The Gross National Debt

Friday, July 3, 2015

This above all

... to thine own self be true,
And it must follow, as the night the day,
Thou canst not then be false to any man.
Farewell, my blessing season this in thee!

VF bought a copy of the book not a fan. by Kyle Idleman and had it sent to me.

Read part of it last night.

After reading and laying in bed thinking, I came to a realization, thanks to Mr. Idleman's words and a conversation I had earlier that day with She Whose Name Must Not Be Mentioned (some of you will get that. If you don't, I shan't explain.)

Her comment "Render under to Ceasar that which is Ceasar's" struck me pretty hard. With Mr. Idleman's backup,  I found myself remembering an opinion I have held for more than 30 years.


The very few folks who have a promise from me to do their weddings and sign their license, no worries. Maggie & Will, yer still good. I'll be there. I want to be there. It's important to me. So, as I am trying - and too often failing - to be a man of my word, I'm gonna sign those for to whom I have made this promise. Those who have this promise from me, you are important to me and my doing what you've asked is also important. We'll make it happen. No, you can't back out. :D

"Do what you say and say what you do."

Otherwise, effective immediately, I am not longer signing marriage licenses.

Years ago when I received my first ordination, I was so excited that I actively looked for someone to marry. Found some. Over the years, and a second ordination later from a different church, more people came and asked me to sign their papers. I have a third ordination pending, in case you don't wonder.

At the same time, I still held to the belief that government has no business in marriage. Government turns marriage into a must-ask-permission economic contract. Marriage, to me, is not economics. Certainly economics is involved. But government's permission is decidedly not needed. Other contracts between individuals don't need government permission. Why marriage?

Taxes are still paid. Bills are still incurred. Disagreements still happen. Separations still occur.

I understand that a marriage license brings with it certain government protections. I object to this as well. A family does not need a piece of paper from the government to guarantee government action or inaction. What is available to one, should be available to all. Requiring a "license" is a government attempt to control the private lives of people.

Someone is going to say "but the children need protections." Absolutley agreed. But if you think a signed piece of paper guarantees that, you have not parsed this situation, nor paid attention to what government does to and for children whose parents are not married.

As far as I know, no official religious text in the world requires government permission for adults to marry. May be one which does. If so, please let me know in the comments below.

Adults do not need government's permission to live together, to love, to share resources, to raise children, grow old and, well, be married. The only permission they need is from each other. Some religions may require a blessing by a member of the clergy. Certainly some people WANT a blessing by clergy. That is still different than government permission... unless government is your religion.

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