Is Civil Marriage a Right?

Last week the European Court of Human Rights ruled that same-sex marriage is not a human right guaranteed by the European Convention on Human Rights. In addition, according to The Daily Mail's write-up of the case, the court ruled that if gay couples are allowed to marry, any church that offers weddings will be guilty of discrimination if it declines to marry same-sex couples.Before I get to the main point, I have to say that last part struck me as bizarre. There's not a Catholic church in … [Read more...]

Fancy a spot of Sharia law?

I've returned from AAAS (jet lag and all) and I'd like to take a crack at one of the questions you guys posted in the Marriage Q&A post (if you've thought of a new question, I'm still watching that thread).  Gilbert asked: As far as I get it covenant marriage rests on the state refusing covenant-violating divorces. Otherwise it would be exactly like ordinary civil marriage: a promise of life-long commitment that can easily be broken without repercussions. So I suppose you support a separate … [Read more...]

Whaddya Wanna Get Married For?

Sorry this is late, but what could be better on Valentine's Day than pouring kerosene on a fight about marriage? This post is part of a debate on gay marriage.  In the last installment, my friend Matt argued that endorsing gay marriage means endorsing the foundations of divorce culture.  So now it's my turn to be prescriptive about marriage.  To start with a recap of what kind of marriage Matt opposed, let's go to the videotape (John Barrowman in Company):We'll look not too deep, We'll g … [Read more...]

Submitting to Others

This is part of a series on covenant marriage, and, hopefully, it’s becoming clearer what this all has to do with virtue.How do you know that you’re not a psychopath?The simplest check on your sense perception (moral or physical) is checking with others to see if they have the same observations as you. If you diverge, you have to weigh the odds that you are the lone sane person in a crazy world. If you’re seeing auras that are invisible to everyone else, you probably have a migraine, not … [Read more...]

Exercising Self Control

This post, as counter-intuitive as it seems, is part of a series on covenant marriage. It probably won’t be clear why for one or two more posts.How do you guarantee that you’re going to stick by your convictions and principles?This January, you’ve probably seen plenty of articles talking about online services meant to hold you to your New Year’s resolutions. The most famous of these is Stikk which lets you set goals and pay forfeits if you can’t achieve them. Users often arrange to pay t … [Read more...]

Evolution is Not Destiny

This post is part of a series about covenant marriage. After reading yesterday's post about two married people who left their spouses, Hendy of technologeekeryhad a question: Why are humans inclined toward romantic monogamy? Heck, there might even be genes for monogamy and an inclination toward cheating! Interesting findings. I by no means think genes = predetermination. My genes would have me hoard fat (especially) and sugar because historically they were more likely to benefit survival... … [Read more...]

What Marriage is Not

This post is part of a series on covenant marriage.Over winter break, a controversial profile appeared in The New York Times's Vows column.  The NYT featured a pair of newlyweds who had left their previous spouses and broken up their original families in order to be with each other.  The article drew a lot of criticism from both sides of the culture war.  Here are some choice excerpts from the profile:But it was hard to ignore their easy rapport. They got each other’s jokes and finish … [Read more...]


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