Thursday, June 04, 2009

New Hamphire Passes Gay Marriage Bill

New Hampshire became the sixth state to legalize gay marriage Wednesday in a move that reflects the state's changing demographics from reliably Republican and conservative to younger and more liberal.

The Senate and House passed key language on religious rights, Gov. John Lynch - who personally opposes gay marriage - signed the legislation Wednesday afternoon.

Lynch, a Democrat, had promised a veto if the law didn't clearly spell out that churches and religious groups would not be forced to officiate at gay marriages or provide other services. Legislators made the changes.

One of the great principles behind the concept of federalism is that states are free to try policies which they believe to be good. As other states see those policies unfold, they are also free to decide whether or not those policies are right for them. Thus, government itself is subjected to, and limited by, the power of competition, which is merely the freedom of individuals to choose for themselves. If you believe that gay marriage is a good thing, then allowing states to choose for themselves allows them the freedom to adopt this good idea, and any other good idea, despite national opposition. If you think gay marriage is a bad idea, then allowing states the freedom to try it will provide further evidence that it's not a good idea. Either way, the entire country benefits when states and individuals are free.

Of course, those who don't believe in freedom despise the concept of federalism. Those who hate federalism want to restrict the freedom of people to choose in all areas because they do not want to risk being left behind.

Repealing the 17th Amendment would strengthen federalism, protect liberty, and encourage the development of more good ideas from which we can all benefit.


Stephen said...

Government has no business getting involved with marriage. Since marriage is a religious contract, government should stop issuance of all marriage licenses. Do you need to have a license to have intercourse, or live together, so why have a license to marry. I for one want government out of marriage, and maybe when it is the the act of spiritual marriage will improve.

On another note, I not sure I understand how the article or your posting contribute to the cause of the 17th Amendment?

JohnJ said...

Well, I was trying to explain that when states are more free to try things with which others disagree, then we all learn from their success or failure. Since government should stay out of marriage (and I agree), allowing those people who think government should regulate marriage to try will allow them to learn from their own mistakes. If people with bad ideas are not allowed to try them, then those bad ideas will become more popular and eventually threaten the entire country 9as we have seen). Repealing the 17th Amendment would strengthen the sovereignty of states, allowing them more freedom to implement their own ideas, and succeed or fail on their own merits. Repealing the 17th Amendment would allow bad ideas to burn themselves out before threatening the entire country.

At least, that's what I tried to say.