Saturday, July 18, 2015

On Marriage - Lets say goodbye to the State

Gay Marriage, Straight Marriage. Who cares? The state should not be into the business of legalizing marriage to begin with. Lets chalk this up to another revenue/employment boondoggle that increases the reach of government in a way that is both intrusive and unnecessary in a free society. I personally support the institution of marriage, and have voted to the affirmative with my feet but that does not mean that I believe in the need for the state to sanctify my ...relationship status with my wife. Why should I? A marriage bond is a commitment between two people centered on the mutual consent of both parties. Religious oversight may be welcome (it was in my case) but in retrospect it is also not a deal breaker. What is of importance is the presence of a few witnesses to take note and verify the exchange of vows and attest to all proceedings in writing. Nothing more.

Yes I know that there are financial considerations that marriage implies and a state infrastructure may have been necessary at a time to rigidly enforce this but such an argument has become less relevant in an age that continues to see a surge of sui juris marriage (Common-law or marriage by habit and repute) into this arena.

Champions of the state abdicating its role as enforcers of marriage, the Marriage Privatization Movement , have traditionally drawn support from the Libertarian Right. However they have been joined in the last decade or so by small 'l' liberals such as Cass Sunstein, Alan Dershowitz, and Michael Kinsley. This position is also supported as well by Catholic commentator Douglas Kmiec, conservative libertarian Larry Elder and GOP congressmen, Justin Amash and Gary Palmer.

At its core the Movement champions the return of marriage to its natural locus - the married couple - and away from the spotlight of the state by limiting, if not completely eliminating the latter from the agreement.

The stance is both reasonable and refreshing and may rescue marriage from its slide in popularity that has characterized its appeal in the modern era.

As Individualist feminist, Wendy McElroy put it:
'Why is marriage declining? One reason is that it has become a three-way contract between two people and the government'.

If this indeed the case, and there is much evidence to argue the point, then it seems obvious as to which of the three parties should be kicked out of the relationship.
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