The United States government wants YOU to get married. As soon as possible, and certainly before you have sex. It doesn’t much care who you marry, as long as it’s someone of the other gender.
And it’s spending billions of your tax dollars to convince you to do so.
According to a new SIECUS Special Report, the Bush Administration has created a “federally subsidized industry” through which Washington and the states give money to conservative and religious groups to persuade people to marry.
Progressive voices decry this institutionalized discrimination against people who can’t get married—i.e., gays and lesbians. But the problem with this marriage gravy train goes way beyond that.
Portraying itself as a program to reduce teen pregnancy, poverty, and single-parent families, marriage promotion leaves young people unable to make good decisions about when and whom to marry, and when or whether to have children. This, of course, is the same fundamental problem with abstinence-only-until-marriage programs: they provide a one-solution-fits-all approach without teaching any decision-making skills.
Not only do these marriage-promotion programs assert that gay relationships are unhealthy and morally inferior, they assert that ALL relationships other than marriage are. And those are MOST of the sexual and intimate relationships that Americans will ever have.
If the government’s true motivation were to increase the number of children raised by two parents, they would have included support for gay families and encouraged long-term gay relationships. Social science research clearly shows that the kids of gay parents grow up with the same strengths and deficits as the kids of similar heterosexual parents.
The government doesn’t even care if all these marriages it’s encouraging are happy ones. They just want all those sex-crazed singles domesticated into sexually-controlled spouses. The government apparently believes its own propaganda about marriage turning immoral people into moral ones. Moral ones like David Vitter, Rudy Giuliani, and Larry Craig.
Our country is justifiably proud of its diversity. It is disgusting that our government should promote one kind of relationship and one kind of family as the ideal, and give billions to right-wing groups to accomplish this ideological agenda.
Along with abstinence-only, internet censorship, hatred of contraception, and a war on adult entertainment, marriage promotion is another program that must be dismantled when the Democrats assume the Presidency in 15 months. Our government has systematically undermined our sexual and intimate expression long enough. A systematic ending of the means for doing so is essential—and it won’t happen by itself.
Let’s remember to demand that victorious politicians start 2009 by cleaning up this immoral intrusion into our lives.