Sunday, August 17, 2008

First Week of School

First week of school is officially over, and in and amongst the readings and classes, I'm finding a bit more joy in school. Partially because I get to choose some of my classes this term, and also because the professors seem less like intellectual gods and more like scholars with something to share.

Okay, maybe they are simply demi-gods. One can always hope they retained some of their humanity.

Choice quotes and phrases from this week:

"wily quadruped"
"saucy interloper"
"corporate erection"

I'll just let those speak for themselves. First impressions: Property will be hard but hopefully interactive and somewhat interesting, Con Law is a poli sci major's dream, except that the final is going to be regimented and (I'm assuming) incredibly difficult if the argument isn't structured just so, Negotiation will be fun and hopefully slightly argumentative, and Family Law will be just plain fun.

I love watching the conservatives in class squirm every time we talk about the "definition of marriage" and "same-sex marriage" as well as "cohabitation." Great sport. (Honestly - I was waiting for someone to pull out a KJV or NIV and hurl it with great abandon at the professor's head. No such luck. Merely a bout of silent fuming and resignation. I hope there are some RAGING debates this term.)

More on this later - but as our examination of marriage begins, I can't help but think that the state has no business in the business of marriage. Much of our issue and problem would be resolved by abolishing state sanctioned marriage altogether and adopting a civil registry system for all couples. In doing so, we leave "marriage" to the individual couple (i.e., if one wants to invite God/Vishnu/Jesus/Yahweh into their marriage, they are free to do so at the temple/synagogue/church of their choice) but in order to reap the social benefits of couplehood and union, they must go to the registry office, register in person and receive documentation thereof.

I posit that any two consenting adults, regardless of gender, should be able to present themselves, verify they are free and able to join, solemnize the union in front of a court officer, and then go about their lives as they see fit. Whether their next stop is a church and a priest, a beach and a friend, or a wooded glen and a high priestess is their choice and none of the government's concern.

I imagine most churches will insist upon a registry license or somesuch before they will marry someone, but the point is this: those who wish to register as couples may do so, and those who wish to marry in church may do so without a registry. Or couples may do both.

Surely those who both claim limitations on government and the "sanctity of marriage" could not be opposed to such a proposal -- one which not only takes the government out of the business of intereference in individual lives and liberties, but also reserves the title of "marriage" to those who wish to recognize it via religious or social means, rather than governmental ones?

See what I did there?

1 comment:

Kate said...

Right on, Sista!