Wednesday, April 20, 2005

Told ya so

In the ongoing debate over same-sex marriage, those supporting traditional marriage have made the "slippery-slope" argument: if same-sex marriage is allowed, virtually every other conceivable form of sexual relationship could be deemed marriage. Senator Rick Santorum is somewhat (in)famous for making just this argument two years ago. While slippery-slope arguments are not the strongest -- what if there is no objection to whatever is found at the bottom of the slope? -- but they do make a point.

In this case, the point is that advocates of same-sex marriage have not only failed to articulate a reasoned position which would allow same-sex marriage but prohibit, for example, polygamy... they have (for the most part) not even attempted to find such a position. That is, they don't even attempt to make an argument along these lines.

Last month, Stanley Kurtz penned an article for NRO entitled, "Rick Santorum Was Right: Meet the Future of Marriage in America." The article begins with this paragraph:
    I have seen the future of American family law, and her name is Elizabeth F. Emens. A whiz kid with a Ph.D. in English from Cambridge University and a J.D. from Yale Law School, Emens, who teaches the University of Chicago Law School, has published a major legal and cultural defense of polyamory (group marriage). In "Beyond Gay Marriage," I showed that state-sanctioned polyamory was rapidly becoming the favorite cause of scholars of family law. Yet not until now has anyone offered so bold, informed, intelligent, and comprehensive a brief for polyamory. Emens's breakthrough article is a sign that the case for mainstreaming polyamory is finally being...well, mainstreamed.
Curious, I got a copy of Emens' article from the local public library, and am in the process of reading it. Kurtz's take on the article is spot-on at this point. I'll post more about it when I complete it, but in the meantime, I wonder...

what will the response of same-sex marriage proponents be?

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