Comments about ‘In our opinion: Child-centric marriage’

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Published: Wednesday, Feb. 5 2014 12:00 a.m. MST

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Salt Lake City, UT

"that encourages parents to subordinate their interests to the needs of their children"

That's not marriage, that's parenting.

Marriage is an adult-centric matter rather than child-centric because it's the binding of a relationship between those two adults. That's why there is no requirement to have children to marry, there is no requirement to marry if you have children, there is no requirement to be fertile to marry. Even the fact that single people can adopt shows that this state does not view children's needs to be based on having married parents.

Except when it comes to same-sex marriage. For some reason it's fine for children to be raised by a single gay parent but once you add a second person of the same sex to the parenting dynamic now there's a problem?

"to secure a sufficient social and economic base to care for the elderly"

Gay people aren't suddenly going to have kids if they don't have a same-sex marriage. In fact they're more likely to have kids (through adoption or in-vitro) if they are married since well... married households tend to have more stability.

Salt Lake City, UT

"A wealth of social-science data teach that children do best emotionally, socially, intellectually and even economically when reared in an intact home"

Yet you deny others the ability to make these sorts of homes. And you use the average argument to literally nothing else other than banning same-sex marriage. Single people? Sure they can adopt. We'd never consider using statistical averages to start banning races, religions, or anything else from marrying. But gay people? Sure, ban it. Why the inconsistency?

"Utah’s approach to marriage helps ensure adequate reproduction of children"

We're talking about marriage, not sex. They're separate. Utah is projected to double in population in under a quarter century.

[state respects and values citizens “who have formed intimate, committed relationships with someone of the same sex”]

I don't see the evidence, after all Amendment 3 banned civil unions too, because apparently it wasn't just marriage to the Amendment 3 side, they were opposed to any sort of recognition of same-sex couples. So where's the respect and value of these committed relationships? The fact that they aren't arrested for having them (Lawrence v Texas would stop that law anyway)?

Stalwart Sentinel
San Jose, CA

New day, same losing arguments. The only difference between now and early December 2013 is there are a bunch of private practice attorneys with $2 million more dollars in their pockets thanks to the wonders of copy/paste.

What the DesNews and conservatives apparently don't understand is that their faith-based reasoning of "we believe marriage is for child-bearing and that is the preeminent reason for marriage" fails on two counts: 1) there is no bar for straight couples to meet that evinces this theory, and 2) it literally has no legal basis. The law does not care, and should not care, what you believe marriage to be. If two people of sound mind desire to get married, then they can get married. What this article proposes essentially is a litmus test, based on their subjective standards, for obtaining a marriage license.

Finally, it's an absolute joke that the attorneys can straight-faced claim Utah cherishes their children as society's greatest asset. One need only look at school funding in Utah, attempts to privatize education for upper class kids via charter schools, or the lack of social infrastructure for low-income children to know that is a complete farce.

Unreconstructed Reb
Chantilly, VA

So the state has an interest in encouraging ideal, traditional family structures? Fine, no argument against that from me.

But there's a difference between promoting the ideal and forbidding anything less. The state's argument suggests we should also outlaw divorce and single-parent adoptions because those also fall short of the ideal and potentially impact children negatively. How far is the state willing to go in pushing its ideal to the detriment of anyone who doesn't measure up to it? If my family isn't perfect enough to fit into a stock family picture in the Ensign or the Deseret news, is it invalid?

Nope, nothing here appears sufficient to overturn a lower court ruling that Amendment 3 violates the Constitution. The law has a habit of sidestepping one's notion of the ideal, and opting for the pragmatism of reality on the ground instead. Not everyone matches well to society's ideal, and those people don't deserve punishment or denial of rights for that.

John Kateel
Salt Lake City, UT

Compared to states such as Massachusetts and country's such as Canada, the state of Utah falls short in their role of protecting kids even within heterosexual marriage. We have no mandatory paid maternity leave. We do not have paternity leave. We allow guns to be kept unlocked and just lying around in homes with children without penalty. We have lower immunization rates than our industrialized peers. In my opinion, the state's position is a farce. Gay marriage has not destroyed families in Canada or the Netherlands. But very specific policies in Utah have harmed kids within heterosexual marriages. We even have a higher divorce rate than the US average. Fix those problems first and do not concern yourself with gay marriage.

Centerville, UT

Here's one part I simply don't understand: According to the editorial, "the state respects and values citizens “who have formed intimate, committed relationships with someone of the same sex” and emphasized that those citizens and their children are “equal before the law and fully entitled to order their private lives in the manner they have chosen.”

How is traditional marriage strengthened by refusing legal recognition to those who order their private lives in the manner they have chosen? Children will still be raised in those families, without one or both biological parents.If they were "fully entitled" to order their private lives, they would be able to get married. Perhaps the argument is simply inartfully worded.

Also, why must child-centric and adult-centric views be mutually exclusive? I have raised five children. We have had a child-centric marriage as suggested by the article. But I value my relationship with my wife equally to the relationship I have with my children. I have never distinguished between the two. Have you?

Karen R.
Houston, TX

Implying that SSM is not child-centric is the same as saying that those who are pro-choice are for abortion. It isn't either/or and if you think it is then your personal biases are preventing you from seeing the entire picture.

How exactly are same-sex couples and their children equal before the law?

You didn't mention that the state also argues that the court should consider the fact that more religions in the state oppose SSM than support it, ignoring the fact that this asks an arm of the federal government to tacitly favor some religious beliefs over others.

In the next breath it argues that finding anti-SSM laws discriminatory means that religious institutions and religious individuals may not be allowed to discriminate against LGBTs anymore and that this is an infringement upon religious liberty.

Here, UT

"As a legal matter, there are many reasons why the district court’s decision imposing same-sex marriage should be reversed."

There are NO legitimate reasons.

1) Marriage licenses do NOT require a couple to have children.
2) Having children does NOT require a marriage license.

Potsdam, 00

There is a beautiful accord in music, geometric aspects in architecture and the sound reflections of peace in nature.
This creation is so unite in all of it's synphony.

Having a word such A : Aware and another B : Bottom ...we may combine those two and get another meaningful figure. "I was not aware to the bottom line of this".

There is a spiritual(psychosomatic) appeal to a mother and a father that will give a deeper meaning to a child in role playing as combined to one.
We may not have the proper words for such phenomena, but it is implanted into the child's mind and will last for a life time.

Potsdam, 00

part 2

Society being robbed of that rich soil that parents of the opposite sex can provide to their offspring, has not yet been measured.

Just imagine as DNA is passed on to children, so are talents of spiritual nature and emotional frame being passed on from Great/Grandfather and Father and so on along to society. Society will suffer if this tree of ancient intelligence is cut off.

We might not have time to observe such in future generations.
However, society is smart to avoid a collision course with such an experiment.

Mike Richards
South Jordan, Utah

The poem by C.C. Miller, tell the danger that society faces:

‘Twas a sheep not a lamb that went astray
In the parable Jesus told.
‘Twas a grown sheep that wandered away
From the ninety and nine in the fold.

And out on the hilltop, and out in the cold,
‘Twas a sheep the Good Shepherd sought.
Back to the fold and back to the flock,
‘Twas a sheep that the Good Shepherd brought.

Now, why should the sheep be so carefully fed
And cared for even to-day?
Because there is danger if they go wrong,
They will lead the lambs astray.

The lambs will follow the sheep, you know,
Where’er they wander–where’er they go.
If the sheep goes wrong, it will not be long
Till the lambs are as wrong as they.

So still with the sheep we must earnestly plead,
For the sake of the lambs to-day.
If the lambs are lost, what a terrible cost
The sheep will have to pay!

liberal larry
salt lake City, utah

People get married for many reasons, and those who have children should take their responsibility very seriously, but the central problem with Utah's legal argument against gay marriage remains. How does allowing same sex marriages harm Utah's "traditional marriages"?

My cousin and her partner are raising a beautiful adopted child, isn't that "child centric"?

San Antonio, TX

None of these arguments is a compelling reason to subvert the equal protection clause of the 14th amendment. Then add the fact that you turn every non traditional family into a second class unit under the law. This is a weak elitist argument designed to protect the point of view of the majority by sacrificing the rights of everybody else.

Berkeley reader
Berkeley , CA

One of the biggest holes in this self-serving editorial is the glib repetition that gay people and their families are "fully equal before the law." Simply not true. The Utah legislature won't even consider a non-discrimination law for housing and employment for gay people and their families, much less allow equal taxation, adoption, social services, and a host of other state services. For the state and this newspaper to declare that gay Utahns are fully "equal" takes a lot of hutzpah. The courts will certainly not buy it. The state's case is doomed.

Counter Intelligence
Salt Lake City, UT

Taking religion out of the equation - the secular purpose for marriage is to protect women and children. If you take gender and childbearing out of the equation - you don't have marriage, you merely have a partnership. Ironically both polygamy and interfamily marriage have greater historical biological and sociological precedent than same-sex marriage. If gender does not matter, then neither does number or blood relationship. The entire institution is reconstructed.

It is interesting that the main argument for gay marriage is merely "you are a bigot if you question it"

I am homosexual and not LDS, but I have particular lack of respect for members of who flip their own faith in an attempt to appear intellectual by myopically jumping on the bandwagon of politically correct bullying, or gay activist who cheerlead it.

Salt Lake City, UT

If only the States arguments were true in real life. The ideal would be wonderful. But that isn't the case. In our area there are many varied families. Single, Same Sex, straight couples and grandparents raising unwanted kids. . The best kids in the neighborhood come from the single parents and same sex couples. They are taught compassion and tolerance. They know bigotry and the feeling of being different. On the other hand, the kids that get the police called on them the most come from several families headed by "perfect heterosexual church going parents". I know that isn't always the case....thank heavens...but when I had the sons of three prominent "church families" arrested it made me wonder what they had been taught? I know this isn't always the case but these kids lacked tolerance. These church going kids had learned somewhere it was OK to harass those who were different. After being arrested they (and their parents) had a change of heart for some reason????? Just because they were the majority, it didn't make their actions legal.....rule of law vs. rule of the majority.

E Sam
Provo, UT

Approximately 20% of the American people live in traditional 2 parent households with children living at home. The other 80% are either single parents, childless, unmarried, or empty-nesters. Essentially, Utah is declaring that 80% of Americans are living in sub-standard arrangements.

Eugene, OR

A widowed Howard W. Hunter remarried in his 80s to a woman who was also elderly. That marriage clearly wasn't going to produce a child, so I guess it wasn't valid by your criteria, right?


"Utah’s marriage laws advance the state’s interest in children being raised by biological mothers and fathers"

This argument is wholly undermined by the State of Utah's own actions. The State grants marriage licenses to heterosexual couples raising adopted non-biological children. But the State denies marriage licenses to homosexual couples raising children even if those children are biologically related to one of the parents. That fact that the State grants marriage licenses in situations where children have (0) biological connection to their parents, but refuses to grant licenses where children have (1) biological connection, conclusively proves that the State's actions are not guided by a belief in biological connections. Instead, they are guided by a belief in traditional gender roles.

Dr. G
Bountiful, UT

Divorce law represents a large segment of jurisprudence with specially trained lawyers, family law courts, and dedicated judges, which, for the most part, exist to determine the fate and responsibilities of the parties involved as to the support and upbringing of any children which may have come as a result of the marriage. Laws governing marriage should at least grant an equal weight to the "children" question at the formation of a marriage, as it does to the laws governing the "children" question when a marriage is dissolved.

Marriage is, first and foremost, about the pro-creation of children. All other emotional and economic questions can be answered without a marriage contract. Children require a marriage contract in order to provide for their long-term care, in a stable environment, living with their biological parents. The state has, as its main responsibility, to see that yet-to-be-born children are provided with the greatest chance of living with their biological parents by means of a marriage contract. At least as much care should be given this question as is given the question of a child's well-being in divorce.

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