Who defines marriage?

Don’t shoot the messenger. But I have to ask some questions that might make you squirm. These follow the Supreme Court decision to order states to allow same-sex marriages.

First, the Constitution says nada about marriage. It is the states that have always defined who could marry. Some have voted to allow same-sex marriages. Many were debating the issue. The Constitution gives the court no power in this. Yet the justices plucked that power from the sky. They told the states their debates are over. Screw your old definitions of marriage.

Those definitions came from ancient traditions. Religious and societal. Screw ‘em, the court ordered. They mean nothing. If people love each other they can marry.

Now the questions: How about threesomes? One threesome has already filed a suit to allow marriage between a man and two women. How about a marriage of three women? Or three men? Or two men and one woman?

Why stop there? Why not four of each? Or six? Or a dozen – which might be cheaper? Same sex? Mix n’ match?



Wait. I am not denigrating same-sex marriage. And don’t think I am playing the cynic or comic here. This could not be more serious.

Onward with the possibilities: How about a marriage of 40? Yes, an entire clan or commune. We love each other and therefore we should be allowed to marry.

Then there is one woman and ten men. Or one man and 200 women.

What reason is there to deny cousins from marrying? Two or three or six of them? Why cannot mom and daughter marry? Or mom and son? Or dad and son or daughter? Sisters and sisters? Brothers and sisters? (If you worry about birth defects we can guard against them with modern testing.)

And what about animal rights? Think Harry and his German Shepherd. Lordy, let’s not go there today.

What objection can there be to such marriages? Well, ahem, you say. There are religious objections.

“Screw ‘em,” the big court has just decreed.

And there are, you know, ancient societal traditions about such things. And there are definitions by the states. As to what is marriage and what is not. “Screw ‘em and screw ‘em,” the court just declared. Such prohibitions have no meaning.

In other words, there are concepts that prohibit brother and sister from marrying. Concepts that keep mom and son from legally mating. They come from somewhere in history. That somewhere is exactly the same place that concepts against same-sex marriage came from. And the court has declared by law that we must forget that somewhere. We must ignore those concepts. If people love each other and they are both named Sally they can marry.

Sorry, but it is not even soggy ground the justices stand on. If we use their argument, five Sallys are just as entitled to sally forth into matrimony as two Franks.

Five justices said yes to same-sex marriages. They said those folks who denied such marriages “disparaged and inflicted dignitary wounds” upon their gay and lesbian neighbors. How will they handle the dignitary wounds of the Heinz 57 folks I list above?

When confronted maybe the justices will say “Well, we prohibit you quadruplets from marrying. We base our decision on this ancient tradition right over here. Wait a minute. We destroyed that tradition, didn’t we? Back in 2015.”

I wonder about a few things. How do you suppose twelve people will get divorced? Especially if eight want to, three don’t and one wants another drag? What would alimony and support look like? Lawyers will feast!

I wonder if maybe we should have looked at civil contracts? Kept marriage as it was? Allowed anybody and everybody to form civil unions under contract?

I wonder how many of us ask the question comedian Peter Sellers used to pose. It was via his aged radio characters Minn and Crun. Minn would ask her mate in a creaking voice “Where will it all end, Crun? Where will it all end?”

Those seven virgins who want to marry me want to know. Psst, don’t tell my wife. She is hung up on tradition.

From Tom...as in Morgan.

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