too. But that can NEVER make a homosexual couple a husband and a wife and therefore married as the word is defined!

Anything else seems pretty illogical to me.

Michael

Rosie's picture

I did not invent the word marriage.
I did not invent the word husband.
I did not invent the word wife.
I did not invent the word man.
I did not invent the word woman.

My civil union solution addresses the problems that need to be addressed by the homosexual couples who say they are discriminated against in law because they are not "married". But it is not the fact they are not "married" that discriminates them, it is because their civil union was not recognised in the same way as marriage.

My solution requires ALL those wishing to be "married" (as currently understood) to form civil unions for the purposes of the law - the word "marriage" would not even appear on the forms that need to be completed for the bank loan etc because marriage would cease to hold any legal status.

The word marriage is what it is in reality. What it is in reality is its definition. Just as husband, wife, man and woman are defined according to reality.

Doug

Michael Moeller's picture

As a general principle, in addition to force/fraud, I would simply add that the state may intervene when there is an individual rights dispute between two or more parties.

Michael

Rosie

Michael Moeller's picture

Rosie, you are arrogating the concept "marriage" to comply with your religious beliefs, and then trying to implement it into law. People don't agree with your religious beliefs, myself included.

So why should your right to marry be recognized, but same-sex couples right to marry not be recognized? Your stipulation for marriage is denying the same right to others. No dice.

By all means, have a church ceremony according to your beliefs, you are free to do so. What you are not free to do is prevent others from entering into marriage.

Michael

Michael

Rosie's picture

You are trying to impose your beliefs about marriage on them.

No, I'm not, Michael! You can't have understood my post. I am attempting to provide a legal framework for ALL people to be able to join together as a couple for the purposes of what the Gummint is responsible for - the equal, undiscriminating protection of their rights. This civil aspect of the legal relationship for ALL people who wish to join together is called a civil union. Only as an extra thing may those folk wanting to add the spiritual dimension to the relationship choose to do so and this is called marriage as the word is defined.

Here is the Etymology of the word "Marriage":

The word "marriage" derives from Middle English mariage, which first appears in 1250–1300 CE This in turn is derived from Old French marier (to marry) and ultimately Latin marītāre meaning to provide with a husband or wife and marītāri meaning to get married. (The adjective marīt-us -a, -um meaning matrimonial or nuptial could also be used in the masculine form as a noun for "husband" and in the feminine form for "wife." The related word "matrimony" derives from the Old French word matremoine which appears around 1300 CE and ultimately derives from Latin mātrimōnium which combines the two concepts mater meaning "mother" and the suffix -monium signifying "action, state, or condition." "

Here is the Oxford dictionary definition of marriage.
Here is the dictionary.com definition of marriage.
In fact every dictionary I have looked up defines marriage as between a man and a woman. The very word itself excludes same sex marriage - which of the two women is to be the "husband" for example?

I.e., Two aspects to what we currently call marriage: the legal or civil aspect and the religious or spiritual aspect. Two distinct ceremonies. The civil one is registered with the Gummint and covers the legal aspects to provide equality. The spiritual one is outside the law as this has nothing to do with the Gummint.

Get it?

And if there is any problem with this - the use of the word 'marriage' when all the equal rights of the institution for ALL couples are protected by the 'civil union' as registered with the Gummint, then the politics of the situation is clearly exposed since the supposed reason for the need to change the legal definition of "marriage" has been addressed by ALL people having "civil unions" for the purposes of the law leaving the word marriage as it is universally understood and defined.

Opens up a can of worms Michael

Doug Bandler's picture

Yes, the state can and should intervene to settle the dispute and prevent dissolution into violence, but technically it is not retaliatory force in the dispute between A and C because neither A nor C has initiated force. It was B who initiated force, against whom the state can use retaliatory force.

But how would you classify it?

Also, this does open up a can of worms. Because now, government is not just in existence to prevent the initiation of force. Now there is more which means this must be connected to Objectivism's central defense of the mind. I'm sure it can be done but I don't think Rand did it. Am I wrong?

Doug

Michael Moeller's picture

You wrote:

"But I think in the end it does reduce to force because if those legitimate property disputes are not peacefully adjudicated then the parties will inevitable have to use force to do so. That is society destroying violence and thus "initiatory force". I have long thought that a treatise needs to be written on what exactly initiatory force means and its applications and implications."

I agree that the consequence is that society does not dissolve into violence. Technically speaking, however, it may not be the initiation of force.

For instance, B steals a watch from A. B then sells the watch to C, who has no reason to believe the watch is stolen and believes he is getting good title. Now, A wants his watch back from C.

Technically speaking, both A and C have a legitimate property claim to the watch, and thus there is no initiation of force if A used force to get it back, or C used force to keep it. A legitimately owned the watch, and C legitimately bought the watch.

Yes, the state can and should intervene to settle the dispute and prevent dissolution into violence, but technically it is not retaliatory force in the dispute between A and C because neither A nor C has initiated force. It was B who initiated force, against whom the state can use retaliatory force.

Michael

Goode

Michael Moeller's picture

How is it a contradiction?

Who says the definition has to include anything about a person's beliefs regarding marriage? It doesn't, nor should it.

Michael

Michael

Richard Goode's picture

the state defines what is a valid marriage.

The state should be completely impartial to anybody's beliefs about marriage.

Contradiction, much?

Rosie

Michael Moeller's picture

You wrote:

"Marriage, to me, means something more than a civil union. I consider a civil union to be worldly only whereas I see marriage as having a spiritual dimension."

Yes, but what about those individuals who see marriage as simply a romantic relationship without God? You are trying to impose your beliefs about marriage on them. Or what about a same-sex couple who believes that their marriage is consistent with Christianity? If you deny them, you are imposing your beliefs about marriage and Christianity on them.

The state should be completely impartial to anybody's beliefs about marriage. Their only role is to recognize any individual's right to marry. Period.

Linz makes the faulty assumption that the definition of marriage cannot be defined objectively recognizing the right to marry of all individuals. He goes the other way and leaves it to the discretion of private parties.

However, this has the opposite consequence that he intends. The state, by necessity, will start involving itself in religious doctrine. For instance, Bill is of Religion A and Erin of Religion B, and they decide to get married in a ceremony before their families. Erin later files for divorce seeking half of Bill's property. Bill claims the marriage was invalid because it is well know that he is of Religion A and Religion A forbids marrying people outside that religion. Even though they got married in a church of Religion A, he gets authorities of Religion A to testify that such a marriage is considered null and void according to their religious teachings.

How do you decide without reference to a standard set by the state? You can't.

This standard collapses under any limitless number of scenarios.

Michael

Reed

Michael Moeller's picture

Your latest syllogism is pure rationalism. All you have done is substitute "government" for "authority of the people". It still does not resolve the situations I provided where it is perfectly legitimate for the government to limit terms of a contract.

Why not try a little induction and ask yourself why it is legitimate for the government to do so, and then formulate a principle?

In any event, your questions:

"Is there any area of life that shouldn't have the "ground rules" legislated?"

Reed, the law only comes into play when there is an initial of force or a legitimate competing claims of rights. The issue is individual rights. For instance, the government has no say over my freedom of movement, but can and should inject itself when I enter somebody's property. The law defines the boundaries of my rights with respect to all individuals and vice-versa, and settles cases where there is a dispute about the line.

Reed asked:

"Your justification (whatever it is) is a justification for all regulations, isn't it?"

Absolutely not. You are confusing objective law/rules with regulations. I reject all regulations for the same reasons as above. Regulations, essentially, hold a person guilty before the person has committed a violation of rights, and therefore said person must show their innocence by meeting some government standard.

For instance, I should have the right to sell food to other people, but the government says I must meet certain quality standards. The government is treating me as if I sold somebody poisoned food before I ever sold food and poisoned somebody!!

As to your question of what industries should have their "own legal framework", the question is improper. Any law that applies to to the individuals or corporations working in those individuals must be solely restricted to individual rights, and any number of rights issues can arise. The primary issue is individual rights, not a particular industry.

For instance, consider the food production industry. A contract dispute could come up between an employee and the company. A tort could come up if the company was negligent and caused harm to another person. A crime could come up if somebody at the food production company embezzled money. A constitutional issue could come up if the food production company has to meet government regulations. Smiling

In other words, your question is way off in the weeds.

Michael

What Does It Take To Solemnize A Marriage?

Richard Goode's picture

By: LawInfo

The concept of solemnization of the marriage literally refers to the ceremony involved. It is not enough to simply marry within the geographical limits of a state; there must be some ceremony involved. Generally speaking there is no universal form required for solemnization of the marriage, unless set by statute, but the parties shall declare, in the presence of the person solemnizing the marriage and necessary witnesses that they take each other as husband and wife.

[My italics - how do gay couples do this? Does it involve more or less contortion than Robin Bain shooting himself in the head?]

Legitimate Property Disputes - Very Important

Doug Bandler's picture

Rand herself recognized this possibility, but did not make it part of her justification for the government's use of force. She said the state could only use reliatory force in response to the initiation of force, which is not quite correct. There are legitimate property disputes in which neither party has used force, but the dispute needs to be adjudicated, and the judgment enforced.

But I think in the end it does reduce to force because if those legitimate property disputes are not peacefully adjudicated then the parties will inevitable have to use force to do so. That is society destroying violence and thus "initiatory force". I have long thought that a treatise needs to be written on what exactly initiatory force means and its applications and implications.

But why Michael is right and all libertarians are wrong is that without government settling contract and property disputes, no one else can (objectively or peacefully). Thus libertarianism reduces to anarchism which reduces to civilizational destruction. Rand was very right about this. And its another reason why Objectivists are NOT libertarians. I still wonder if we can be thought of as a derivative of Classical Liberalism but I'm not sure.

The government must act as an agent of retaliatory force AND it must provide a legal/political framework where people can interact (contracts, property, etc) in a way where epistemological certainty is possible (without such certainty no society is possible - this is something that anarchists deny with their DROs which are of course a delusion). That means the government must set rules for contracts, wills, property, deeds, bankruptcy proceedings, etc. The trick is to make sure that there is no corruption here; ie the Federal Reserve, anti-discrimination regulations, etc..

This is a good thread for explaining and demonstrating the importance of government in marriage law. At one time I thought that the "government should get out of marriage" or "there should be a separation of state and marriage", etc. I was very wrong in my formulation.

Further Clarification

reed's picture

1. In democracies the government’s authority comes from the people.
2. The people lack the authority to dictate terms of other people’s contracts.
3. therefore, in democracies the government lacks the authority to dictate terms of other people’s contracts.

Rosie

Jules Troy's picture

I have not heard of any, people for the most part don't give it much attention up here as it is a non issue.

 

Steve

Richard Goode's picture

P.S. Slayer f{#cking sucks

All the best things in life do.

If you don't feel glad to be alive after a good pounding by Slayer, then there's something wrong with you.

Jules

Rosie's picture

Have there been any problems with Christian Ministers not agreeing to marry same sex couples and being sued for discrimination in Canada?

But Canada?! It's not even a real country anyway, is it?

Not according to South Park! Eye

In Canada..

Jules Troy's picture

In Canada marriage between same sex couples is legal and they are afforded the same rights and advantages as those that are afforded to traditional married couples. The only draw back for those wishing to travel to Canada in order to be legally married is that if the country you reside in does not recognise the union you would have to travel back to Canada in order to get a divorce!(this has happened)

Michael - Civil Unions vs Marriage

Rosie's picture

As to your civil union solution, it would simply be marriage by another name.

But I wonder whether marriage by any other name would smell as sweet to those who wish to alter its definition?
This would be an interesting test.

I did not intend my 'civil union solution' to be marriage by another name, you see. To me they are distinct.

Marriage, to me, means something more than a civil union. I consider a civil union to be worldly only whereas I see marriage as having a spiritual dimension. That is why I am more happy to call the legal, worldly arrangement of the joining together of two people for the worldly reasons of equal treatment before the law re property, bank loans, tax advantages and wanting to be the one to say "Euthenase him!" etc to be called a civil union and keep the word "marriage" outside the legal sphere and available to one man and one woman only (before God, for those who believe in God being part of marriage).

This way leaves open the freedom for each human being to live according to his will without subjecting the Government to making legislation imbued with any morality as such. These choices belong to the individual after all and, for those who believe that the Government should not condone what they perceive to be "Christian immorality", these same people should remember that they do not stand before the Gummint but God for their choices on Judgement Day.

Renaming what is currently known as 'marriage' as 'civil union' for the purposes of legislation would leave marriage as a spiritual estate and outside the Gummint's mandate. This would then protect those Christian Ministers who are currently being sued for discrimination because they refuse to agree to marry a homosexual couple. Which, surely, is their right and should be protected also.

You would still need to define what constitutes a civil union, i.e. is it at the discretion of the parties or is it defined by statue? Linz says the former, I say the latter.

I see no reason why it can not be both although the statute would be required to include those words "at the discretion of the parties" (Presumably the "parties" will be adults until such time as the Muslims wish to have their child brides included in the legislation and, strictly speaking, even that choice is really strictly more libertarian than not - it doesn't need to be taken by those who don't agree - for doesn't libertarianism insist that moral (and other) responsibility rests with the individual only and not the Gummint? Parents probably should have some say over their children's decisions up to a certain age though.

I'll untie the Gordian knot, don't worry.

If you do, you will have to be the king of Asia according to Greek myth. Who is worrying now? Eye

Richard..

Jules Troy's picture

While your envy of my obviously far superior virility is flattering it has nothing to do with the discussion please restrain yourself!

P.S.   Slayer f{#cking sucks

Death's Head

Richard Goode's picture

Coincidence?

Richard Goode's picture

Reed...

Michael Moeller's picture

I didn't see much point in going further if you cannot grasp what are terms in a contract and acknowledge at least a few concrete situations where the state can validly set limitations on contract terms. But you're correct, I promised.

I will answer them tomorrow.

Michael

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