07 March 2010

Don't Let The Terrorists Win: A Capitalist Theory of Same-Sex Marriage


So say the billboards that loom over part of my daily commute into and out of Mobtown. The words jump out, brightly illuminated by the sun or floodlights, depending on the time of day. These trite phrases are accompanied by huge, full-color photos of a beautiful couple smiling bovinely into the camera as if wedding clothes and a cameraman hovering over them were the neatest thing since being told now they could have sex since they were married.

Couple in this context meaning man and woman. The billboards are sponsored by some sort of 'Save The Family and/or Marriage' type outfit, who believe that marriage can only mean God-approved gender relations.

Yes, the traditional (which in this country means "Western/European/American/Christian") definition is a union between a man and a woman*. But the definition of marriage varies quite a bit, through time and across cultures. Some of those definitions include same sex marriages, some say nothing of procreation. With that in mind, I noted to myself the first time I saw those billboards did not say "Marriage between a man and a woman Works" or "Married men and women Make More Money."

The first billboard doesn't mention human beings at all. The second says "PEOPLE".

Married PEOPLE Make More Money. Hmm.

I think that is probably true. But gender roles are not essential to making money. Making money depends on skill and training and character and environment and sometimes luck. My theory is that married people make more money** because they are more likely to be in a stable relationship with shared interests, coupled with a desire to be together out of love.

Stable, loving relationships are also not defined solely by gender roles. They are defined by the character and interests and abilities of the people involved to make them work.

So let me get this straight: 

Marriage works, and married people make more money.
Married people make more money because they are in a stable loving relationship.
Those relationships are not solely defined by gender roles, but by the character of the people involved.

SO...Married people = more earned money = bigger tax base + discretionary income.

Thus, same-sex marriage could be a much needed boost to the economy. Talk about a stimulus plan, look at the potential gains to be had in granting equal rights to a huge untapped demographic!

Gee whiz, with all the economic woes facing the country, you'd think the 'pro-business, less government' conservative *coughRepublicancough* folks would be all over this, wouldn't you? Especially since if more people had more money to spend on consumption, the terrorists have even less of a chance to win!

*It bears pointing out that in much of Western history, marriage was more about solidifying economic and political ties than it was about a romantic notion of "Three-makes-family". So spare me the platitudes about fulfilling God's design...unless you mean that design was for the greedy and manipulative to force their worldview on everyone else for the sake of gain.
**Assuming that is really true. I'm very skeptical of the methodology and criteria that the advertising organization used to make that claim. Statistics and data can be bent in many ways.


  1. I have no problem with same sex marriage. I once heard a cynical friend sum this up by saying "If they want to be miserable like the rest of us, then have at it."

  2. The whole 'protecting traditional marriage' movement makes me want to say swears.

  3. I have to wonder if people that marry farm animals may not make more money necessarily, but have more disposable income.

    Of course you could make the argument that married couples make more money because when living in perpetual misery the prospect of getting away from their partner for extended periods of time at an undisclosed work place has new and surprising appeal in their lives.

    I actually believe this whole increased income babble in a propigated myth to keep us under the thumb of capilist enslavement.

    How about all those successful prostitutes making hand over fist loads of cash by simply staring at the ceiling and making a few grunting sounds. Sure, much of this is unreported income, but from a purely capitalist prospective it's one glaring blissful example of success outside the chains of ever lasting "take the damned trash out Honey" matrimonial bliss.

  4. Wasn't money the original initiative behind marriage—doweries, landholdings, global partnerships? Originally, I don't think marriage was about people at all. In the Bible (Adam and Eve), marriage is all about sex: go forth and procreate.

  5. I think the problem stems from the infusion of the religious status (marriage) with the state's/society's need for cohesive family units. If we could get the states to declare all current marriages to be "civil unions", the problem would go away. If two people wished to be married, they would ask their church to perform the ceremony. If two (or more) people wished to be recognized as a civil union for purposes of the state's benefits for that then they simply petition the state for that status. One status would not preclude the other. And, thus, we would have separation of church and state and also have equal status for all.

  6. Anyone who thinks married people make more money never benefited from being a one-half of a couple who are both divorced and filing as "head of household."


  7. when one says "better off," are they always referring to financially better off, or just better off emotionally, mentally and physically??

    i don't think i would be "better off" if i were married......in any sense of the phrasing


"Let your laws come undone
Don't suffer your crimes
Let the love in your heart take control..."

-'The Hair Song', by Black Mountain

Tell me what is in your heart...