Conservatives don't want gay marriage.
Progressive people want marriage equality.
People assume that those are incompatible, but they're not, we can meet both those requirements. Just get rid of marraige altogether and there will be marriage equality without introducing gay marriage.
People could still have wedding ceremonies and say they're married, call each other husband/wife etc. The governement just would give no legal recognition for marriage, but only civil unions (for everyone).
So we'd have complete equality and no gay marriage. Who thinks this compromise is a great idea?
- I'm a conservative, I'd be happy with this.Vote A
- I'm a conservative, I'd be unhappy with this, I want marriage equality as well as no gay marriage.Vote B
- I'm progressive, I'd be happy with this.Vote C
- I'm progressive, I'd be unhappy with this, I want marriage to be a legally recognised thing.Vote D
- See answersVote E
If you're voting D, why? Everyone could have a wedding ceremony, get a piece of paper that says they are married etc. and could also get a government recognised civil union to have the current rights related to marriage. There would be complete equality and the conservatives should be happy.
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One of the few legitimate functions of government is to recognize and, where necessary, to enforce contracts. For the government to refuse to recognize and to enforce a provision entitling any particular contract as a 'marriage' would be a breach of that governmental function.
If people should be allowed to have whatever consensual relationships they want (and I think that they should, and perhaps you agree), then part of that is being able to label the relationship. But, certainly, government should get out of imposing terms and conditions, which is what it does now to marriage. Government should enforce contracts, not write them.
By the way, I am neither a 'conservative' nor a 'progressive'. My politics can be summarized as follows: "All acts except initiations of force (violence) should be legal, and government should exist whose sole function is to retaliate against initiations of force."
And, by the way, I think many conservatives and progressives would be unhappy with your proposal, as with mine.1