Our take:A Seattle Times guest columnist, Jason Backholm, writes his view of Referendum 74, which asks Washington voters to accept or reject a 2012 bill legalizing same-sex marriage. According to Backholm, the referendum's true focus is on redefining the purpose of marriage and not legal rights.
Referendum 74 is about the definition of marriage. It’s not an issue of legal rights.
In 2009, voters approved the “Everything but Marriage” law which grants same-sex couples every right and benefit of marriage.
Nor is it about civil rights. While everyone has the right to get married, there is no right to marry whomever you want. Therefore, the question is whether marriage should be defined as the union of “a man and a woman” or just any “two persons.”
This decision requires us to consider the purpose of marriage. Voters have two choices. One side argues that the purpose of marriage is to affirm the love and commitment adults share. “Our love and commitment is the same,” same-sex couples argue. “We should be able to get married.”
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