This post was originally removed. To be honest, I don’t even remember why. Likely it is because my opinion has changed.
Back in 2008, I was a bit of a left wing nut. I had not yet figured out that we are all blinded by our world view. So to update this post let me just say the following…
- I believe that marriage is a religious act. Period.
- The government should in no way be involved, absolute separation between church and state.
- No state should issue, Marriage Licenses. When did we as the people require permission from the nanny state. Marriage Certificates are a different matter, that state an event after the fact. Who they are issued by is up to debate provided they are not “government”.
- The only reason the nanny state wants to be involved with marriage is due to tax collection, which would make it a label law, and therefore likely unfair at least to singles.
Controversy in the USA
Some groups and individuals believe that the requirement to obtain a marriage license is unnecessary or immoral. The Libertarian Party, for instance, believes that marriage should be a matter of personal liberty, not requiring permission from the state. Individuals that align with this libertarian stance argue that marriage is a right, and that by allowing the state to exercise control over marriage, it falsely presupposes that we merely have the privilege, not the right, to marry. As an example of a right (as opposed to a privilege), those that are born in the US receive a birth certificate (certifying that they have been born), not a birth license (which would give them license so they could be born). Some Christian groups also argue that a marriage is a contract between a man and a woman presided over by God, so no authorization from the state is required. Some US states have started citing the state specifically as a party in the marriage contract which is seen by some as an infringement.
Marriage licenses have also been the subject of controversy for affected minority groups. California’s Proposition 8 has been the subject of heavy criticism by advocates of same-sex marriage, including the lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender (LGBT) community whose ability to marry is often limited by the aforementioned state intervention. This changed on June 26, 2015, with the Supreme Court decision in Obergefell v. Hodges. However, the state and federal intervention still continues to limit the ability of members of other minority religious groups from marrying according to the dictates of their religious tenets, as is the case with Islamic polygamy, for example. Polyamorous and polyandrous marriages are, likewise, still prohibited.
In October 2009, Keith Bardwell, a Louisiana justice of the peace, refused to issue a marriage license to an interracial couple, prompting civil liberties groups, such as the NAACP and ACLU, to call for his resignation or firing. Bardwell resigned his office on November 3.
In the state of Pennsylvania, self-uniting marriage licenses are available which require only the signatures of the bride and groom and witnesses. Although this is an accommodation for a Quaker wedding, any couple is able to apply for it. – Wikipedia ( https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Marriage_license#History )
Original Post Follows: (Found later)
My wife and I are cerebrating our 16th wedding anniversary on the 23rd this month. As I look back over the years, I enjoy the memories of good times, and I must admit, now that time has past, enjoy remembering times that were not so good, because I had her with me.
I remember driving across this great country of Canada, way more then once, talking to her as we drove from festival to festival selling our arts and crafts to make our way in life. We met every kind of person that defines multicultural Canada, and enjoyed the company of every one of them. We spent almost thirteen years on the roads of Canada, from Toronto where I was born in a born-again Christian family, to Vancouver which we call home.
We have had hard times from our home burning down, to loosing our only daughter at birth. But regardless of all those things that can go wrong, I would not trade a moment of them to do it alone.
I think about all our friends that were couples when we met, including my own godfather, that are no longer together, and remember that they said we were to young, that we would never last. In fact, it took us two years to get married, prevented from doing so by the Crown. (My wife was sixteen when we met.)
Although I can understand the age of majority, and do not disagree with it, perhaps in part of being a father of a sixteen year old myself, I totally understand the feelings of anyone who is prevented from marrying the one they love.
Being the father of four boys is an experiment in human rights, the right to sanity comes first to mind. It also makes you take a hard look at things you might not normally never think about, like what this country is going to be like when they have kids of their own.
I was raised in loving home, my parents are both Christians who have given me the image of what a marriage should be like. The respect my mother has for my father impresses me as much as my father’s for her. My parents marriage represents the traditional family image that has become the banner of an ideal. My own is successful because of what they have taught me, that I believe without a doubt.
I hope that all my sons will have successful partnerships like my wife and I have, and their grandparents before them. Some things you can only teach by example, tolerance being one of them, all the words in the world are useless unless actions speak louder then them.
My grandmother did not have to worry about certain things that her grandmother did, such as if she had remarried after being widowed, she would have lost the rights to the farm to her new husband if he divorces her.
My wife knows that both of us are equal under the law, but also because our marriage is truly a partnership, it was part of the oath in our hearts when we were married.
Her mother who lost all rights to my father-in-law’s estate when he died, had no such luck. She was unaware of the meaning of marriage, and therefore lost the treasure it holds. Not only monetary value, but also heart value. She learned the hard way that relationships that come cheap in the heart, actually cost more.
Watching the Aurora Borealis as well traveled on highway one, or skipping stones across a crystal clear lake in Northern Ontario, would have had less value to me if not for the fact that it was one small part of a greater treasure, a life long partnership. I believe that everyone has a right to that.
My wife and I as Canadians also have a right to being left alone. (Although hard to come by with kids…) We have the right not to be bothered by the single seen, stating that we are married is enough, or should be, to be left alone to ourselves, by those that are truly alone. Those, who I hope, seek that which we have. Having the right to a private relationship is something that we should not take for granted here in Canada, because some of us, are being threaten to have that, and all that I have mentioned, taken away.
It seems the right wing conservative government that is in power thinks that because I was raised in a Christian home, live in an average place, have kids, voted for them. I didn’t. Nor did I ask them to treat people different then me, to take away from them what I have in the name of tradition. I love my wife, and I greatly value our marriage, I hope that anyone who has the chance to get what I have takes it, whether they are heterosexual or not. No one has the right to take what I have away from anyone.
Some of Canada’s Conservatives want to again enter into the ended debate over same sex marriage. Hopefully cooler heads will prevail.Click here for reuse options!
Copyright 2008 Dan Wolfe
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