02 June 2008

A union by any other name

[T]he legal issue we must resolve is not whether it would be constitutionally permissible under the California Constitution for the state to limit marriage only to opposite-sex couples while denying same-sex couples any opportunity to enter into an official relationship with all or virtually all of the same substantive attributes, but rather whether our state Constitution prohibits the state from establishing a statutory scheme in which both opposite-sex and same-sex couples are granted the right to enter into an officially recognized family relationship that affords all of the significant legal rights and obligations traditionally associated under state law with the institution of marriage, but under which the union of an opposite-sex couple is officially designated a “marriage” whereas the union of a same-sex couple is officially designated a “domestic partnership.” The question we must address is whether, under these circumstances, the failure to designate the official relationship of same-sex couples as marriage violates the California Constitution.In re Marriage Cases, here.




This is a truck:








and so is this:
















While you can properly, depending upon the context, use the same word (i.e., truck) to refer to both, you might want to use different words to distinguish one truck from another. You might get a little irritated if it were declared illegal to make such a distinction.

This is a picture of a union, of sorts:












This also is a picture of a union, of sorts:





















We probably don’t need to say much to distinguish these two unions from each other. While you can properly, depending upon the context, use the same word (i.e., union) to refer to both, you might want to use different words to distinguish one union from another. You might get a little irritated if it were declared illegal to make such a distinction.

But that is exactly what happened when the California Supreme Court declared it unconstitutional for the State of California to use different words in the law to distinguish this type of union






















from this type of union:


















It may be that, as the court puts it, that since opposite-sex and same-sex couples are able have a relationship “that affords all of the significant legal rights and obligations traditionally associated under state law with the institution of marriage” it is unconstitutional to refer to the union of opposite-sex couple as a “marriage” and the union of a same-sex couple as a “domestic partnership.”

If the people of the State of California really have a constitution in which they deny themselves the right to distinguish between a same-sex union and an opposite-sex union they can certainly fix it. But what’s really going on here is thought control. Gays are not satisfied with having the same rights as straights. (And the court’s language indicates that this is, indeed, the case.) Gays want to control the language used to discuss their unions. They want to have relationships which are identical with the exception of the sexes of the parties and at the same time to have it illegal to use terms which distinguish same sex unions from opposite sex union. It used to be about "equal" rights. Now it's about identical terms.



What if opposite sex couples just happen to want a term which specifies that their union is the union of a male and a female, not a male and a male or a female and a male? Too bad, I guess.




Tony at Catholic Pillow Fight also comments, here, linking to Creative Minority Report, here.

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James Frank SolĂ­s
Former soldier (USA). Graduate-level educated. Married 26 years. Texas ex-patriate. Ruling elder in the Presbyterian Church in America.
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