Same-Sex Marriage Nuance

From David French:

The language surrounding the same-sex marraige debate is inherently deceptive. Much of the news coverage of
the Iowa decision has declared that “Gay Marriage” is now “legal” in Iowa. Or that a judge struck down a state “prohibition” against same-sex marriage. Neither statement is precisely true, and the distinctions matter.

Same sex marriage is legal in every state in the United States. Yes, you read that correctly. It’s legal everywhere. There is no law in any state that prevents a man and a man or a woman and a woman from marching down the aisle of a church (or standing together in a backyard garden) and saying “I do.” Priests and pastors from our watered-down mainline denominations perform these ceremonies all the time in states from coast to coast.

So, the issue is not whether same sex marriage is legal. The issue is whether same-sex marriage should receive the same state benefits as traditional marriage. Homosexual activists have made great progress in the public debate by essentially making people believe that the police would stop a same-sex couple from getting married. Nothing could be further from the truth. Homosexual activists are not asking for same-sex marriage to be “legal” (it already is) but instead for the state to recognize and incentivize their unions.

But what’s the state interest in doing so? Must the state recognize and incentivize every private relationship? At the moment, all of the available social science tells us that the two parent, mother-father family provides kids with their best chance to get a good education, escap poverty, and avoid prison. Why can’t the state choose to recognize and incentivize the one family structure that we know leads to the best outcomes across society?

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