I expect that I may receive some flak about this but this is about rights not morals. Morals are an entirely different issue for which I have a very strong opinion. We live in a Nation ruled (it is said) by a Constitution. If that is so we must accept and defend the rights of those with whom we may even adamantly disagree.
Without such wiliness to defend the right of others to practice those things I even consider abominable I am no better than any other tyranny at any time one desires to name in history. Choose-Nebuchadnezzar? Antiochus Epiphenes? One of the Caesars or Genghis Khan. Stalin, Hitler, Pol Pot? They all limited the freedoms of groups they were offended by.
NO Let God Forbid. There is no reason to withhold a right because we may be offended. If two consenting adults choose to call themselves married then there is no reason they should be forbidden from doing so.
I would gladly make the argument that the government has no business being involved in marriage at all. For hundreds of years the church handled all matters of marriage, birth and death. If one was not a member one came under common law and then the sate would be involved in a very limited fashion. Here is an editorial from The Daily Bell™:
Democracy and Gay Marriages
Marriages ought to be a matter of contract and not based on any myth or superstition. Folks should not be interfered with if they want to form a family union, however it is configured, so long as it isn’t some kind of criminal gang.
What I do find odd is for the White House to butt in here, requesting that the US Supreme Court invalidate various state statutes to conform to the doctrine of the ruling party or the president. In the case of President Obama, an avowed champion o f democracy in numerous areas – whereby as far as he is concerned, majority rule may violate individual property or contractual rights (so that, for example, he supports imposing all kinds of burdens such as various taxes) on everyone because the majority agrees – the demand that the court uphold the ban on gay marriages would appear to be perfectly acceptable to him if the majority in a state, such as California, so decides. But, alas, democracy must yield when Obama so wishes.
Democrats, be they lower or upper case types, often do not get it: If you believe that what the majority agrees to should be the law, you have no cause for complaint when insidious measures get passed in various elections in various jurisdictions. Majority rule means just that, rule by the will of the majority. If you think there are exceptions – as even the US Supreme Court has said there are and as most sane people would agree – you need to show why. The best case for them would provide support from the political doctrine of natural individual human rights. So that if everyone has a right to speak his or her mind, no majority would be authorized to shut us up no matter how outrageous our ideas happen to be. And there are other equally well-established individual rights that no majority ought to be authorized to breach. So, yes, whom one chooses to marry if all parties agree (remember polygamy!) may not be subject to interference by a majority or its representatives. Don’t like it but live with it, if you have any respect for the right to individual liberty!
But then do not impose on people measures, laws, regulations, etc., they find morally or otherwise objectionable unless these amount to protecting individual rights! But it doesn’t seem to me at all that Mr. Obama and his ideological cohorts have any firm commitment to such individual rights, only to some select ones that happen to suit their pragmatic frame of mind. In other words, they are essentially committed to a fascistic type of “legal” order wherein those who happen to sit atop the government get to tell everyone else what goes.
And they used to fancy the US a free country! Go figure.
Tibor Machan is a member of the Advisory Board for The Foundation for the Advancement of Free-Market Thinking (FAFMT) and the R. C. Hoiles Professor of Business Ethics & Free Enterprise at the Argyros School of Business & Economics, Chapman University in Orange, CA.