Washington State has voted to allow same-sex marriage, marriage equality, whatever you want to call it. Similar referenda passed in Maine and Maryland and in Minnesota an initiative to put in place a constitutional amendment to ban SSM failed.
Some may say that it’s all a matter of labels and labels aren’t real and it’s real rights that matter and rights are not subject to or change by the passage or repeal of a law. They are Platonic objects or something.
That is an enlightened view, so you can figure the odds how far that will get you in the society we have to live in. People think in symbols and live by labels, they base laws on those labels and define them in those terms, so they really aren’t so trivial when it comes to living under them.
Platonic object don’t exist. The only rights that matter are the ones you can exert.
One may also say that this shouldn’t be matter of a government doing one thing or the other, that government has no role in this. This argument is valid only in Oughtland. But here in Izland, that debate is moot.
Government gives itself a role, and people insist on that role existing, when it starts enforcing this stuff, but that is bound to happen – you can’t do any of this stuff without government enforcing the [now very shaky and vague] marriage contract.
These are the practical consequences for me. My partner and I live in Washington. Now we can get legally married. That means that as soon as DOMA is repealed at the federal level, I can add him to my federal job-connected medical insurance, which will save us $400/month. Also now he can survive me as a spouse, so that when we start collecting my military and civilian pensions, he can continue receiving them if I pre-decease him, where before he would have had no status and the payments would have stopped and left him nothing.
These are not small matters for us. And whatever the philosophical niceties may be, what matters to us is how the statute reads and how it is applied.
- The Woman Card - May 2, 2016
- Frat boy bachelorettes and the invasion of gay bars - April 15, 2016
- “Not my kid….” - February 22, 2016