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Same-sex marriage – the problem is heterosexuals April 3, 2013

Posted by Tomboktu in LGBT Rights.

Over in Washington the US Supreme Court has heard oral arguments in two cases concerning same-sex marriage. Unlike the Irish Supreme Court (indeed, any Irish court), the documents in cases are routinely made available.

Among the parties making arguments is a group of members of the US House of Representatives. Their lawyer is Paul Clement, a former Solicitor General (under George W Bush). The written Brief he filed before the Court has some argument that is, well, novel.

On page 21:

There is a unique relationship between marriage and procreation that stems from marriage’s origins as a means to address the tendency of opposite-sex relationships to produce unintended and unplanned offspring. There is nothing irrational about declining to extend marriage to same-sex relationships that, whatever their other similarities to opposite-sex relationships, simply do not share that same tendency.

On page 44:

The link between procreation and marriage itself reflects a unique social difficulty with opposite-sex couples that is not present with same-sex couples — namely, the undeniable and distinct tendency of opposite-sex relationships to produce unplanned and unintended pregnancies.

On pages 45 and 46:

It is no exaggeration to say that the institution of marriage was a direct response to the unique tendency of opposite-sex relationships to produce unplanned and unintended offspring.

Although much has changed over the years, the biological fact that opposite-sex relationships have a unique tendency to produce unplanned and unintended offspring has not. While medical advances, and the amendment of adoption laws through the democratic process, have made it possible for same-sex couples to raise children, substantial advance planning is required. Only opposite-sex relationships have the tendency to produce children without such advance planning (indeed, especially without advance planning). Thus, the traditional definition of marriage remains society’s rational response to this unique tendency of opposite-sex relationships. And in light of that understanding of marriage, it is perfectly rational not to define as marriage, or extend the benefits of marriage to, other relationships that, whatever their other similarities, simply do not have the same tendency to produce unplanned and potentially unwanted children.

Wow. Just: wow.

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1. EWI - April 3, 2013

unplanned and unintended offspring

Bastards. This, of course, is argued because same-sex partners can have offspring through “planning and intention” with third parties.


WorldbyStorm - April 4, 2013

It’s amazing stuff, really easy to show how illogical these arguments of those opposed to same-sex marriage are and yet they don’t seem to care.


eamonncork - April 4, 2013

I think that submission is unfair. A lot of Straights are perfectly normal people who simply want to get married in order to demonstrate their long term commitment to each other. I’ve met quite a few Straight people over the years and this demonisation of them as promiscuous and irresponsible is very unfair. I’m sure the majority of them do their best to raise their children in a decent fashion and are a credit to the institution of marriage. They need our understanding.


2. EWI - April 3, 2013

Of course, all this founders on the rock of heterosexual relationships where one or both is sterile, on contraception etc.


WorldbyStorm - April 4, 2013

Age too.


3. doctorfive - April 3, 2013

Susan Phillips undid a fair amount of carefully crafted PR strawmen on Primetime last night. She’s far too honest for religious right activism.


4. Marriage: Lost in Translation | Once Written - April 5, 2013

[...] Same-sex marriage – the problem is heterosexuals (cedarlounge.wordpress.com) [...]


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