Jane Galt on gay marriage

Jane Galt has kicked off an enormous discussion on gay marriage. She's the typical two-handed economist: "On the one hand, this... on the other hand, that..."

I think there's a much simpler solution:

The answer, from my perspective, is to separate the legal benefits of marriage from the cultural/religious institution.

Anti-gay marriage types say that gay marriage destroys the meaning of marriage. This may be true in some people's views, but gay couples certainly deserve equal rights with respect to taxes, next of kin issues, inheritance, etc. Civil unions accomplish this, if you give them all of the legal rights of marriage. How an anyone but the most right-wing bigot oppose that? You solve the whole problem by just not calling it "marriage."

HT: Instapundit.

1 comment:

Josh said...

Absolutely true, and a point that many homosexual couples have been making for years. Naturally, they have every right to expect equal protection under the law. BUT, the problem is more than merely a semantic one. The word "marriage" carries with it an undeniable cultural weight--one that, true, cannot be discretely defined or quantified--but the attractiveness of marriage to any couple may rest in its status as an institution. The economic/legal benefits are all well and good, but to ask gays to cede the word "marriage" to heteros is just another form of discrimination. And, in a larger sense, it would not be right to do so, as "marriage" does not in itself connote hetero relationships. No one, to my knowledge, has ever authoritatively proven that the word means what the Right apparently thinks it means.

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