I got interested in the recent comments of Solicitor-General Florin Hilbay on the Same-Sex Marriage petition to the Supreme Court of the Philippines by Atty. Jesus Falcis III.
Here are the articles that published the comments of the Solicitor General:
SolGen asks SC to junk ‘intrinsically flawed’ same-sex marriage bid
Same-sex marriage plea disputed
I got interested in these comments on another article I responded too, my discussions for this article are down way below:
SC asked: Allow same-sex marriage in PH
The 31-page petition highlights the need for a more LGBT-inclusive society and is the first known and reported legal action of its kind before the Philippine High Court
Jess Lopez: Thumbs up. However, i don’t think the SC will hear it because there has been no actual case of a gay couple asking then being denied a marriage license.
Neil Gonzalo: I think he invoked transcendental importance to bypass the justiciability/actual case or controversy requirement.
And so I wanted to know about “transcendental importance” and so I asked another commenter from one of the articles above:
Sam DeAsis: I think another clear-cut arguments for the outright dismissal of this case is that: the case is not ripe yet because petitioner did not apply yet for a marriage license and was denied; the petitioner lacks standing because he did not suffer any injury nor denied the equal protection of the law because of his being gay; and his grievance or cause of action is general and of course, wrong court and party. As a lawyer, this guy should know what a pleading should contain at a minimum to withstand a motion to dismiss.
Same sex marriage should not be allowed in Pinas. Let’s not be a copycat. After ‘same sex’ what’s next? The right to marry your dog because you love your dog and your dog love’s you too? Sodom & Gomorrah na. God forbade!
Pepe: Hi Sam. I heard someone said that Falcis invoked “transcendental importance” to bypass the justiciability, actual case, or controversy requirement. Is that a legitimate avenue? Thanks!
Sam DeAsis: I think the allegation of ‘transcendental importance’ is even harder avenue to confer standing on petitioner because it is a nature of general averment to redress a perceived harm to the general public as opposed to actual or imminent danger of being harmed. Said the SC: “Courts do not sit to adjudicate mere academic question to satisfy scholarly interest therein, however intellectually solid the problem may be.”
He should have first applied for a marriage license and if denied he has already a cause of action and standing. But he will still lose because of constitutional/codal provisions which state that marriage is essentially between man and a woman only. IOW, only amendments can override it.
Pepe: I see. Thanks, Sam. I think we are in the same boat here. But consider my response to this whole thing (including Obergefell), just to bounce off you my thoughts and tell me what you think:
“Our laws are clear. The Family Code only recognises the marriage between a man and a woman,” presidential spokesman Herminio Coloma Jr said on June 26. “Same-sex marriage by Filipinos in a foreign country will not be recognised in the Philippines.” He said the Civil Code of the Philippines states that “laws relating to family rights and duties or to the status, condition, and legal capacity of persons are binding upon citizens of the Philippines even though living abroad.”
Like in the US and elswhere, Atty Falcis is asking the Supreme Court to re-define marriage from it’s common sense meaning evident in the Family Code.
“Falcis… argued that limiting civil marriages and the rights attached to these unions to heterosexuals violates…”:
1. “the constitutionally guaranteed protection for equal treatment”
Chief Justice Roberts dissent in Obergefell, quoting Justice O’Connor in Lawrence v. Texas, he argues that “the marriage laws at issue here do not violate the Equal Protection Clause, because distinguishing between opposite-sex and same-sex couples is rationally related to the States’ legitimate state interest in preserving the traditional institution of marriage.” In fact the only reason why the state is interested in marriage is because wheter intentionally or not, children (new citizens) come from a complementary sexual union of a man and a woman. Thus, the state understands that marriage is a lifelong union between one man and one woman to be husband and wife to each other and father and mother to their children. By this, the state recognizes the right of a child to be nurtured by those responsible for her existence.
2. “undue interference to liberty rights”
Justice Thomas in his dissent states how wrong liberty was understood by the majority opinion. He says “in the American legal tradition, liberty has long been understood as individual freedom from governmental action, not as a right to a particular governmental entitlement.” Taken to mean privacy and noting precedents, Chief Justice Roberts notes that “the privacy cases [such as Griswold, Lawrence] provide no support for the majority’s position, because petitioners do not seek privacy. Quite the opposite, they seek public recognition of their relationships, along with corresponding government benefits. Our cases have consistently refused to allow litigants to convert the shield provided by constitutional liberties into a sword to demand positive entitlements from the State.” Claiming marriage to be an “undue interference to liberty” and yet seeking to join this institution is wrongheaded and absurd.
3. “and marital autonomy”
So which one is it really? You want the government out of the marriage business, by asserting autonomy (self-governance with respect to marriage) and yet you want in that very same state-sanctioned institution? These are contradicting claims as well as some noted that in the sloppy SCOTUS majority opinion maintains an “antiquated view of marriage” as something like a magical nobility and dignity-conferring spell, as if their constitution has a clause on it let alone government grants these (Justice Thomas), “utterly disconnected from the realities of America today” moving towards “a post-marriage future.” Others note it’s odd that all the same leftists who think marriage is an evil patriarchal institution want its “dignity” extended to gays and lesbians.”
The Family Code states in Art. 11: “Where a marriage license is required, each of the contracting parties shall file separately a sworn application for such license with the proper local civil registrar which shall specify the following:…(3) Age and date of birth; (4) Civil status; (5) If previously married, how, when and where the previous marriage was dissolved or annulled… ” and Art. 35 (4) “Those bigamous or polygamous marriages not failing under Article 41.”
In effect, the Family Code discriminates against (3) minors getting married, (4) (5) and Art. 35 (4) already married person who may love another – polyamory and adulterous relationships, regardless of how much love these consenting adults have.
Also, in Art. 37: “Marriages between the following are incestuous and void from the beginning, whether relationship between the parties be legitimate or illegitimate…” and Art. 38 enumerates not only consanguinity but even non-blood-related (illegitimate) persons, the code considers it incestuous.
In effect, the Family Code in Art. 37 discriminates against incestuous relationships, regardless of how much love these consening adults have.
To summarize, in effect, the Family Code, brought to the logical conclusion of Atty Falcis’ claims, violates “the constitutionally guaranteed protection for equal treatment, undue interference to liberty rights, and marital autonomy” of not only LGBT but persons in incestuous, adulterous, polyamorous and polygamous sexual relationships. This is an inescapable conclusion that follows from a ruling like Obergefell.
Once again, Chief Justice Roberts catches the SCOTUS majority opinion in this saying: “Although the majority randomly inserts the adjective “two” in various places, it offers no reason at all why the two-person element of the core definition of marriage may be preserved while the man-woman element may not. Indeed, from the standpoint of history and tradition, a leap from opposite-sex marriage to same-sex marriage is much greater than one from a two-person union to plural unions, which have deep roots in some cultures around the world. If the majority is willing to take the big leap, it is hard to see how it can say no to the shorter one. It is striking how much of the majority’s reasoning would apply with equal force to the claim of a fundamental right to plural marriage. If “[t]here is dignity in the bond between two men or two women who seek to marry and in their autonomy to make such profound choices,” ante, at 13, why would there be any less dignity in the bond between three people who, in exercising their autonomy, seek to make the profound choice to marry? If a same-sex couple has the constitutional right to marry because their children would otherwise “suffer the stigma of knowing their families are somehow lesser,” ante, at 15, why wouldn’t the same reasoning apply to a family of three or more persons raising children? If not having the opportunity to marry “serves to disrespect and subordinate” gay and lesbian couples, why wouldn’t the same “imposition of this disability,” ante, at 22, serve to disrespect and subordinate people who find fulfilment in polyamorous relationships?”
Now, we do recognize polygamy (with mutual consent) and almost-child marriages with (minimum 15 years old, with parental/guradian consent) in the Philippines when our country recognized Shari’a Law with PD 1083 of 1977 for our Muslim countrymen. This did not extend to Mormons though and it does not apply to the rest. The Family Code enshrines this existing law in its Art. 33.
Atty Ferdinand Topacio proposed amendment to the Family Code based solely on Art. 147 (common law marriages and cohabitation) to expand the law. Note that here he is arguing for same-sex civil unions for the “recognition and acceptance by the law of such type of relationship – the protection of the civil rights of the partners in a same-sex relationship as it pertains to assets and properties that may have been accumulated during such coverture.”
Chief Justice Roberts in his dissent parallels this idea of a narrow ruling saying:
“It is important to note with precision which laws petitioners have challenged. Although they discuss some of the ancillary legal benefits that accompany marriage, such as hospital visitation rights and recognition of spousal status on official documents, petitioners’ lawsuits target the laws defining marriage generally rather than those allocating benefits specifically.
The equal protection analysis might be different, in my view, if we were confronted with a more focused challenge to the denial of certain tangible benefits. Of course, those more selective claims will not arise now that the Court has taken the drastic step of requiring every State to license and recognize marriages between same-sex couples.”
Finally, and interestingly, the Family Code does not include, in Art. 11, Art. 35 etc, a prohibition based on gender, obviously because it already deems common sense, that marriage is between a man and a woman: “Marriage is a special contract of permanent union between a man and a woman entered into in accordance with law for the establishment of conjugal and family life. It is the foundation of the family and an inviolable social institution whose nature, consequences, and incidents are governed by law and not subject to stipulation…”
So I think we always have to be clear what we mean when we say “marriage” that it is, as the state recognizes for its purposes, a life-long union of one man and one woman to be husband and wife to each other and father and mother to their children. The state recognizes that more than just a unique biological union that produces new citizens, it is best environment in which these new citizens are nurtured, and the people, through the state, do not and should not want anything less.
Sam DeAsis: Scholarly done, Pepe! I am reminded during the Alecks Pabico’s days (he’s resting in peace now) at PCIJ Blog with him as moderator. I was then a regular ‘poster’ (under another name and we communicate directly in the sidelines) when a topic interest me. With Alecks’ passing and Shiela Coronel’s acceptance of deanship of Columbia University’s journalism school, PCIJ has been “orphaned” of its ‘father and mother’ and went ‘adrift’ and like many, I left too. How I wish that posters are guided by a desire for the enrichment of knowledge through the free exchange of ideas rather than bashing each other just because opinions collides.
I have nothing more to say except that I think Coloma’s statement is not clear about same sex marriage of Pinoys abroad. He should have made distinction whether the Pinoys are already citizens abroad or not. I think when Pinoys became citizens of say, U.S. and married in a State where same sex marriage is valid, the Philippines has no option but to recognize because they are no longer Filipino citizens. However, there is a legal issue if they avail of R.A. 9225 or Dual Citizenship because they become Pinoys again and should be bound by Philippine laws. What shall we do then? Shall we retract the recognition or treat them as mere ‘union’ only instead of marriage?
As regards Shari’a Law marriages- I’m entertaining notions to be a Muslim once I hit the lotto. I can then marry four or five young women!
Pepe: Thanks Sam! Wow, you worked with PCIJ before! Salute! Your comment on Coloma’s statement is interesting to me: “the Philippines has no option but to recognize because they are no longer Filipino citizens”, I’d ask though, under what conditions or circumstances will the Philippines be “forced” to recognize a same-sex marriage? It certainly would not be necessary for incorporation and business setup, maybe if they are on a working/employment visa here i.e., non-immigrant visas and quota immigrant visas, or perhaps in buying property? (But the 60-40 economic provisions of the constitution may need to be amended first for US citizens to be able to purchase land, and I think even in that case, we may have other ways out, such as treating the relationship as business partnerships instead). LOL on you and Sharia Law marriage wish!! But I realized that it somehow already created a hole in the laws and provided a special treatment of a certain group of citizens in order to tolerate/respect a Muslim way of life. I’ve always thought, that’s really what LGBT activists want: special treatment, no matter how much they say it’s just “marriage equality”; and more insidiously (my opinion, and other international gay activists have admitted), the objective is to dismantle the institution itself, that makes the content of Obergefell–all those paeans to dignity and human rights conferring power of romantic love–hypocritical at best. Anyway, thank you very much for your time, Sam!
Other articles related to this are:
SC same-sex marriage petition: First step in a long road ahead
As long and as difficult as this road may be, the journey has already started for marriage equality in the Philippines
To which I responded:
Thanks for your opinion, Shakira! Appreciate that these events open the discussion for everyone. What is ‘marriage’ after all, right? We do have different ideas and we are all free to express it. The slogan “Marriage Equality” seems vacuous and misleading. Equality of individuals, regardless of sexual orientation is a no-brainer, everyone is equal, individually. However, when it’s about marriage, are we even sure that gay couples, polyamorous/adulterous setups, incestuous couples, are “equal” to the traditional one-man-one-woman relationships for the purposes of the state (which is interested only in the natural fruits this traditional setup produces – new citizens)? So, in this sense, asking for same-sex marriage is tantamount to asking for special priveleges, not equal rights. We cannot really say that “no compelling state interest exists to limit civil marriages to opposite-sex couples” when it’s nothing more than pushing for recognition of a particular adult relationship of our choice.
I see/hear “Separation of Church and State” too often when it’s really irrelevant. The Catholic Church is a private organization pushing for their opinion on state laws just as much as any other “rah-rah” group out there in Mendiola. You and I may not agree with their opinion but it is just as their right to lobby government as much as we can.
True, that in the RH Bill we saw “bigots and religious fanatics among our lawmakers”. But the existence of such “most ridiculous” comments from BOTH sides doesn’t deny sound arguments, though in the minority, against what is being pursued now and back then. I can only hope we all open our eyes and see beyond ad hominems etc.
“Evolve or become obsolete” that’s terrible, right? But then again, of course we have differences in our opinion of what “progress” looks like. After all, the so-called “Dark Ages” wasn’t really. It was just a pejorative term used with much bias in the 18th Century. “Which side of history” is another complex question, we all hate being the “bad” guys, right? But, those who show tough love may have also been considered “bad” guys of history. Some may never even be vindicated. But yes, that’s a cost to holding to the ideas you deem correct and hold true. These come off as petty rhetoric when we examine deeper the issue at hand.
It is the duty of the parents to teach the next generation “who will inevitably lead this conversation when it eventually comes to a head” about critical thinking and I can only hope these “children and teens” will learn to see through the noise and rainbow ruckus. Mrs Clinton is right, laws do have a teaching/pedagogical effect and it can teach the wrong things as we have seen throughout history, after all, ideas have consequences and bad ideas have bad consequences and so we must tread very carefully and examine issues beyond ultimately empty slogans.
It is good that we are talking about it and I agree these “discussions cannot be silenced”, not even by ad hominem charges of bigotry, etc. It is also a big opportunity for “the opponents” to speak their minds and hopefully some, if not most, will think more critically about it. It seems with all the majority opinion you cite here, it seems braver “young souls” will have to be on the other side, try not to “keep them in the dark” and keep the discussion going, because as in what happened to the RH Law, others have tried, but thankfully failed, to silence opposition to the law. We see this coming in the next few years, too often activists do ad misericordiams then end up in ad baculums which will eventually get some mouths, “eyes and ears closed forever” by force of law.
I am, of course, alarmed at the numbers with regards to these majority opinion in Ireland, The US and elsewhere. But majority opinion is nothing, really, I can only hope it is a more-informed majority opinion, but by what I see online, I may have to entertain my doubts. Fallacies remain fallacies even when they become fashionable.
SC asked: Allow same-sex marriage in PH
The 31-page petition highlights the need for a more LGBT-inclusive society and is the first known and reported legal action of its kind before the Philippine High Court
To which I responded to the top comments here:
Rand Althor: Just give it some time and continue the support. The generation causing inequality is slowly fading away and millenials are taking over 🙂 I pray they would know better. Be wise and cultivate the future generations to know better.
Pepe: Sure, give it time. My hope is that these “millenials” who are “taking over” be educated in thinking about the issue critically – that marriage is a package. It’s about the adults but it is also always about the state understanding that these opposite sex adults intentionally or unintentionally give rise to children and we need them to stay married, to rear those kids into good citizens. The argument for the traditional/natural definition is simple: “If there was no intrinsic link between sex, procreation and family there would simply be no need for society to promote and protect faithful, permanent, lifelong sexual relationships.” The traditional view of marriage recognizes basic facts: Sex is not merely for pleasure, affection and romance. Whether we like it or not, the correlation of sex and having children is high (There is no guarantee that a man and a woman cannot have children, while there is a guarantee that two men or three women cannot naturally do so. Therefore, society, by the state, encouraged and protected sexual relationships which are suitable for procreation – a union which can create new life and support new families. That’s the point. To those who say that a redefinition of marriage does not affect anyone at all (except those who are seeking to ‘join’ the institution), be not mislead. Chief Justice Roberts, during the April oral arguments for Obergefell said “you are not seeking to join the institution. You are seeking to change what the institution is. The fundamental core of the institution is the opposite sex relationship, and you want to introduce to it a same-sex relationship.” So does civil marriage, for the purposes of the state, infringe on any fundamental human right? That is the legal question Obergefell tried but miserably failed to answer and it has even turned the US constitution on its head doing so. Apparently, it does not. Treating something essentially unique as marriage in a unique way is not discrimination. Therefore, we are not, in effect, denying the same rights to LGBTs when we treat a unique institution such as marriage in a unique way for the purposes of the family and state. Marriage laws do not discriminate on the basis of sexual orientation anyway. They have a disparate impact on gays, certainly, but that is not the court’s test. Marriage laws do not discriminate based on orientation is that they simply do not require checking someone’s orientation at all in determining whether that person will receive the benefits of civil marriage. Thus, under man–woman marriage laws, a gay man may marry a lesbian woman, while two heterosexual men cannot receive a marriage certificate from the state. “Marriage equality” as I maintain elsewhere is another misleading, if not outright deceptive slogan, people seem to “blindly follow” this too, as it is “unacceptable reasoning” to me. Do we really think that one-man-and-one-woman relationships are equal with one-man-one-man, two-men-one-woman, three-sisters, ten-brothers, one-man-and-a-harem? With respect to the state purpose of civil marriage where new citizens are natural fruits, and in view of a strong and orderly society, there is no comparison here. The most robust studies consistently show that children do best when a mom and dad are present. Why should we as a society wish otherwise. Before US president Obama, so-called “evolved” on this issue, back in 2008 he said “We know the statistics: that children who grow up without a father are five times more likely to live in poverty and commit crime, nine times more likely to drop out of school, and twenty times more likely to end up in prison. They are more likely to have behavioral problems or run away from home, or become teenage parents themselves. And the foundations of our community are weaker because of it.”
Didier Santos Marsac: I believe that although lots of Filipino are tolerant, as written earlier, the Philippines is a country where religion is still very important and lots of politicians claim that they are not in favor of marriage equality, the fight is going to be tough. However, I fully support the Philippines and I encourage the Filipino LGBT organizations to keep fighting. Don’t give up, please keep going! The fight is going to be long and tough but keep in mind all the Lgbt Filipinos and Filipinas that still believe in you. What you guys are doing is never useless! Now, I suggest you to focus on how gay, lesbian and trans people are perceived in the Filipino society and wonder if the existence of gay people badly affect the society. Answer, no. It doesn’t change the society. Gay and lesbian Filipinos and Filipinas go to work, to school, to college, pay their taxes, go shopping, hang out with their friends just like any other citizens of the Philippines. In fact, they are Filipino and Filipina citizens of the Philippines and as such they must have the same rights than the rest of the populations. They deserve to create a family just like any other citizens in the country. And if that happens, the society will not be destroyed because there will have the same amount of gays and straights. Why? Because homosexuality is not a desease. It is not a sickness that may contaminate people. It is a sexual orientation. A part of our identity. Because we are still human beings, normal people. I hope this is mentionned in the petition. All my support from France! xoxoxo
Pepe: It is never about homosexuality but about what is marriage. I don’t think marriage laws deny gays marriage benefits based solely on being gay (as activists like so much to imagine) in the same way that marriage is rightly regulated against polyamorous/polygamous and incestuous relationships, in Obergefell, Chief Justice Roberts cites former Justice O’Connor in Lawrence, in writing that “the marriage laws at issue here do not violate the Equal Protection Clause, because distinguishing between opposite-sex and same-sex couples [might I add incestuous and polyamorous/polygamous couples] is rationally related to the States’ legitimate state interest in preserving the traditional institution of marriage”, which is what I state above. It simply means we treat something unique in a unique way. The sexual relationship of one man and one woman is the only one capable of producing new citizens. People who cannot procreate (infertile and old people) seem to be discriminated in this reasoning but they still model the biologically complementary partnership, and when they adopt, they provide the same ideal environment for these new citizens. There is also no guarantee that a man and a woman cannot have children, while there is a guarantee that a man and a man, or a woman and a woman, cannot naturally do so; It is a consistent basic biological fact that all children have a male father and a female mother. A common sense reason why heterosexual parents are the gold standard and ideal environment to rear new citizens is because a mother and a father being biologically complementary bring to the table unique sets of perspectives, ways of thinking, physical capabilities etc., simply by the biological/anthropological nature of their different gender; for example, I usually refer to breastfeeding as having more than just physical benefits to the baby. Moreover, I argued for biological parenthood that further reinforces this idea, children in homes where both biological parents are present tend to do better than adoptive homes for many reasons such as natural connection, genealogical connection, psychological and emotional effects of genetic connections. You see all this point to the truth that mothers and fathers are irreplaceable in a child’s life. That’s why I ask everyone to consider this: “Do we really think that one-man-and-one-woman relationships are equal with one-man-one-man, two-men-one-woman, three-sisters, ten-brothers, one-man-and-a-harem?” clearly, the answer is “no”. I think we always have to be clear what we mean when we say “marriage” that it is, as the state recognizes for its purposes, a life-long union of one man and one woman to be husband and wife to each other and father and mother to their children. The state recognizes that more than just a unique biological union that produces new citizens, it is best environment in which these new citizens are nurtured, and the people, through the state, do not and should not want anything less.
Philo Lehmar: Some serious questions (I don’t ask these rhetorically):
– What reasons are there for legalizing same-sex marriages *that also don’t give us reason to legalize polygamy and/or heterosexual same-sex marriage*?
– If marriage is merely about love, why should the government have any interest in it in the first place? But if marriage has some connection to children and family life, then it isn’t surprising that the government would have an interest in marriage, since children and the quality of family life have an effect on society.
Would love to read your answers on this. Thanks.
Zafiro Bourdeaux: It’s a little bit more complicated than that.
Should an infertile female be allowed to marry a fertile male?
Should a straight elderly couple be allowed to marry?
Should a straight couple who don’t want to have kids be allowed to marry?
Two adults (two equals) who love each other and want to be committed should be allowed to marry. Simple as that.
Why are you the judge of a child’s quality of family life? I can definitely tell you that quality is not solely dependent on one male and one female parent. It depends on two parents (or even just one if it’s a single parent family) who know how to love and take care of their children.
Serious: Please take time to read this article: http://whygethitched.com/2015/05/20/understanding-marriage-procreative-partnership-v-romantic-coupling-a-response-to-national-review/
Philo Lehmar: Yes to your first two questions, as to your third question, it depends (they might change their minds). The traditional view doesn’t say that procreation is required for marriage, but that marriage is the kind of relationship that is *naturally oriented* toward procreation, whether or not procreation actually occurs. But I don’t wanna explain the traditional view here, I want to learn about your side 🙂
You say that “Two adults (two equals) who love each other and want to be committed should be allowed to marry. Simple as that.” Why think that?
You ask “Why are you the judge of a child’s quality of family life?” I’m not 🙂 But I’m not sure your comment answers my second question – If marriage is merely about love, why should the government have any interest in it in the first place? In other words, how can we explain the involvement of government in marriage throughout history if marriage were simply about love?
Again, thank you for your comment, I sincerely want to learn about your side 🙂
Richard Silvestre: i think the proper question is not: ‘should two people of the same sex be INCLUDED in the state-sanction marriage’. rather: ‘WHY should two people of the same sex be EXCLUDED in the state-sanctioned marriage’
the equality clause in the constitution assures every individual fairness under the law. there SHOULD BE A REASON why a state deprive some individuals the same right as everyone else. for example, when you commit a crime, the state would deprive you of liberty and you will end up in jail. (interesting note, you will still be allowed to marry LOL.)
those who oppose gay marriage suggest that the state has an interest in keeping marriage between a man and woman for two reasons you have mentioned: 1. procreation; 2. children’s welfare. the first reason can be easily demolished by the fact that a couple don’t have to undergo a fertility test before they can get a marriage contract. the second reason is rather gray area and studies are still being done as to how children of same sex couple fare compared with those of straight couple. recent studies, however, show that there are no difference whatsoever (these studies are cited during the same sex legalization oral arguments in the us supreme court last april.)
also to answer your questions:
You say that “Two adults (two equals) who love each other and want to be committed should be allowed to marry. Simple as that.” Why think that?
-that’s how it works for straight people. why shouldn’t it apply to gay couples?
If marriage is merely about love, why should the government have any interest in it in the first place? In other words, how can we explain the involvement of government in marriage throughout history if marriage were simply about love?
-marriage, as a purely state-run affair, is not only about commitment and about love, it’s about sharing wealth, visitation rights, end of life decisions, etc. that’s why the government has vested interest in couples who want a marriage contract.
Philo Lehmar: You say, “the first reason can be easily demolished by the fact that a couple don’t have to undergo a fertility test before they can get a marriage contract.”
Interesting point. Will think about it 🙂
You also say, “the second reason is rather gray area and studies are still being done as to how children of same sex couple fare compared with those of straight couple. recent studies, however, show that there are no difference whatsoever”
On one hand, a recently published article by Loren Marks surveyed 59 studies supporting the no-difference thesis, and found that they were all deeply flawed by sampling and design problems, problematic statistics, and unjustified generalizations to the larger population. On the other hand, several recent studies (I linked about it in another comment here) falsify the no-difference thesis.
You later write, “-that’s how it works for straight people. why shouldn’t it apply to gay couples?”
My question is: why shouldn’t it also apply to polygamous relationships, or to heterosexual same-sex relationships? (Yes, some straight men have tried to marry each other, believe it or not.)
Lastly, you write, “marriage, as a purely state-run affair,”
What do you mean? And why think that marriage is a *purely* state-run affair?
Thank you for your long comment, I appreciate it 🙂
Serious: You have very good questions there. I agree with you on the”love” part. Our law does not even require that the contractingparties “be in love”. So why even use that argument? Let us not even try to include it in our law. You don’t wantthe state questioning your integrity. At least our lawmakes distinction (or as some prefer to say: discriminate) on the sexuality ofthe contracting parties (man and woman) but it does not discriminate based onlevel, quality or even lack of love between the parties. That said, the LGBT’s real issue is on the former:distinction on sexuality. Seriously, the “we love each other”argument is a very cheap shot when it comes legal matters.
Zafiro Bourdeaux, you just said “Two adults (twoequals) who love each other and want to be committed should be allowed tomarry. Simple as that.” I’d say that is a very sweeping and simplisticargument. That is not going to help the LGBT community. If adopted, that wouldbe a very vague law. And we know what happens to vague laws–they get abusedmore than the others.
Here is a good argument. If a gay couple (not married justcommitted) decides to adopt a child, without similar law on conjugalpartnership gains afforded to legal marriages, the child will not be able thegain full benefit of the wealth (support) of the couple. Or let’s remove anychild in the picture, just the the two of them. If your partner dies, there isno legal basis for yout claim to his/her properties. If you want these, thenI’d say a legal union might be more appropriate and easier to gain than marriage(in our existing law).
If the LGBT will insist on the “love argument” andsocial acceptance, I think appealing to the state law on marriage does notmatched with these.
These arguments might work with the church and the Filipinofamilies. These two makes the most distinction or discrimination with regard todifferent types of unions and relationships. You may argue that with a passage of a law social acceptance will simply follow but I’d say you don’t know Filipinos at all–or people in general for that matter.
Pepe: These are great questions that will make the issue clearer. What is marriage after all, right? The slogan “Marriage Equality” seems vacuous and misleading. Equality of individuals, regardless of sexual orientation is a no-brainer, everyone is equal, individually. However, when it’s about marriage, are we even sure that gay couples, polyamorous/adulterous setups, incestuous couples, are “equal” to the traditional one-man-one-woman relationships for the purposes of the state which is interested only in the natural fruits this traditional setup produces – new citizens? So, in this sense, asking for same-sex marriage is tantamount to asking for special priveleges, not equal rights. We cannot really say that “no compelling state interest exists to limit civil marriages to opposite-sex couples” when it’s nothing more than pushing for recognition of a particular adult relationship of our choice.
Manuel Moreira: Marriae as it is today is completely different from what it was years ago when women were seen as property for example.
Definitions change, right now the ones with privileges are straight people since they can marry while LGBT Filipinos can’t!
As an European with the luck of living in a civilised society I wish the LGBT* Filipino community much luck
Pepe: Hi Manuel! Definitions change? But definitions comprise of essential and non-essential properties and the definition of marriage has the essential property of being a union of a man and a woman. It used to have the non-essential property of coverture before, or yes, perhaps in other cultures women are seen as goods, but I argue that those are non-essential properties added to marriage so can be easily shed. So when we think about the essential properties of heterosexual, exclusive (just two) and life-long union (already undermined by divorce), heterosexual couples are certainly “the ones with privileges”, but for good reason, it simply the objective of the state to protect the family and to make sure every child (read: future citizen) is taken cared of by one man (father) and one woman (mother) which is the best possible environment for children. Now another dimension to it is that philosophically the danger is if definitions do change, marriage may mean eventually to be between a corporation and a woman, a man and his dogs, or a child and her parent, a building and a mouse and a woman and herself. But let’s not go there even in speaking of just within legal boundaries of personhood and consent, having privileges does not mean you are infringed of rights to your preferred relationships be it two men, two women, three women, twenty cousins, adulterous, incestuous relationships, these are all allowed in society but why should the state grant them the same privileges? So people are equal but relationships clearly aren’t as the state sees it. So as I said in the above, “equality of individuals, regardless of sexual orientation is a no-brainer, everyone is equal, individually. However, when it’s about marriage, are we even sure that gay couples, polyamorous/adulterous setups, incestuous couples, are “equal” to the traditional one-man-one-woman relationships for the purposes of the state?”, not really. So, I maintain that “asking for same-sex marriage is tantamount to asking for special priveleges, not equal rights.”
Finally, I my Family Code references that I bounced off Sam was from this article:
Respond to same-sex marriage petition, SC asks gov’t
The Supreme Court en banc asks the Civil Registrar to respond to a petition filed by a young Filipino lawyer, who identified himself as openly gay