Sunday, March 15, 2009

Civil Union, Marriage and Holy Matrimony

Recently, quite a few readers of the San Francisco Chronicle have suggested that all marriages should be called "civil unions," whether same-sex or opposite-sex, unless they are blessed by religious organizations. This is a dead-wrong proposal. Marriages, historically, in many cultures have always been civil actions, without religious content or implication. They were mostly social, often financial contracts. This supposedly progressive proposal to call all marriages "civil unions" will replace the discrimination against same-sex couples with discrimination against non-religious couples. Civil Union as a category was created as a compromise to accommodate same-sex couples and is innately a secondary class term. In these modern days, in order to respect and protect the rights to all members of the society, we should continue to call the marriages recognized by civil society and government "marriages," while those blessed by the religious organizations can be called “Holy Matrimony” as they have been for a very long time. This is far better than demoting the marriages of my grandparents and my parents into second class ones.

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