Marriage and the death of reason

February 6, 2013 § 48 Comments

There are increasing voices among traditional Christians calling for government to “get out of the marriage business”.  I am having a difficult time distinguishing between this suggestion and a suggestion that we all just stop thinking.

I don’t mean this flippantly or as an insult.  I mean it literally: calling for government to get out of the marriage business is difficult for me to distinguish from suggesting that we literally find some way to turn off our reason and stop thinking about the subject.

One thing it might mean is that government should get out of the business of enforcing and adjudicating contracts altogether.  We’ve discussed that line of reasoning before.

Another thing that it might mean is that government should not be in the business of enforcing marriage contracts specifically.  The government would still be in the business of enforcing other kinds of contracts.  But this requires government to be in the business of determining what is and is not marriage, and what is and is not enforceable in the context of marriage: in other words, it requires government to be in the marriage business.

While I am sympathetic to the impulse to place limits on what government under unreasoning liberal tyranny can do, I don’t think that adding more unreasoning liberal tyranny onto the fire is going to help.

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