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  • From Marriage to a Mere Contract

    This morning the Iowa Supreme Court became the fourth state supreme court to redefine marriage to include same-sex couples. Justifying his decision Iowa Supreme Court Justice Mark Cady invoked his court’s 1839 decision which struck down slavery laws. Heritage’s Matthew Spalding addressed the specious argument back in 2003:

    The argument of these judges is that homosexual “marriage” is simply the extension of privileges to a discriminated class in the name of civil rights. The parallel is made to the Supreme Court’s striking down, as instances of arbitrary and invidious discrimination, statutes that had been drawn according to race, in particular laws against interracial marriage.

    But this analogy does not work. The first court faced with this argument as the ground used to justify same-sex “marriage” made the obvious point: “in commonsense and in a constitutional sense, there is a clear distinction between a marital restriction based merely upon race and one based upon the fundamental difference in sex.”

    What is happening is no minor adjustment, a slight change in degree that just extends benefits or rights to a larger class, but a substantive change in the essence of the institution. It does not expand marriage; it alters its core meaning, for to redefine marriage so that it is not intrinsically related to the relationship between fathers, mothers, and children formally severs the institution from its nature and purpose.

    Expanding marriage supposedly to make it more inclusive, no matter what we call the new arrangement, necessarily ends marriage as we now know it by remaking the institution into something different: a mere contract between any two individuals.

    Posted in Culture [slideshow_deploy]

    33 Responses to From Marriage to a Mere Contract

    1. Carol, LI, NY says:

      How long we it take before someone says they want to marry their monkey ?…or two women??…or men?

      Civil unions should be allowed, but, to call it a "marriage" is insane. Where is this society headed? Disgraceful behavior.

    2. Bob Bowser, Portsmou says:

      First, I support the fact that the Government apply its rules equally to all people. I live in a state, whose motto is "Live free of Die" and I don't believe Government should segregate out people and tell them how to live their lives.

      But, more importantly the thinking expressed in this quote and the title of this article is exactly backwards.

      The legal institution of marriage did not create love and commitment between people. Love and commitment are human traits and the legal definition of marriage is but a grey, shallow reflection of this universal human drive and need.

      A law can never change the love I feel for my wife or children, or the commitment I have to my family. My commitment to my wife is based on things beyond the realm of law, and no extension or modification to a legal rule can or will change that. Nor, can a law reduce the commitment of a gay couple to each other. If the law had this power, then divorce would be a rare anomaly.

      Let me put it another way. The fact that marriage or civil unions are legal in all the states in New England has not in any way reduced what marriage means to me.

      It is absurd to argue that a ruling like this adds or detracts from any ones commitment to marriage.

      Commitment and love between couples, straight or gay, is not enhanced or reduced by a piece of paper from a Government clerk. Under the law marriage is and will always be just a contract. The real meaning of marriage comes from sources other then the state and beyond the reach of law.

      I think the flaw in this whole argument is thinking that the institutions of man can in any way augment or detract from the contents of a heart or soul.

    3. Charlie, Detroit, MI says:

      => Carol…

      I couldn't agree more. If we make an exception now, where does it end? Great points, Carol.

      We are messing with God's design and there isn't anything good that can possibly come from allowing homosexual marriage.

      Please God, have mercy on us and our nation…

    4. Jeff, San Francisco says:

      It astonishes me that neither Mr. Spalding nor Carol have bothered to read the Iowa decision, which addresses and refutes all the truly specious (and bigoted) arguments that are advanced by proponents of discrimination against gay men and lesbians. Apparently, their hatred of gay people blinds them both to the fact that there are THOUSANDS of gay families out there in which gay people are raising prefectly happy and well-adjusted children–apparently, they have no interest in the well-being of those families. And it astonishes me that the success of opposite-sex marriage is never discussed when this issue arises–a 50% divorce rate suggests proponents of heterosexual marriage ignore the beam in their own eye . . .

    5. Lee, Cedar Rapids says:

      People are galvanizing and hopefully we can have this reversed within a few weeks. There are many legal avenues and of course the vast majority of voters will support a complete ban on homosexual 'marriages'. This ruling by the liberal activist judges will not last very long, you can be assured.

    6. Stirling, Huntingdon says:

      The term "Marriage" is more important to those who have religous beliefs then to those who just want to use it for political means. The problem the "Left" has (and will always have) is that "In God's eyes," this will never be seen as legitimate. No matter what the government does they can not change our core beliefs that it's God and not the government that gives us life.

    7. James, Atascadero, C says:

      Gay activists have once again succeeded in their incrimental assault on the traditional values that have defined our culture for hundreds of years. By floating the canard of supposed civil rights-era "discrimination", and with the aid of sympathetic jurists, they have chipped away at another state's definition of marriage.

      In our post civil rights society, no one wants to be linked with the social injustices of the past. The homosexual community has effectively piggy-tailed themselves onto the legitimate discrimination claims of people of color, women, the disabled, and various religious practitioners. The fact of the matter is that the U.S. Supreme Court has ruled, in the past, that homosexuals do NOT comprise a true "discrete and insular minority", but rather, that they constitute a "behavior based" minority. Regardless of years of research, there has never been a biological cause, or a "gay" gene identified.

      There IS evidence, however, that the behaviors commen among this "minority" are very dangerous and destructive. It is well known among demographers and sociologists that, as a group, homosexual couples have a markedly higher rate of suicide, domestic violence, clinical depression, alcohol and substance dependency and abuse.

      By granting homosexual couples the "right" to marry, our society is further weakening the honorable institution that is so very important to the strength, and ultimately the survival, of our nation.

    8. Chrissy Naples, Flo says:

      Marriage defined in the American Dictionary of the English Language Noah Webster 1828 states: The act of uniting a man and woman for life; wedlock; the legal union of a man and woman for life. Marriage is a contract both civil and religious, by which the parties engage to live together in mutual affection and fidelity, till death shall separate them. Marriage was instituted by God himself for the purpose of preventing the promiscuous intercourse of the sexes, for promoting domestic felicity, and for securing the maintenance and education of children.

    9. Dave, Canton, MI says:

      Oh PLEASE!

      We do not want to destroy society.*

      We make up less than 15% of society.

      You people squirt out more spawn then you can care for. You people have destroyed marriage with your divorce rates, child abuse, spouse abuse and hypocracy.

      YOU people have no right to judge.

      *Gentrify it maybe, but not destroy it.

    10. Philip, San Francisc says:

      Chrissy: Mirriam-Webster includes the definition of 'Marriage' as follows: "b. the state of being united to a person of the same sex in a relationship like that of a traditional marriage." Since I've found a popular source of information that includes a definition of Marriage to suit my liking, does that mean that everyone must now agree with me?

    11. Abigail, Brooklyn, N says:

      Stirling – there are plenty of Christian churches, including the United Church of Christ and the Universalist Unitarians, who believe that gays and lesbians ought to have the right to marry. Who are you to say that your interpretation of Christianity is more valid than ours?

      Bob Bowser – thank you for your insightful comments.

      James – have you heard of equality and equal rights under the law? That's an *American* tradition. Have you heard of separation of Church and State? When puritanical christian fundamentalists suggest that we 'protect the definition of marriage', they're discriminating against others and being UNAMERICAN. They have a right to place their religious beliefs before their political beliefs; but lets be clear about which traditions are which. Some of us believe that it's more important to be American and support equal protection under the law, than to be busy bodies in other people's business and tell them what they can and can't do regarding loving relationships.

    12. Pingback: Iowa Is Third State to Allow Gay “Marriage” | Caffeinated Thoughts

    13. Pingback: Unconstitutional- Ban on Same-sex Marriage | The Conservative Way

    14. John Thinkwright, So says:

      A reality today is that a program is afoot to rid Western Civilization of all Judeo-Christian morality, and in its place install a “new”morality. The “new” morality is the morality devised by our new masters. Who are our masters? Thomas Sowell calls our masters, ‘The anointed.’ Typically the anointed are lawyers, professors, judges, politicians, and powerful political appointees. The attempt to destroy Prop 8 is really an attack by the anointed on 1. the family and 2. religion, and 3.the 10 Commandments. Morality based on The Commandments is to be replaced by the morality of FDR, Russell, Mead, Freud, Rorty, Kinsey, and Weber.

      Here is a passage from the e-book ‘Bye-Bye Sweet Liberty that expands on the previous statement:

      “Family, we were told back in the 50s, was no longer relevant. This was an archaic idea that had to be discarded. We (students in sociology classes) were not told how they arrived at this grand theory, nor whether it had been tested and proven, but the grand-wizard-of-sociology had said it was true, so the sociologists all went out and spread the message. We were not told that other societies, going back to the start of recorded time, had tested this hypothesis and had reaped negative results each time. We were not told that Mssrs. A. Hitler and J. Stalin pushed this same concept with the full power of the state behind them. Both of these very powerful gentlemen had to give up too. Even various Israeli kibbutzes(kibbutz is a small commune) were set up in a way that the children were to be raised by the kibbutz (It takes a village to raise a child.) and not by their parents. The kibbutz has almost wholly been abandoned.

      Currently we are being told that family is important, after all, but that there is more than one way of defining a family. (Here we go again.)

      When a theory of true science fails, it makes the front page of every newspaper in the world. Remember cold fusion?(Cold fusion was a hoax originated at the University of Utah in the late 1980s. It stated that energy as generated by the sun(fusion energy) could be generated here on earth, at room temperature in simple, cheap equipment. The perpetrators, Fleishmann and Pons were physicists and professors at the university. In the way of true science, their claims were tested and found impossible to duplicate. They were quickly denounced (as they deserved to be), and, for all I know,Mssrs. F and P are now occupied as chefs in the French Foreign Legion. Such denouncements are totally unheard of in the social “sciences” When a theory of sociology fails, you never hear about it. No press conference was ever called by the grand-wizard-of-sociology to announce that all his previous statements against the family

      were untrue and that a new dogma, the al-depends-on-how-youdefine-it-family, was being brought into the game instead.”

      please visit the Free Republic web site and find a post titled 'Reinventing Morality [the enemies of liberty are busy]'—-JWThinkwright

    15. Pete says:

      Same sex marriage is no more marriage than a drag queen is a woman. It may have the name marriage but that's as far as it goes. Marriage has always been and forever shall be between a man and a woman in the presence of God. Marriage is a religious institution first and a civil contract second and same sex marriage is literally a joke.

    16. Yolanda, Georgia says:

      If you are all so worried about "marriage" as a religious rite, then why not start treating it like one? The divorce rate is now over 50%, so I don't think that putting homosexuals in the marriage category would hurt anything.

    17. mike baker Dallas Ce says:

      If this was about rights, it could've been done within existing laws using contracts. This is about forcing minority insecurities on others.

    18. Dale STL says:

      May I remind those who are in favor of same-sex marriage that God clearly defined marriage. And we were founded as a Christian nation…Our government will not work with out moral people.

      The Constitution was designed with basic morallity as part of the package.

      In your desire to have equality you are destroying the nation for self centered satsifacton. Those of the next generation will suffer because of your enlightenment. The destruction of marriage is the distruction of Western civilizaton.

      May God have mercy on this once God fearing great nation. His hand of mercy will not remain on a people that mock him.

    19. RANDY, WAYOUTWEST says:





    20. Ross, Bradenton, F says:

      The only way that majority of the radical liberal laws have been sewn in the fabric of our American culture has been through liberal judges in our federal court system dictating legislation from the bench. This has happened because the majority of the American voters would not have voted for such radical changes on moral grounds reflecting our national christian values. Now state Supreme Courts are doing the same.

      The time has come to reread 'The Rise and Fall of the Roman Empire'. It a road map to national destruction worthy of reading, reflection, and discussion.

      The last time I heard, we were still a Representative Republic(barely). Our representatives at all levels are paid to make laws reflecting American values and mores. Judges are only to interpret those law when challenged in a court of law, not writing laws from the bench. It is time for our overpaid representatives to reel in these out-of-control court systems through legislation thoughout this great land. Batuimus!

    21. Bill, Forney, TX says:

      James in CA & Mike in Dallas make good points. If Civil Unions can accomplish the same legal purposes that proponents of gay marriage seek than why not end the discussion at Civil Unions? In the past, the word marriage was an obvious reference to the nucleus of the family – a man and a woman. You can no more change its definition than you can "female" or "negro".

      Marriages may have begun as religious unions but were also seen as the fundamental building block of a stable society. Our country was set up with encouraging (or even promoting) this in mind. Any other arrangement involving the raising of childern from its outset requires a third party (since a man/man of woman/woman relation cannot produce a child) and can present other ramifications since a natural parent is out of this mix. Society has an interest in the well-being of children, since they must be the responsible contributors to future building blocks. The long-term survival of a society is dependent upon stable blocks.

      While some same-sex unions with adopted children can produce loving families, they cannot nurture children as successfully as the traditional loving family. In the former, a child is only exposed to parents of a single sex. One only need look at studies on the results of raising children by single parents.

      The decision of the court to lessen the importance of the traditional family only serves to undermine further the strength of our society. I believe we should continue to promote the formation of the strongest building blocks for our nation. Divorce already undermines this. Irresponsibility leading to single-parent families already undermines this. While same-sex Civil Unions may provide more stable building blocks than these two, they should not become our foundation. To Bob in NH's point, let marriage be marriage and civil unions be civil unions.

    22. Lynn, Pennslyvania says:

      God clearly defines Marriage as between a Man and a Woman, I don't care how you look at it, try to redifine it or twist it.

      Alot of people, Washington included, twist our laws and The Constitution to satisfy their own need and that's what's happened here with same sex marriage.

      What pushes them ahead, that there are plenty of Bleeding Heart Sympathizers for a support base. And what's more, with "Obambi" and the Dems in control, we conservatives can only voice our opinon.

      Bambi and the Dems sympathize with "special interest groups" for one reason and one reason only, it's called "re-election"!

      Despite him, I stand proud to say, We were founded on "One Nation Under God", it's where I and my family stand and will stay forever. I will NOT Debate my Reasoning or be coersed into changing my mind!

      God Bless Us and May He have Mercy on us & the America I Remember.

    23. Mary, Atlanta says:

      Marriage has ALWAYS been just a contract in the eyes of the government. Anyone who thinks otherwise is clearly not familiar with the history of marriage, which used to be nothing more than an exchange of property and money.

      At any rate, it's laughable that Britney Spears can get married and divorced within a 72 hour period and that's "sacred" but two men or women who want to pledge lifelong love and fidelity to each other are the ones destroying the sanctity of marriage.

    24. Pingback: Monday afternoon links - Maggie's Farm

    25. Barb -mn says:

      If they make it an issue to be married in Christian churches, and the churches don't comply(which they shouldn't if they're doing God's Will), the government will force churches to close down.

    26. Alec, Knoxville, TN says:

      The amazing thing that I see here in these comments is how selfish the homosexual part of our society is. To be accepted at what cause???? To affirm a LIFESTYLE??? Well pat yourselves on the back, then. You are affirmed as a lifestyle choice. Do you really need marriage to be complete and compete in this world, what’s next? Cloning to carry on the Bloodline?
      “Have you not read that He who created them at the beginning ‘created them male and female,’ and said, ‘For this reason a man shall leave his father and mother and be joined to his wife, and the two shall become one flesh’? So then, they are no longer two but one flesh. Therefore what God has joined together, let not man separate.”
      Do you really think that a same sex marriage fits this criteria set by Jehovah?
      Is marriage a SACRED UNION between MAN and WOMAN, emphatically, YES! However, if two men or two women want to feel better about themselves and play house by getting hitched, why stop them? It is not recognized by the one that counts. We, even those that are in “same sex marriages”, living in SIN – all know that it is a farce and a blasphemy toward the true meaning; we know it is also a relationship that cannot proceed past one generation. There are no blood relations in these pseudo-marriages to continue further than death of the partners.
      There is also no reason to think that marriage is an affirmation of Love between two people, it never has been. (Check history) Many marriages were not out of Love and this is why most marriages fail. If you think that it is based on legalese then you are missing the boat. In today’s society marriage is becoming the complete opposite of what marriage truly is – an affirmation of where one came from and who their family is; Who their ancestors were and relations to blood relatives. You didn’t have to carry papers around to prove it, I guess now you will have to. So much for freedom.
      That is the Real difference between a Man and Woman Marriage and you cannot change that.

      Marriage was designed for procreation and one knowing where they came from with inheritance to lands and blood ties.
      Imagine all of the problems that this will cause for the children of these relationships, when a child of a homosexual partnership (marriage or not) has to battle their inheritance in court, anybody will be able to claim an inheritance because there is no blood family to prove the relationship.(Check historical facts in Greece when this took place.) It is bad enough already in the courts, with true blood-ties. Now you want to totally rely on the courts to affirm ones lifestyle? Do you see how it gets complicated?
      Probably not because of the selfishness of our homosexual brethren.

      To finish

      Marriage may be recognized here on earth…..We must also remember that in HEAVEN – which is our goal it is not.
      Matthew 22:30 – Mark 12:35 – Luke 20:35
      “For in the resurrection they neither marry nor are given in marriage, but are like angels of God in heaven.”
      There will be no need for marriage in Heaven, because all will be fulfilled and no need to continue the race by means of birth.

      And I say to you, what Jesus said -Matthew 22:29- to the Sadduccees, “that you know neither the scriptures or the power of GOD.”
      To claim that OTHER denominations of Churches are OK with “same sex marriage” just affirms that it is a false church that you are quoting and not a church that teaches the true Gospel of Jesus Christ or His Commandments. God will not be mocked.

      Let him who is taught the word share in all good things with him who teaches. Do not be deceived, God is not mocked; for whatever a man (or woman)sows, that he will also reap. For he who sows to his flesh will of the flesh reap corruption, but he who sows to the Spirit will of the Spirit reap everlasting life.

    27. Boyd66 says:

      First let me say The Sin of Homosexuality is no worse than any other sin God talks about in the bible, the only difference is that the Homosexual Crowd wants there's to be legal…..

      Perilous Times and Perilous Men

      1 But know this, that in the last days perilous times will come: 2 For men will be lovers of themselves, lovers of money, boasters, proud, blasphemers, disobedient to parents, unthankful, unholy, 3 unloving, unforgiving, slanderers, without self-control, brutal, despisers of good, 4 traitors, headstrong, haughty, lovers of pleasure rather than lovers of God, 5 having a form of godliness but denying its power. And from such people turn away! 6 For of this sort are those who creep into households and make captives of gullible women loaded down with sins, led away by various lusts, 7 always learning and never able to come to the knowledge of the truth. 8 Now as Jannes and Jambres resisted Moses, so do these also resist the truth: men of corrupt minds, disapproved concerning the faith; 9 but they will progress no further, for their folly will be manifest to all, as theirs also was.

      The Man of God and the Word of God

    28. Hank, Tyler Texas says:

      Gee, didn't know so many people have a direct line to God. Call it a marriage, call it a civil union, call it two dudes professing their love; when it's all said and done it only has as much impact on your life as you let it. I'm glad for any two people that find something in each other that makes them want to spend the rest of their lives together.

    29. Pingback: Unconstitutional- Ban on Same-sex Marriage | Team Biff

    30. zainul abedin Bangla says:

      I am Zainul Abedin from Bangladesh.I want a contract female who marry me.She send me a legal Italian paper,i pay amount what she want.

    31. CG, NJ says:

      –And we were founded as a Christian nation…– Incorrect

    32. CG, NJ says:

      –You are affirmed as a lifestyle choice– Not a choice

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