Monday, 18 February 2013

Against (state supported) Marriage

Marriage is a religious institution, and should be left to religious institutions. The state should provide a contract for everyone that offers a bundle of benefits and burdens to those who decide to live together. The advantages of such a policy would be multiple: to begin with no individual would be discriminated. The contract, as any contract, can be validly concluded by any party -- male, female, trans-sex etc... the state provides a default legal instrument to organise a complex long-term partnership; that contract should make obligations and benefits clear, and if well done, should prevent as much as possible litigation between the two parties, even when the contract comes to an end.

Individuals could still decide to marry in a church. Religions in this case would have the burden of organising that ceremony which would only have a symbolic value, but no legal value whatsoever. Religions would also have the burden of explaining to people why they are not eligible in some cases. In this sense, religions would be accountable to them. They would owe an explanation. And faithfuls would have to decide whether to belong to a church that openly discriminate them. Take for instance catholic gays. There is no point in forcing the church to accept gay marriage; and there may not be a point to be a catholic gay, up to them to decide.