Friday, February 6, 2009

In Praise of Love and Limited Government

Why aren't we talking about the denial of same-sex marriage as a form of unwarranted governmental intrusion into people's private love lives? If the state is going to sponsor the institution of marriage in the first place, why on earth should it be allowed to discriminate? I do not understand why the Equal Protection Clause (14th Amendment) doesn't prohibit this discrimination. I'm still waiting for someone to explain it to me.

I may be a radical pinko ailurophilic feminist, but doggone it, here's a place for limited government. It seems like my political ilk ought to be able to make common cause with conservatives and libertarians on this issue.

And what could be more intrusive than forcibly divorcing people who've already lawfully wedded? All those couples in California who married in that golden summer and fall of marriage equality? I saw this at Shakesville and wept:

(Video by the Courage Campaign; go here to sign their petition in favor of same-sex marriage rights in California.)

In her commentary at Shakesville, Melissa McEwan remarked that she'd once lived in fear of her husband running afoul of the INS, and so she had an inkling of how it feels for the state to hold veto power over one's love affairs. Her story resonated with me. I've written about how INS officials and even customs inspectors have held my marriage briefly hostage at the U.S. border - just for giggles.

Of course, those were only transient incidents. I've enjoyed heteronormative privilege my whole life. I would've had a helluva time importing my furrin husband if he'd been my furrin girlfriend instead. While the Sungold-as-lesbian part of that scenario is hypothetical, the quandary is not. Grad school friends of mine had all sort of legal hassles, just because they were same-sex but, um, heteronational, so to speak.

Oh, and I didn't know until now who was spearheading the campaign for mass forced divorce in California. Doesn't it just figure! Our friend Ken Starr, hollowing out our privacy rights since 1998! And don't assume being hetero-anything will protect you from his wrath ...

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