Kokomo Tribune; Kokomo, Indiana

Opinion

May 9, 2014

LETTERS: Writer on to something; bottle deposit laws don't work

Tribune letter writer is on to something

I am very much a traditionalist. So when I read Jeff Hatton’s letter in the May 6 issue of the Kokomo Tribune, I was somewhat incensed. However, after giving it some thought, I decided that Jeff is on to something.

Just what interest does any government (federal, state or local) have in defining or controlling the arrangement we call marriage? A visit to divorce court will illustrate that government is interested in only two things — distribution of assets and the welfare of children.

Assets are distributed every day in courts dealing with bankruptcies and terminated business relationships. Why then must the government have any interest in domestic partnerships other than the assets, and perhaps the revenue generated while the partnership is viable and disposition of the assets when the partnership dissolves?

The government collects revenue from individuals, partnerships, corporations, etc., in order to provide services for citizens. Domestic partnerships could be treated in the same way. This might give government more latitude in structuring tax policy.

There are already child welfare laws on the books, which could address the needs of children in a dissolved partnership. Since some individuals produce children without bothering to get married, the child welfare laws would apply equally to all children, regardless of the status of the parents. Adopted children would be addressed in the same legislation.

Under this concept, judges would have much more latitude in deciding what would be in the best interest of the children. Also, such archaic concepts as the biblical reference to women being the “weaker vessel” could be put to rest, and women would be treated as equals in the deliberations.

If a couple feels a need to solemnize their relationship before a clergy who represents whatever belief system they choose, they may do so by accepting the doctrine of the body and participating in the prescribed ceremony. Hence, government has no interest in defining or participating in marriage and the First Amendment concept of “separation of church and state” is preserved.

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