Saturday, August 7, 2010

Get the government out of the marriage business

Time for a divorce

This is what I've been saying for over a year now.

I was married once. I'm now divorced. The state was not involved when I got married, and it wasn't involved when I got divorced. This was not by design, but it is how things turned out. Some people will tell me that I wasn't "really" married at all because I didn't get permission from the government. But why should my (now ex) wife and I, as adults, need to ask the state for permission in the first place? How is it the business of government to decide who is married and who is not? Why is the state even informed of the change in status?

This brings me to the very point that this article makes so well. Why is the state involved in defining marriage? Worse yet, why does it assume the role of permission-giver, without whose assent a marriage is not "real"? Does that make any sort of sense in a free society?

Let the role of the state be limited to the enforcement of valid contracts between consenting adults, and let the adults in question define their relationship in whatever terms they choose.

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