It isn’t every day I read about the Republicans and the French being on the same page.
In order to settle a similar debate about homosexual marriages France implemented civil unions to be available to everyone, gay or straight.
Now, New Hampshire Republicans have introduced bill HB569, which “privatizes marriage” to the churches. If two people want the legal protections of marriage in New Hampshire, they can get a “domestic partnership” under the bill. If they want to be “married” they can go find a church.
What is amusing is that this course of action in France has led to results that would likely infuriate American conservatives. Civil unions will soon be more popular than marriage in France. Divorce scarred French lovers like that French civil unions can be dissolved in under an hour. The large secular population in French culture likes the option of being “married” without having the church having anything to do with it.
So, will Republicans end up shooting themselves in the foot with this tactic? Will they end up making civil unions the norm in the U.S. and marriage an extra religious ritual that only some people do? The opponents to gay marriage I have talked do not have a problem with civil unions, they just want the word “marriage” reserved for heterosexual people. Well, as the French have long known, you can’t control language.
If civil unions become the norm in the U.S., Americans will likely still use terms like “we’re married”, “husband”, “wife” etc even if the government gets out of the business of giving legal meanings to those terms. Gay couples will still refer to their SOs as “my husband”/”my wife” and there will not be anything the religious right will be able to do about it. All they will accomplish will be reducing marriage as institution in our country, the opposite of which, is what they claim they are fighting for. For all of the talk about defending marriage, Republicans may be the ones who ultimately finish it off as an American institution if civil unions go the way of French civil unions.
- None Found