If passed by Washington voters, the Defense of Marriage Initiative would:
- add the phrase, “who are capable of having children with one another” to the legal definition of marriage;
- require that couples married in Washington file proof of procreation within three years of the date of marriage or have their marriage automatically annulled;
- require that couples married out of state file proof of procreation within three years of the date of marriage or have their marriage classed as “unrecognized;”
- establish a process for filing proof of procreation; and
- make it a criminal act for people in an unrecognized marriage to receive marriage benefits.
What we are about
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."
I think this is actually a very good illustration of how to dismantle an opponent's argument, and it does well what it means to do; illustrate the flaw of arguing against same-sex marriage based on the assumption that the only reason for marriage between a man and a woman is to create children.
Because of the success of this argument, I wonder if an Initiative would be embraced by any state or the U.S. legislature allowing a mother to murder her child up to the age of three years old, since (according to pro-abortion arguing points):
- the toddler is smaller than a teen or an adult;
- the toddler is less developed than a teen or an adult;
- the toddler is utterly dependent on other adults for his or her survival, and;
- the toddler is generally not recognized as sentient, or self-aware, since most of us do not have any memory of being younger than three.
- the mother would not have to provide reasons for her actions, but some reasons that might surface are;
* the baby would interfere with the mother’s education;
* the baby would be better off dead than live with a disability;
* the baby is being or has been abused, and would therefore be better off dead, or;
* the baby’s mother is having financial difficulties and needs to lighten her load – additionally the baby would be better off dead than poor.
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 Roe v. Wade. By getting the initiatives passed, we hope the Supreme Court will strike them down as unconstitional and thus weaken Roe itself. And at the very least, it should be good fun to see the pro-abortion lobby who have long screamed that abortion should be legal because an unborn child is not a person be forced to choke on their own rhetoric.
"This is the true joy in life, the being used for a purpose recognized by yourself as a mighty one; the being thoroughly worn out before you are thrown on the scrap heap; the being a force of Nature instead of a feverish selfish little clod of ailments and grievances complaining that the world will not devote itself to making you happy."
- George Bernard Shaw (1856 - 1950), Man and Superman, Epistle Dedicatory