I was bewildered by this LA times article over the weekend describing the latest tactic of the DOMA defenders planning to argue before the Supreme Court, that is, that marriage is necessary for heterosexuals only because of the possibility of accidental child bearing.
Marriage should be limited to unions of a man and a woman because they alone can “produce unplanned and unintended offspring,” opponents of gay marriage have told the Supreme Court.
By contrast, when same-sex couples decide to have children, “substantial advance planning is required,” said Paul D. Clement, a lawyer for House Republicans.
This unusual defense of traditional marriage was set out last week in a pair of opening legal briefs in the two gay marriage cases to be decided by the Supreme Court this spring.
Am I taking crazy pills or does this make absolutely no sense? At the same time, I had just read (via Gawker)
this marriage announcement:
Ada Laurie Bryant and Robert Mitchell Haire were married Saturday in Hockessin, Del. Robert L. Bryant, a Universal Life minister and a son of the bride, officiated at his home.
The bride, 97, is keeping her name. She graduated from Lesley College in Cambridge, Mass.
She is the daughter of the late Ada Lee Laurie and the late Richard Laurie, who lived in Hingham, Mass.
The bride was a widow and the groom a widower.
The couple met in 2007, when Mr. Haire and his first wife, Jean, moved into Country House, a retirement community in Wilmington, Del. Mrs. Bryant had lived there since 2001 with her first husband, Leonard, who died shortly after they moved in. Mrs. Bryant and Mrs. Haire became close friends.
On Jan. 25, 2012, Mr. Haire, a hobbyist poet, slipped a sonnet vowing “friendship and affection” beneath Mrs. Bryant’s apartment door with a note that said “this represents how I feel in our relationship as a couple.” He was afraid to give it to her in person.
“I was desperately trying to strike a balance between too timid or bold. I didn’t want to mess things up,” he said about the courtship. “I can attest that it doesn’t get easier even in advanced age.”
Mrs. Bryant finally accepted his proposal on Aug. 6, and they will move into her apartment (“It’s slightly bigger,” he said) after the wedding.
She explained why she first turned him down. “There’s a great difference in our ages, as you can see,” she said. “I didn’t think it was the thing to do because I don’t have that many years ahead of me, but he said, ‘That’s all the more reason.’ I like him very much. I love him. So we’re going to be married.”
It’s all very sweet, finding love and getting married at even such an advanced age. But by the logic of the DOMA advocates, these two shouldn’t be allowed to marry because there is no chance of offspring.
Can we really defend this law by saying marriage is only for procreation when so many examples abound of how it clearly is not?
42 thoughts on “Anti-Gay Marriage Argument makes no sense”
So why not have the state get out of the marriage business completely?
Then you have whatever service you want, and its all down to contract law.
Mr. Clement’s arguments are not intended to persuade you or me. His intended audience is the Supreme Court justices, several of whom are at least nominally Catholic and therefore, in Mr. Clement’s opinion, potentially persuadable on this point. He has some track record of success in that regard.
But yes, I agree that he hasn’t really thought this one through. If this argument prevails, what would stop potential heirs from objecting to the second marriage of a parent or grandparent after that person’s first spouse dies, particularly if the second spouse’s family ends up with the inheritance? (Not a hypothetical in my case–a relative re-married a few years after his first wife died, both spouses being in their 70s at the time, and the second wife outlived him by enough to inherit his estate.) According to Mr. Clement’s argument, the second marriage would indeed be invalid if both parties knew that the woman was post-menopausal at the time of the marriage. Somehow, I doubt that most gay marriage opponents would find anything objectionable about such a marriage (there may be a few who do, whether as a logical extension of this argument or for other reasons).
This argument would also appear to disqualify men who had had vasectomies and women who had tubal ligations from becoming married, since neither can “produce unplanned and unintended offspring.”
This argument has been around since day one. Its only purpose is to show that there is some conceivable rational basis to draw the line between gay and straight couples. It’s not a good reason, but if the Supreme Court settles on the minimal rational basis review [like for general business laws, eg], they can hang their votes on this whacky rationale. The correct level of review is much higher because there is a long history of discrimination having nothing to do with ability to contribute to society, and the choice of a consenting adult marriage partner is a fundamental right. Thus the government must prove that this discrimination is essential to a critical governmental purpose.
I wish they had used the argument that marriage always approves and allows procreation (even of elderly and infertile couples) and that we should not approve or allow people to procreate with someone of the same sex. The analogy should be to siblings and other relationships that are prohibited.
We should not equate the right to procreate naturally with using sperm donors or using lab-created artificial gametes to enable true same-sex conception. The former is a basic human right, the latter two are not rights at all and should be prohibited.
Allowing a loophole for my grandmother to get away with marrying while no longer being able to procreate is quite charitable. How about my brother-in-law, whose paralysis makes “procreating naturally” impossible? Thanks to medical science, he and his wife were able to have a beautiful baby boy this year.
We should most certainly equate the right to procreate naturally with the right of loving couples to bring children into this world by any means possible.
More importantly, we should not consider the ability to bear children a legal criterion for marriage at all. If that were to happen, there would have to be so many exceptions for reproductively challenged couples as to render the entire proscription moot.
Bigots can’t be allowed to hide behind these disingenuous arguments about children. They must be forced to say out loud that they simply believe gay peope like me are less deserving of basic human- and legal rights JUST BECAUSE WE’RE GAY.
It’s thankfully getting harder to find decent people, or Supreme Court justices, willing to state it so simply.
If you guys say so, but I think as #6 points out, this is such a bizarre contortion, it can’t do anything but weaken their stance. Tens of thousands of infertile heterosexuals getting married each year seem to create a Grand Canyon-sized hole in this argument.
Two words: marriage penalty. If the state wanted to ensure that a couple were encouraged to get married should they become pregnant, it wouldn’t start taxing them more. It’s proof the whole theory that this is about procreation and not about anti-gay bias is bupkis.
Oh, I get it! There IS a connection between polygamy and marriage.
If every guy who got a gal pregnant, had to marry her – well, then there’s all the polygamy that’s been talked about.
I get it!
How, exactly, is this even remotely connected to a gay couple getting married. No shotgun weddings there.
Let’s call it Pairriage for same sex and give it its own set of laws.
Hetereosexual marriage is not the same as homosexual marriage – FACT
Historically marriage was between man and woman – FACT
All marriage and divorce laws are between man and woman or husband and wife- FACT
There is a DIFFERENCE in many ways (reproductive, sex, consumation) – FACT
Jeff “We should most certainly equate the right to procreate naturally with the right of loving couples to bring children into this world by any means possible.”
No we should not, because they are not equal. The right to procreate naturally is indeed a right that must be protected, while using donor gametes or artificial gametes is not a right at all. So equating them means saying there is no right to use your own gametes because the right to procreate is satisfied by using donor gametes. That’s bad.
“More importantly, we should not consider the
ability to bear children a legal criterion for marriage at all. If that were to happen, there would have to be so many exceptions for reproductively challenged couples as to render the entire proscription moot.”
Correct, ability has nothing to do with it, it’s entirely about approval to procreate, not ability.
If marriage were about procreation, campaigns to ban gay marriage would be all about that. Instead they’re all about “them gay people are a comin’ fer yer chidlens!”
Yeah, it’s anti-gay bias, plain and simple.
Katie, I am situationally identical to that if my parents. My parents could not bear children of their own. They had to adopt. Absolutely everything in our lives is organized exactly the same. The only difference is they could marry. My partner and I cannot. This “it is because that’s the way it has been” is an intellectually devoid idea. Slavery, bans on interracial marriage, denying women’s right to vote, all of those could be justified by tradition. It didn’t make them right.
No, historically it was between a man and women (read your bible more closely bible thumpers), it was more of a property contract between two men, women were chattel, didn’t really have any input, rights, etc. Marriage for romantic love is a new innovation, and marriage as a partnership as it is today is extremely modern. It’s an evolving relationship that bears no resemblance at all to its historical origins, and to deny people the benefits that it confers on a relationship due to sexual orientation is a violation of equal protection. It’s creating a second, unequal class of individuals that is denied an opportunity based on their sexuality.
Admit it, you just don’t like gay people, and don’t approve of them being mainstream.
So what? So we change the laws. Who cares if their relationships are different (and how does consummation not exist for a gay couple?) Heterosexual people get married for all sorts of reasons, tons are married who physically can not procreate, do not want to procreate, or who are too old to procreate. Marriage provides a host of legal benefits to a pair.
To create a “separate but equal” institution is a non-starter. To deny these benefits to one class of people, and not another is unjust.
“They had to adopt. Absolutely everything in our lives is organized exactly the same. The only difference is they could marry. My partner and I cannot.”
@Joe Your parents were approved and allowed to attempt to procreate with their own genes, to conceive offspring of their own genes mixed together, because they were a man and a woman, and not related by one of those prohibited relationships. Neither of them were approved to do that with someone of the same sex, nor should you and your partner be approved to do that today, nor should you ever be, because it is inherently unethical and entirely unnecessary and would be too expensive and risky and undermines the basis of equality.
Historically marriage was between man and woman – FACT
You keep using that word. I do not think it means what you think it means.
There has never been a time when marriage has been considered in all places to be between one man and one woman. As mentioned above, many polygamous households are mentioned in the Bible. The Koran explicitly allows a man to have as many as four wives, provided he has the resources to support all of them. In some cultures it is still common for families to arrange marriages–the present generation in India is the first in recorded history for whom selecting a marriage partner any other way has been even thinkable. And some European countries and US states have modified their laws to allow same sex marriage. Some states (including New Hampshire, where I live) have even done so without courts ruling that they must do so.
The right to procreate naturally is indeed a right that must be protected, while using donor gametes or artificial gametes is not a right at all.
It may be possible to defend this statement, but you have not done so–you have merely asserted that it would be bad and “undermines the basis of equality” (without explaining how it would). It also does not reflect current reality in the US. You are in fact allowed to use donor gametes, provided you can pay for the treatment. Granted that biology restricts this to couples with at least one female–but what is your rational basis for allowing some females access to this procedure, but not other similarly situated females, merely because the latter have female rather than male partners?
Rights are found in history and nature and are not just granted whenever someone wants to be allowed to do something, especially something involving the creation of people. Society has always regulated marriage and procreation and there has never been a right to procreate outside of marriage and always been a right to procreate within marriage. There has never been a right to use donor gametes, it was considered adultery and never allowed.
The way allowing genetic engineering and donor conception undermines the basis of equality is by denying the premise on which rights are based, the proposition that all people are created equal. The way all people are created is by sexual reproduction, a man’s sperm fertilizing a woman’s egg. If we start creating people from genetic engineering then it is no longer true, some people are now created on purpose from screened and engineered gametes, while others are still created as the offspring of their mother and father. It not only creates people literally unequal with better and healthier genes, it destroys the notion that all people are in the same boat, just the natural offspring of their mother and father and completely destroys the basis of equal human rights, which is our equality of creation.
I don’t think donor conception should be limited to male-female couples, or even married couples, I think it should be abolished completely. It is not a right of marriage or a right of single people either.
“how does consummation not exist for a gay couple?”
because, as any stupid teenager will tell you, blow-jobs and anal don’t count? 😉
“Society has always blurgle blargle…”
which society in particular are you referring to here? because unless you’re using a really *really* specific definition, what you wrote is quite hilariously wrong. even if you’re limiting yourself to a Eurocentric cultural heritage.
John, you missed my point. As with me, my parents were incapable of conceiving a child through their own means. Therefore there is absolutely no difference in our relationships, other than the fact that they are able to marry and I am not.
No, I got your point. My point is that ability or desire to procreate is irrelevant to marriage, as your parents prove, and that what matters is being ALLOWED AND APPROVED to procreate, as your parents were. People should not be allowed or approved to procreate with someone of the same sex, it should be prohibited, like procreating with a sibling is prohibited, and couples that are prohibited from procreating are always prohibited from marrying. The individuals are not prohibited from marrying, they just have to find someone eligible. Siblings are not eligible nor should same-sex couples be.
John, you cant connect incest to gay marriage. that’s like the French Archbishop in this article, http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-europe-21243875
and you guys have been talking about reproductivity in connection with marriage as a whole. while i agree that marriage is associated with marriage, they dont have to co-exist. there are people who have children with a boy/girlfriend but refuse to marry that person or a married couple refusing to have kids. Reproduction and Marriage are only connected through what people regard as tradition. In today’s society, it’s widely excepted for people to get married soley for LOVE. so why should the fact that it’s two woman or two men make a difference if they love each other? laws will always change. this is why we have the concept of amendments in our constitution. The Founding Fathers knew that change is inevitable, why is it hard to accept that homosexuality is as real as heterosexuality? and for those male and females who find two of the opposite gender kissing or having sex kinda hot, you should be the LAST people arguing against Gay marriage. Most of us has went through this phase and should be able to understand this. and in the end, if a homosexual couple wants to get married, how is their personal affairs any of your business to begin with? i don’t see gays arguing that heterosexuality is wrong and try to persecute you just because you’re different from them. Last i checked, there’s a such thing as RESPECT and PRIVACY. No one cares if a heterosexual couple wants to adopt regardless of their ability, but if a homosexual couple wants to adopt and have their own family it’s “Oh No! That’s Wrong! Hell Has Frozen Over!” and then there’s people who take it as far as to physical violence just because they don’t approve. Does anyone else see the injustice?
in my opinion I don’t judge anyone and no one in the gay community. But I do believe as a Christian that gays have every right to be together and I also believe that it shouldn’t be as publizsed
No its the libbys who make no sense, marriage should be between one MAN and one WOMAN. Marriage is for bringing god’s children into this world, it is the union of two peopel of different sexes, it is PROVEN by modern science. The libbys say that we want marriage to be between a man and woman because thats what the Bible says. Well I follow the bible, but the evidence is overwhelming, we see it all the time that gay marriage is harmful to society, and the ‘poltically correct” liberals just cant see it because they dont want to, to them everyones ok, no matter what you do.
Why do libbys not think of the children, if the children dont have a FATHER and MOTHER, they dont grow up well. Socoilogy proves this again and again, see the link for proof:
If we let the gays marry each other whats next, will we let a brother and sister marry each other, or a man and a child? Or will we lose our morals, and collapse as a society? If we let people do what they want, whether or not its moral, why not let them rob? Or murder? Not that it matters since americans seem to be ok with letting the traditional family break down. Go ahead, let gays marry. When the family breaks down, there will be violnece in the streets, because children wont have two parents to look after them. And they say conservatives are stupid, no its libbys who dont think, theyre so “open minded”.
re John Howard @ 17 – WTF?
Is that really the reason why anyone has rights, because they were created by the same exact* (*inexact usage of ‘exact’) process?
How about we’re supposed to be nice to each other because we’re sentient beings, etc, etc.? We shouldn’t be so hung up on how we got to be here. I never understood the notion that our origins so dictate our morality – it makes no sense. It is our nature, the physics of cause-and-effect coupled with moral valuation of effects that determines right and wrong (or less right and more right, etc.); how could it possibly be otherwise? We’re supposed to do good because it’s good. We’re supposed to treat each other as equals (in the sense it is meant here) because we are equals (in that sense). How would even deliberate genetic choices in offspring (which is rather far removed from gay marriage, and it’s not my intent to offer a broad general defense of it) affect equality – that sort of equality which is refered to in the context of justice? Maybe it could, but you’d have to at least get to a point where you could tell somebody was distinctly different from human in a relevant way. Can you spot test-tube babies?
As for law – no, of course nobody has the right to use donor gametes – you have to ask permission! Rights are a social construct which I think can be justified from the (moral) cost-benifit analysis of it. Moral agents don’t always make the best choices but there is a moral cost to losing freedom (and legal margin of error) as well as the problem that not every choice can be efficiently and best made mapped out via central planning (though it has it’s place!; drive on the right or left – imagine … well that’s off on a tangent). I don’t think God decreed upon us our rights; ‘God’ (?, then big bang followed by physics and natural biological evolution) made us with such properties that it becomes a good idea that we should allow ourselves those rights. In fact those rights can be taken away in the sense that they can be infringed upon without recourse should such a government arise (but of course that’s not what people mean when they say rights can’t be taken away – they mean they should not, or that
God would not want it so – well, you know what I mean). –
Sorry, I didn’t have time to read past that comment and really wanted to get that off my chest.
PS 1st commandment translated into secular: Keep your priorities straight, don’t forget the big picture.
This isn’t a Poe? There are still people out there who use crazy caps and just claim Science! Really? Hysterical.
The link is to an article which cites no data or science that suggests that the ideal is heterosexual parents. The data and actual SCIENCE says children of same-sex parents do just as well as children raised by heterosexual couples.
No one has been able to defend this strategy as sane. No one believes marriage is only for procreation (screw you grandma), no one can provide data that shows children raised by homosexual parents fare worse (some shows they do better, probably due to the exact bias described by the initial argument that they are planned), and in the end this boils down to bigotry.
Get over it or just die already. No one in the modern world is upset about homosexuality anymore.
clarification: If a parent were to deliberately choose to create a blond or a brunette or a red-haired child, would you know it from seeing the child? No, because those variations exist already. You would only see it if there were a tendency in choices made – if a weak tendency or a small portion of reproduction being as such, many generations would have to elapse (PS I’m not defending doing such, though.) Likewise, there are already genetic variations in health. And some parents may choose not to have their own genetic offspring because of their DNA-related risks, and setting aside the issue of making that choice post-fertilization (not saying it’s wrong or right, just don’t want to get into it right now) that’s perfectly fine.
PS consider the case of an orphan who has the option of being raised by a homosexual couple who already know him/her (perhaps relatives) or complete strangers. Of course complete strangers can become family – but why do that when you already have family? (assumption that all else is well – not abusive, etc.)
big bang followed by physics – I mean subsequent physical processes (making stars and planets and all that, GHGs and Rossby waves, etc.); physics presumably started at the big bang or… oh, I’m a little fuzzy on that one. Seriously out of time now, bye.
So some pointyheaded scientists say gay marriage isnt bad, big deal. I have to wonder who exactly is it thats funding this research of theirs showing that. Do we know what their true motives are, or do we even know the hidden agendas the scientists might have, its wouldnt be the first time that scientists put out work with the clear intention of promoting a political agenda, remember the climategate emails? But I bet we still believe in golbal warming, despite that
Its clear to those of us who arent so open minded our brains fall out what should be clear to you libbys who love to quote science. Scientists dont agree on everything, and this issue is NOT settled, and besides Ill take the views of people who raise familys and have children over the views of a bunch of ivory tower libbys any day.
There is a movement in america that will destroy our traditional values, people are turning away from God because they want to do things that are evil and we are becoming morally bankrupt and immoral but its all ok in the eyes of the libbys because theyve turned away from god, they think they know whats best for all of us.
And thus, denialism is born. It’s great seeing it from its inception like this. You don’t like the results of a scientific study so it’s a conspiracy! All those scientists are fabricating data, all their peer reviewers are idiots, all their conferences are just to bake up grand lies etc.
Nonsense. But this is pretty classic for those curious to see how people fall in the trap of anti-science. All science has to do is say something that conflicts with their overriding ideology (homophobia in this case), and it’s the science that must therefor be wrong. Never the individual, no. It’s the entire enterprise of fact finding by people looking at numbers, and data, and patients that must all be lying, I can never be wrong.
Its no use arguing with people who just call you names, I guess I should have known better, try to prove a point, and the libbys will just say youre like a holocuast denier. It works both ways, its clear that youre the one in denial, like most of the rest of the sheeple in this country.
We have a president who takes away our freedoms and destroys our traditional values, gets rid of morals, all going on, and yet nobody wants to admit it, congress just about passes a treaty taking away american sovereignty and giving it to the UN. But I guess thats what happens when people dont have morals because they dont follow Gods commands. Keep destroying our moral fabric and see what happens to american society, it will collapse for sure. Which is probably the goal of libbys, so the UN will take over and well have that one world government they want so they can tell people what to do.
re lewis @ 30,32
“remember the climategate emails?” yep, I remember. Do YOU remember? Like how when it was all put back into context, it was okay? Like how there was no wrongdoing found (except of course by the hacker(s?) and the parts of the media that jumped to the wrong conclusions)? (PS conservatives – stop bearing false witness against your neighbors! 🙂 )
(and of course it’s not all settled (the science) – which is why scientists are still employed! But just because you don’t know everything doesn’t mean you know nothing. Just because you don’t know whether it’s 2.5 or 3.5 doesn’t mean you can’t be pretty sure it’s more than 1.5, etc. And when we don’t know for sure, does it really make sense to put all your money on the slimest of chances? (Wouldn’t it be helpful to reduce the range of uncertainty so planning is easier? – for example, by reducing the (change in) forcing.) If you don’t believe the scientists then maybe you should get some controllable wavelength source of radiation and measure how absorption and emission change over a path of ~ 10,000 kg/m^2 of air as composition and temperature are varied, etc, at each wavelength. At least look at OLR spectra as measured from satellites.)
There is a movement in america that will destroy…
Gee, slavery abolished, women’s suffrage, got rid of Jim Crow laws, saved the environment parts 1+2, gearing up for reducing gun deaths, less discrimation and saving the enviroment part 3 … seems to me we’re getting closer to God, not farther away (and hey, I’m not saying those are the only good things. Obviously the materialistic side of raising quality of life has been great- although that’s not entirely independent of equality and saving the planet). If only those pesky Koch brothers weren’t trying to get in the way !:) – PS in no way I am suggesting you’re against all those things – only the last bit it seems, although religion has been used as justification for being against earlier changes.
By the way, asserting God’s on your side – kinda breaking commandment 2 (or 3? I mean the name in vain one) – although I guess I just did the same thing. (PS bumper sticker idea: Conservatives talk about God’s will, liberals get it done – too much?)
You’re the only one who brought up the Holocaust.
“so the UN will take over and well have that one world government they want so they can tell people what to do.” – As opposed to what you want to do – establish a theocracy and tell others what to do? Or let environmental degradation and overpopulation lead to collapse of civilization and anarchy, so that nobody can tell you what to do (which wouldn’t work by the way – anarchy is an invitation to tyranny). Of course you don’t (?)- and liberals aren’t all in some-such conspiracy either.
Even better! The classic “you say I’m denying something therefore you’re calling me a holocaust denier!” trope. No, we’re saying you’re denying science. All denial isn’t holocaust denial, but nice try to inject more drama into the debate. This is then followed by the new crank imaginary persecution scheme that Obama has somehow ceded US sovereignty to the UN.
No Lewis, I didn’t call you holocaust denier, but I will call you something else. You are a Crank (read the HOWTO). I mean, you’re beautiful. You hit like every single criteria like you read the HOWTO before commenting. You’re defending a scientifically untenable position while saying its PROVEN by science (you have awesome use of the CAPS LOCK), you then drop the awesome insane Obama UN conspiracy theory, all while self-persecuting yourself as being labeled a holocaust denier.
It’s great really. Keep it up! Let’s see if he compares himself to Galileo next, I’m so excited!
Patrick youre just doing what the libbys love to do about global warming, they say its happening, that scientists agree, that were stpuid for not drinking their cool aid. Science has been wrong before, scientists have been shown wrong again and again when they try to say whats going to happen, no warming at all, but its suddenly supposed to be hot all of a sudden, but its not. Where is the evidence that there is warming, Steve MacIntyre PROVED theres no warming since 1934, the pointyheaded scientists keep saying there is, but there is no EVIDENCE of warming, lots of evidence of the sun, mars and jupiter are getting warmer too, so its probably just the sun. And its natural, the world was warmer in the past, and people didnt drive suvs then. Anyone should see its not real, but since the libbys dont like suvs and cant stand people driving them, they want to tell people not to drive them, so we suddenly have global warming!
Its all part of the UN becoming more and more powerful, I guess some of us want to stay in denial about it, but some of us are afraid of where the countys going and are not afraid to seek the truth. Of course, its only expected, that you wont see what is right in front of you, after all, most people thrughout history are the same way, not many people actually come up with new ideas, and when they do they always run against those who dont believe them and say their crazy. So I guess were the same way here, cant see what is right in front of youre nose
It is proven FACT, but I wont say more.
Also, why do you keep talking about God, its like the libbys think theyre doing Gods work or something, but then they refuse to follow the Bible, which says homosexual is an ABOMINATION, do you really have faith in God? I wonder, I have faith, and I know I am right, I know what God expects of us, I know what will happen if we dont keep Gods commandments, and no, it dosent mean that its ok to ignore laws simply because we dont like them, we have to follow morals as revealed to us, we dont get to choose what is best for ourselves, or else we would all be relativistismists.
Mark I should have known thats the kind of immature thing Id get in response, but its no suprise, after all, clearly it makes sense, the science shows that support for gay comes from immoral behavior,
Just proves me right after all, the moral fabric is being destroyed in this country, and were in denial about it. See what i said to patrick, but it applies here, they say Im wrong, that gay is ok today, that Im a “denier’. Well go ahead, when America loses its morals and collapses, well see who it was that was right. It wouldnt be the first time in history, they said that Columbus would never find any land so much time after the creation of the world, and look how history decided them.
-oh, when I said a path of 10,000 kg/m2 of air, that’s vertical; radiatiant intensities can be found in all directions; path lengths through any given horizontal layer will increase away from vertical; you have to calculate intensity for each direction and then integrate over solid angle to find overall upward and downward radiant energy fluxes per unit horizontal area.
oh, my faith? I suppose for me God is in a state of quantum-superposition between being and not being – by the way, quantum uncertainty works both ways in time and so if you go with the Everett interpretation, a universe created by God and a universe that arose spontaneously could have merged (or crossed paths?), so such a superposition could be considered a real scientific possibilty – except Occam’s razor tends to cut out dieties – introducing God into a scientific explanation is at best simply pushing the question back a step with no benifit and can be is a bit like building a Rube Goldberg device if you specify too many unknowns about God – like if s/he doesn’t want you to eat lobster on Friday while wearing a toga and the wrong hair style.
Actually I am closer to not believing in God rather than believing, but to some extent I know the values of the God I would believe in because another version of God would just be wrong. (For me, my moral compass (would) points to my God. I suppose for some others, their God points to their moral compass.)
re lewis @ 35-36 and my 37-38: “Of course, its only expected, that you wont see what is right in front of you, after all, most people thrughout history are the same way, not many people actually come up with new ideas, and when they do they always run against those who dont believe them and say their crazy. So I guess were the same way here, cant see what is right in front of youre nose”
– well, unfortunately that last section of wikipedia requires some verification, but if it is true, Columbus was wrong; the establishment was right. No one (relevant to this point, at least) anticipated the Americas – how could they? (that last part is an example of being right to be wrong, in the sense that it would make no sense to assume a large landmass was there, having no known evidence of it).
Now, Galileo was right (mostly, so far as I know – something I recall about an error in one of his ideas about the tides…) – at least about Jupiter having moons, and astronomical objects not being ‘perfect’, falling objects, etc. The Catholic Church (not a scientific establishment) condemned him for it. Later, other(s? – sorry it’s been awhile since I’ve read or watched on TV the history of astronomy) were right about the Earth going around the Sun (well, technically the Earth-moon system and the Sun orbit a common barycenter). Newton was right about gravity governing the ‘heavens’, and that light was waves – even though Einstein was right about relativity and also that light was particles (see, Einstein didn’t overturn the previous science so much as modify it a bit – important at a fundamental level, but in many common situations we can do just fine without relativity).
Question: Should we now assume that the next would-be revolutionary must be right, and that Einstein, Newton, Copernicus, and Galileo and Eratosthenes were actually all wrong? Now that the view that the Earth is quite young has been overturned, must we assume that the idea it is quite old will also be overturned? Now that the old view that humans couldn’t have much effect on atmospheric CO2 has been thoroughly torn to shreds, must we now accept that it will be restored by the next paper that measures some unexplained anomaly? (Sometimes anomalies are just the results of other anomalies.)
(that last part is an example of being right to be wrong, in the sense that it would make no sense to assume a large landmass was there, having no known evidence of it). – oops, no, bad example; they also shouldn’t assume it was 100% ocean all the way or just small islands; perhaps they could have used Bayesian priors…? (and I’m not sure how that would work out).
… also missed the last part about reports of Vinland… anyway, enough for now.
re me @ 37 “effects thermodynamics of perovskite phase transition – and yes, I suppose I’m just trying to impress you now)” – in case that could be misinterpreted, I was jokingly conveying that I was aware I was adding more details that necessary; …’just showing off’ might have been more accurate … anyway, seriously, phase transitions in the mantle are interesting.
… Also forgot to mention that the coriolis effect changes over geologic time as the Earth’s spin slows down; rapid enough rotation would tend to add more extratropical storm tracks and associated jet streams. … see:
Schneider, T., 2006: The general circulation of the atmosphere. Annual Reviews of Earth and Planetary Sciences, 34, 655-688. http://www.clidyn.ethz.ch/papers/annrev06.pdf
Also, re my 38, myself aside, while many liberals – and scientists – don’t believe in God, I think plenty of liberals – and scientists – do believe in God. They would still tend to disagree with you (lewis).
Actually, in America, procreation with a sibling is not actually prohibited. Marrying them is, but procreation isn’t covered in any laws. If one or both parties is underage, there may be a statuatory rape charge, but the actual baby is allowed to be born, and ordinarily the parents even retain parental rights. This isn’t China, after all, where the state can arrest you for procreating, fine you, jail you, and even order you to get an abortion. No, here the laws pertain to the marriage only. Regardless of what the original intent of them may have been, that’s the reality of it.
Now, there *did* used to be laws governing procreation in the US. In some states, people deemed unfit could be forcibly sterilized. This was for the purpose of eugenics, and while originally it was supposed to be for the “feeble minded”, it came to be applied mainly to minorities and teen mothers. I do not think you want to align yourself with that sort of thing.
Honestly, I think this is an extremely disturbing line of reasoning — not a defense of marriage, but an assault on the right to procreate by saying the state should have to sanction all reproductive matings. That’s a very creepy and disturbing path to take.
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