Are we married or not?

Authors note: This post is a little scattered, but I was writing as this was rushing through my head and needed to be put in print.

A big issue I see in the whole “married” persons debate and same sex marriages is that you cannot give people rights entitled to married persons, such as medical, taxes, and other legal tidbits without them being “married”.  There are too many regs on the books that specify “married”, all of which would have to be changed, which would require every State’s legislature, and the Federal government in many cases, to change via vote thousands of statutes and regulations and laws.  Because of partisan politics this process will take an indefinite amount of time (i.e. it will never happen).

The point being here that it will be simpler to change the definition of “marriage” than it will be to change or add to the parameters for “married” benefits to all civil unions.

The whole marriage vs. civil union debate also brings-up an important question: Since my wife and I were married by the County Clerk and not by a religious body, do we have a “civil union” or a “marriage”.  Under the LDS Church and other’s definition of marriage the union must be recognized by them to be considered a valid “marriage”.  Therefore my wife and I are not technically married and simply have a civil union since we were married in a civil, not religious ceremony.  So, under this presumption do we really have the same legal rights as someone married in the LDS Temple or by a representative of the LDS Church or any other church?

But given the nature of civil unions as described above, why does the LDS Church and others oppose same-sex couples from being joined in legal partnership by a civil servant also.  They say they don’t, but they do oppose the same ceremony being used for these people.

The double-talk and loose definitions are a huge problem in fighting this whole issue.  I think before any progress can be made, the terms “marriage” and “civil union” and religion’s role in each is going to have to be clearly defined by all.

~ Lucius Scribbens