New York state just passed a law allowing homosexuals to marry and on the surface it seems like a very fair thing to do. The homosexual community has lobbied vigorously to say that it was unfair that heterosexual couples were given unfair tax treatment as well as survivor benefits that were not afforded to them, even though they were in the same type of relationship. Although homosexuals can enter into civil unions, and by law can decide how to pass on their inheritances, the homosexual community was not content with that-they wanted civil unions to be redefined as marriage.
To me words mean things, there is a reason we define words. The definition of marriage is the following:”The formal union of a man and a woman, typically recognized by law, by which they become husband and wife.”
This definition of marriage is widely recognized across cultures, across religions and the definition has stood the test of time. Yet in one full swoop the NY legislature decided to change what the definition of marriage is to now include homosexual relationships.It seems pretty arrogant for a legislative body to now have the ability to change what words mean.
In George Orwell’s fictional book 1984, the author goes in great length to detail to discuss the significance of being able to change the definition of things. The book is really an in depth view of a totalitarianism government that rewrote history, controlled individual lives and oppressed its own people. As Archbishop Dolan recently said “If big, intrusive government can re-define the most basic, accepted, revealed truth that marriage simply means one man+ one woman + (hopefully) children, in a loving family, then I’m afraid, Orwell’s works will no longer be on the fiction shelf.”
This blog for the most part is about finance but unfortunately the politic landscape has changed so much that its hard to talk about finance without talking about politics. When GM went bankrupt a few years ago, GM did not go through the normal bankruptcy channels. In a normal bankruptcy, debtors have first claim on the assets. In GM’s case, that precedent was thrown out the window; another way to say it as that the definition of bankruptcy was rewritten. The union employees were given much greater control of the company while creditors were treated much worse. In one fell swoop bankruptcy precedent was set aside for political purposes.
For laws and society to function properly the way we define things should mean something and be honored. The rejoicing of a change of a definition of a word should cause us all concern, just ask the debt holders of General Motors how the redefinition of bankruptcy suited them.