Wednesday, April 24, 2013

U is for Union

Today is my anniversary of a lot of years. Decades, even. (I don’t do numbers; just words. But trust me, we were united a long time ago.) And a happy union it is.

But milestones like this cause one to reflect on what it means to have such a strong connection to another that you seek public validation of the relationship, an acknowledgement of it’s value to society.

We lived together before we made any formal commitment. Our first formal commitment was buying a house together. That legal document bound us more than a marriage certificate. It’s a bunch easier to dissolve a marriage than to get out from under a 30-year, jointly-signed mortgage!

The second commitment we made, though not legal, was adopting two dogs. The third, a decision to have a baby. Now my mother wasn’t so wild about that order. But we were happy in our choices.

Only then, when we pieced our lives together, did we realize we wanted the paper work that accompanied what had accumulated into a formal commitment. We wanted to live our lives together--forever. It was pretty easy to make that happen.

But what if you love another and the world tells you you cannot formalize that love? What if the power majority get to decide the definition of “union”?

It certainly was true with the miscegenation laws. Quotes from past decades stated that mixed-race marriage would tear at the very fabric of what marriage means and society would go down the toilet in a big flush.

Well, that didn’t happen, now did it? I read that if “society” had waited to do away with miscegenation laws until “society” agreed with mixed race marriages, it would have been in 1991 before the majority tilted to that perspective. Really?

That just shows that sometimes laws to right injustices are needed before the public perception changes.

We are in the same predicament now with same-sex marriages. Who really believes that MY marriage is threatened in any way by the marriage of any other couple? I mean, really, can you claim with a straight face that a marriage performed by an Elvis impersonator is a holy affair. That the “sanctity” of the institution is upheld. [No offense meant to those unions, by the way. I’m just trying to make a point that not everyone goes the walk-down-the-traditional-aisle route.]

The majority of Americans accept the idea of equality marriages but many legislators continue to try to block it with laws.

Having said that, believing that people who love should be allowed to formalize their relationship, let me say that I don’t believe the government should get involved in “marriage” at all--for me, for anybody else.

I cede “marriage” to the religious groups to control. Let them marry who they want. Or deny it if that is their tenet.

But UNION, ah, that the government does, can, and should control. I needed a license to “marry”. The government recognized the formality of the document. Same could happen with unions. Let the government grant “union” licenses; if couples want to layer on “marriage”, find a religious group to do so. Matters me no mind.

But the government, apparently, has to step in to make things legal. So do it, Feds!


  1. Well, I happen to think society's totally gone down the toilet, but I attribute its demise to talk shows like Jerry Springer and Reality TV. ;-)

    Long live love! Vive l'amour!
    Some Dark Romantic

    1. LOL Thanks for coming by and dropping in that observation! I tend to agree!