Thursday, March 16, 2006

One Is Enough

The slippery slope is back.

Katherine Kersten, writing in the Minneapolis Star Tribune, claims that once same-sex marriage is allowed, that will lead to polygamy.

If “one man-one woman” is a discriminatory limitation on the choice of a life partner, on what grounds can the state logically restrict marriage to two people? The fact is, once you adopt same-sex marriage — legally changing the standard for marriage from one-man, one-woman to a “committed relationship” — there is no principled way to prevent its extension to polygamy or other forms of “plural marriage” or partnership.

Sorry, I’m not buying it. People can make all the arguments they want for or against polygamy (and since it’s rampant in the Bible, I’m kind of surprised the Religious Reich isn’t lobbying for it), but putting it on the same plane as gay marriage is comparing apples to bowling balls. People do not choose to be gay, and falling in love and wanting to make a commitment to another person who happens to be of the same gender is not the same as having two or three wives — or husbands, if you saw Paint Your Wagon. Polygamy is a conscious choice, and just like any contract, you can limit the number of people engaged in said contract. That’s not the same as discriminating against the innate qualities of the people engaged in the contract.

It’s not been that long since the Supreme Court invalidated the laws in several states banning interracial marriage, laws that were put on the books because of the same arguments used against same-sex marriage: if blacks can marry whites, what’s next? It was bullshit then, it’s bullshit now, and the mass hysteria of the consequences exist only in the fevered minds of the sex-obsessed…and certain senators from Pennsylvania.