Today I'm idly pondering if this was a mistake. In a country where the idea of the negativity of a central national religion has shifted into a rather extreme 'seperation of church and state', as the phrase goes, where a precedent of government policy be that it not excessively entangle government in religion, how has the institution of marriage survived at all in it's current state?
Perhaps I am mistaken, but isn't marriage by nature both religious as well as legal, or at the very least, isn't it safe to say that the idea of marriage crosses this line? To that end, is it really safe to tie the legal conotations of a comitted couple into that same ceremony, or would it be more appropriate to seperate them entirely, effectively nullifying the concept of marriage as we know it and resurrecting it as at least two seperate entities, one carrying the weight of the law and the other the weight of religion?
That's the first point I wanted to make; I'm not necesairly saying it's a valid point or even one I agree with, but it's a train of thought I was riding today.
Part of the reason I was dwelling upon this was becasue, in my investigation of the legitimacy or irresponsible nature of legalizing gay marriage, I have been wondering if the issue is not so much with the nature of the relationship but with the nature of the institution. I remember back when I was politically (and overall morally) unaware, back when we--that is, any number of the group of fifteen or so whom, in my mind, constituted the base of my friends--would hang around my house, a Starbucks someplace, outside Sarrah's, or any number of other places around Louisville and I would talk. One of the first thoughts I recall having about the matter was the very different nature of the discussion of the moral nature of gay marriage and the discussion of the legal nature of gay marriage. I'm still not sure how closely it is the government's job to reflect morality as opposed to order.
Still, and to the end of putting aside the moral nature of the issue, the questions arrose: what is marriage exactly, and is it by it's very nature a right? Becasue if it is in fact a given right--an unalienable right, as they say--then I tend to find very little legal ground against it being applied to all people, in so far as it is deemed reasonable. (Which is a vague, but perhaps necessary, phrase?) Still, I find the institution of marriage at it's core to be as very much religious as it is very much political. As it applies to religion, why should marriage be a right? Would it not be proper to deny gay individuals marriage on the grounds that it is not an institution that applies to them, at it's core? At the same time, it would be short-sighted to ignore the social aspects, and even more in error to ignore the legal ones.
With all of this in mind I came to ponder the validity of legalized marriage within our government, and, as mentioned above, arrived at possibilities, some of which indicated that it was, in fact, not valid at all.
Also as I said above, these are just ideas that I've been thinking about and not anything that I am yet to willingly claim.
and to break out of all that proper grammer sentance-structuring and intellectualizing, frankly, this will get more comments. :)