February 6, 2007
Marriage is about procreation, you say? Okay then; why not put your money where your mouth is, so to speak?
The Washington Defense of Marriage Alliance seeks to defend equal marriage in this state by challenging the Washington Supreme Court’s ruling on Andersen v. King County. This decision, given in July 2006, declared that a “legitimate state interest” allows the Legislature to limit marriage to those couples able to have and raise children together. Because of this “legitimate state interest,” it is permissible to bar same-sex couples from legal marriage.
The way we are challenging Andersen is unusual: using the initiative, we are working to put the Court’s ruling into law. We will do this through three initiatives. The first would make procreation a requirement for legal marriage. The second would prohibit divorce or legal separation when there are children. The third would make the act of having a child together the legal equivalent of a marriage ceremony.
Absurd? Very. But there is a rational basis for this absurdity. By floating the initiatives, we hope to prompt discussion about the many misguided assumptions which make up the Andersen ruling. By getting the initiatives passed, we hope the Supreme Court will strike them down as unconstitional and thus weaken Andersen itself. And at the very least, it should be good fun to see the social conservatives who have long screamed that marriage exists for the sole purpose of procreation be forced to choke on their own rhetoric.
Pam: “I love it. Take the DOMA laws and extend them to their illogical, immoral, invasive extreme.”
Ann: “The group even has a sweet anti-gay name! This is a great rhetorical argument against the point of view that the primary purpose of marriage is to create children, therefore gay couples shouldn’t be granted the right.”
Ann also brings up the point that “Most gay-rights supporters in the state say they’re unlikely to support the parody measure, saying ‘I don’t think anybody in the gay community wants to take someone else’s rights away,'” and that “The antis don’t really have a sense of humor, and I can see them trotting this out as proof that gay men and lesbians really do want to take away YOUR rights as a good, upstanding, heterosexual Christian citizen.” However, if this gets even just a few people to reconsider their stance against same-sex marriage, I think it will have been worth it.