Monday, June 27, 2011

Marriage isn't about kids.

So, a Bishop Nicholas DiMarzio wrote an opinion piece at He's not happy about the passage of same-sex marriage rights in New York. His argument is summed up with this:
It is destructive because we fail to view marriage in the context of a vocation: a calling to participate in the great enterprise of forming the next generation.

Marriage is reduced to an empty honor.
Actually, no. Marriage is not just for "forming the next generation." If a man and woman get married who are incapable of having children, their marriage is NOT an empty honor. It will still (ideally) be a relationship built on love, trust, and respect. It will still be a visible commitment to the world of that relationship. It will be an opportunity to deepen their love, trust and respect for each other. It will be many things, but it will not be empty. Children are not the be-all and end-all of marriage, they aren't even the most important part of it. Marriage is not a job, it is not a calling, it's a relationship.

If marriage is just a job for creating kids, then who cares if you commit adultery? Just make sure you don't have kids doing it. If marriage is just a job for creating kids, then why not arrange marriages with an eye toward breeding kids with the traits we want? You know, like horse breeding. Indeed, if marriage is just a job for creating kids, let's start having interviews, and deny you marriage if you don't pass. You can put forth your qualifications in a resume: "good at child discipline, and believe in strict bedtimes." Don't forget periodic reviews! "Your child disobeyed an average of 2 times per week last quarter. What do you plan on doing to correct this trend?"

Marriage is a relationship. Whether it is good or bad has nothing to do with the gender of those involved. So how about we start showing a little fairness?


  1. The Wife Thinks Occasionally, TooJuly 4, 2011 at 5:11 PM

    As someone who was raised Catholic, it saddens me when the Church balks at change. It's a little like watching a titan fall. There was a time when they used to persuade people to convert by "explaining how you and I" were not so different. Heavens know there were enough saints in the Church created for just this reason. As the world has become more connected, this practice has fallen by the wayside, but still, there were those that kept moving the Church forward, even by small things: The Latin Mass was put aside in favor of the native language for each area, John Paul II came up with a way for evolution and creation to exist in harmony, not contradiction. I may not like organized religion, but unlike my husband, I do feel it can find a place in the modern world, albeit a smaller place, but peaceful and inclusive. I am not an atheist, I cling to my beliefs in troubled times like a security blanket, but I'm willing to listen to new ideas and view empirical evidence as something that may change my mind someday. This is an attitude that I feel any religion could benefit from. The more one stays stuck in the past, the louder its proverbial death-rattle is to me. I have a particular fondness for the Catholics (my parents are still Catholic after all), and losing the Church would be like seeing the end of an era. And this saddens me.

  2. Actually anyone can have a relationship. Marriage is there to provide a safe/stable environment for kids, as evidenced by the fact that the courts primary concern is the kids when a divorce occurs.

    What is the point of getting married without kids? simply fringe benefits, i.e. not having to bother with writing a will for survivorship, or being able to get insurance discounts (those DO need to be re-analyzed).

    Marriage without kids is basically about convenience and saving money on top of an existing relationship, not the same thing. Whoop de doo.

    Kids ARE a job, hopefully one you enjoy :) But my heart goes out to single parents, who have the double whammy of being responsible for minors and not the conveniences of insurance discounts and etc.