“Kind of relationships”

One of the difficulties faced by anti-marriage pro-discrimination advocates in their attempt to argue that the law should discriminate against same-sex couples in marriage law because “marriage should be limited to those who can procreate” is that even a cursory examination of marriage as understood and practised throughout the world today would throw up many, many childless married couples for whom not having children turned out not to make their marriages meaningless after all.

So they have to try to find a way to distinguish between these childless but married heterosexual couples and childless but MUST NOT BE MARRIED homosexual couples.

And one superficially-appealing way of doing that is by talking about the “kind of relationships” that produce children. Trying to define a broad category so you can ignore the contradictory examples as outliers.

On closer inspection, it doesn’t work at all.

First, it doesn’t explain how it is that we don’t bat an eyelid at childless marriages, which you’d think we would if child-production and child-rearing were an essential element of marriage. Are these marriages real marriages or not? If they are real marriages, then there must be more to marriage than children and the absence of children can’t possibly be a ground to prevent other couples from marrying. If they are not real marriages, then where’s your proposal for the law to start insisting on fertility licences?

(It’s like the polygamy thing – if you’ve seriously got a polygamous proposal in mind, people who keep raising it in order to avoid discussing gay marriage specifically, put it up for us to assess. Because by asserting one “must” follow the other, the slippery slope assumes there’s no significant difference between the proposals, that there are no big problems with polygamy not present in gay marriage. If there are, then we could easily have one and not the other. If there aren’t, then those problems must be present in the gay marriage proposal, in which case COULD YOU TELL US WHAT THEY ARE? If you have to raise polygamy, then the clear implication is that the problems are NOT present in same-sex marriage, and therefore would be a reason to block polygamy even after we pass same-sex marriage. Which of course is why anti-equality advocates will never actually specify what is wrong with the polygamous proposal they imagine – because it would immediately demonstrate why it’s fundamentally different from gay marriage, and implode their “slippery slope” assertion that it “must” follow it. Like the “childbearing is an essential part of marriage” line, the “polygamy will follow gay marriage” assertion isn’t a real argument the people raising it genuinely believe – it’s just there to muddy the waters.)

Secondly, the level at which you draw your “kind of” general category is completely arbitrary. Maybe this Venn diagram will help:

kind of relationships that produce children

You can say that each of those categories, at different levels of specificity, are “the kind of relationships that produce children”. But it’s entirely arbitrary to draw it at any one level. If you’re going to accept relationships that don’t produce children – which by extending marriage beyond the smallest pink circle you already are – then why stop at the level of gender? If you’re going to include marriages where the participants refuse to have children, and then above that the broader category of marriages where the couples are infertile, then why not include same-sex couples where the couples are infertile?

If child-rearing is an essential element of marriage, then what is the justification for arbitrarily drawing the line at one of these levels and not another?

The anti-equality anti-marriage people have no answer to that, because they aren’t trying to make marriage more about children, they’re not trying to discourage infertile people from marrying unless they’re gay, and they’re not trying to encourage couples with children (which includes gay people) to get married. They are simply looking for plausible-sounding excuses to justify discrimination against gay people they really want for much baser reasons they can’t describe in public.

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159 responses to ““Kind of relationships”

  1. Great post Jeremy.

    They have no answer because there is no logical answer. I would say this to my fellow Catholics: If you believe that marriage in our legal system should equate to marriage as recognised by the Church then why do you not also lobby for a ban on divorced people re-marrying?

    The point is that we all should be grateful to live in a society that tolerates diverse views. One of the great things about liberty is that people get to choose how to live their lives. And precisely because liberty ought be defended at all costs it is hypocritical and wrong to attempt to restrict the liberty of others to conform with our private beliefs.

  2. One of my favourite ironies in this debate is the polygamy slippery slope. Notice how it is generally only certain religious groups that seek polygamy (some Islam interpretations, mormons, etc). They also only seek it for heterosexuals – never MMM or FFF polygamy. They also generally only seek it for (MFF) polygymy (no MMF). This is due to a complete subordination of women in those cultures/sects to being tradable commodities (which, in their defence, has more of a biblical basis than oppositon to gay marriage).

    So the dominant groups seeking polygamy are also anti-woman and anti-GLBTI rights. Those that are anti-gay marriage refuse to justify how one leads to the other but demand that gay-marriage advocates justify how it will not. Well, we aren’t going to be the ones arguing for it so why should we?

    The other personal favourite irony is the child ‘rights to both parents’ arguement. Yet the same group argue for tougher penalties for crimes. None join the dots – if the child has a right to both parents are we to then use this as a mitigating factor in sentencing? Say, parenthood forces all custodial sentences to be suspended? (or in Vic really really long corrections orders). That’s a lot of litter collection.

  3. Good response SB. I’d also add that if marriage is to conform with the definitions of the bible: aetheist couples should not be allowed to marry, nor marrige with an ‘opposing’ religion, nor marriage where the woman is not subordinate; and polygamy should be ok because of the numerous bibilcal examples. Thus it is biblical marriage that creates the slippery slope. Think David…

  4. The problem with your argument Jeremy is that it has no logical gaps at all – thus rendering our comments essentially redundant.

    Your position is so self-evidently true that meaningful debate becomes impossible and all we get here are dumb-asses whose contributions are generally on par with “God didn’t create Adam and Steve” or my personal favourite “you’re all so interested in this issue that you must all be gay”. It’s the only political debate I’m aware of where one side genuinely struggles to generate any coherent argument to support them.

    It would be funny if the practical result wasn’t the continued legal discrimination against an innocent section of our community.

  5. Your position is so self-evidently true that meaningful debate becomes impossible

    Sadly at least some have missed it. I’m not sure I have the patience to dig through this bloke’s concerted effort to confuse matters.

    He’s not “anti-marriage”! He’s just anti the marriages we’re talking about!

  6. zaratoothbrush

    What you’ve got to understand, Jeremy, is that the appeal to antiquity fallacy has been around forever, which thus makes it true, evidence not required. Such weasel words: I think I prefer “God hates fags” to his sort of argument, it’s probably a truer statement of his feelings anyway.

  7. Here you go: same-sex couples shouldn’t be ALLOWED to conceive children together, because it is better public policy to prohibit attempting to conceive offspring with someone of the same sex than it is to allow it. It doesn’t matter whether they are able to or not (as you’ve been saying) what matters is whether they are approved and allowed to try.

    There is certainly no human right to conceive offspring with someone of the same sex, so it’s purely a pragmatic question of whether it is a good idea to allow it or not, and considering the risks and costs and fact that it is entirely unnecessary, the answer is obvious.

  8. it is better public policy to prohibit attempting to conceive offspring with someone of the same sex than it is to allow it

    Just like it’s better public policy to prohibit inter-racial marriage than it is to allow it.

    I mean once you consider the risks and the costs and the fact that it is entirely unnecessary it’s, like, totally obvious.

  9. You’ve made a lot of assertions there JH and yet not one ounce of evidence or even argument to back it up. WHY is it better public policy? Because it suits you to be so? Just like it suited men to subordinate half the population due to their gender or how it suited whites to enslave blacks? Why JH?

    What risks and costs? How are they any greater than a heterosexual couple? Consider the domestic violence rates are so great in heterosexual couples that it is the number one preventable admission into hospital for women and the number one cause of preventable death and disease for women (Source: Vic Department of Health; VicHealth; Australian Parliament report on Domestic violence in Australia).

    The reality is that there is NO evidence to support your claim. If you honestly believe a child has a right to a male and female parent (notwithstanding that homosexual couples often involve the other gender parent at the same or higher rate than a heterosexual couple using donated sperm/eggs)? If that is the case, are you also arguing that being a parent should be a mitigating factor in sentencing for crimes such that they cannot be taken into custody because the child has a right to the parent? Of course not – because your argument is based on what suits your own prejudices. Not on what is real or beneficial to society.

    Marriage benefits society – regardless of the gender/sexuality of the couple. Just like voting benefits society regardless of the gender/sexuality of the couple. It is about social participation and economic certainty. All society benefits from homosexual marriage like all society benefited from universal suffrage.

  10. mondo rock, it didn’t require genetic engineering to enable interracial couples to conceive offspring. There is a human right to procreate with the person of our mutual choice regardless of their genes and race, but there are supportable basis to prohibit certain specific relationships, such as siblings and same-sex, because procreation is unethical. It requires genetically-modified lab-created gametes. It’s also not a right.

    narcoticmusing: Prohibiting same-sex couples from conceiving offspring together is better pubic policy than leaving it legal because it won’t cost anything to prohibit it, but will drain billions of dollars if we leave it legal to make same-sex conception safe and affordable, and waste energy spewing greenhouse gases and using up fossil fuels to enable something that there just isn’t any need for or right to. It would divert medical personel away from working on actual medicine for sick people, and on and on

    And to be clear: my argument is only about the actual fertilization, I’m not saying children need to be raised by a mother and father, or that same-sex couples should not be allowed to parent children they become parents of by other means. Same-sex couples could have federally recognized Civil Unions defined as “marriage minus conception rights” so they gave all the rights and protections of marriage except didn’t protect the right to conceive offspring together. Those could be adopted in most states almost immediately, and would protect and benefit same-sex couples much much more than the right to create genetic offspring together, which can’t even be done and might never be possible, even if we waste tons of money and energy on research.

  11. narcoticmusing

    siblings breeding is unethical due to the risk of genetically recessive genes being expressed in the phenotype – not because it is unethical.

    Same-sex couples have no such limitation or comparison. A far more accurate comparison is to infertile couples – by your summation they should not be able to marry as there is, at great expense, manipulation of gametes and/or donation from a third party.

    It costs a great deal to maintain the prohibition of same-sex marriage due to the profound benefits of marriage on both the couple and the community. Marriages are more likely to last and produce certainty and promote economic and community participation, which in turn provides both economic and social benefits. This creates two questions: 1. Why would you want to deny the individual benefits of marriage from same-sex couples? 2. Why would you want to deny the wider community the benefit of economic participation and certainty?

    You are still yet to provide an argument against this other than your own personal preference and stuff you made up (eg. your billions of dollars claim). The same sort of BS was sprouted to stop inter-racial marriage, to prevent inter-religious marriage; to remove the ownership aspect of a woman by the man in marriage; to give women the vote.

    The fundamental arguments against equality for women in the day were: women are too soft; women would take men’s jobs; it suits men to have women as slaves. And yet, we have not seen these billions of dollars of cost eventuate, rather, we see the productivity commission applauding these developments and trying to encourage more women to work.

    Thus far, your ‘fertilization’ argument means that anyone who is infertile by means of genetics; bad luck (eg accident, radiation exposure; shorts too tight for too long); old age; choice; genetic phenotype (eg intersex); or because their partner happens to have the same gender – ALL of those groups should be excluded and should have only access to civil unions because marriage is about ability to fertilize conceive.

    This is despite that marriage is acknowledged in childless couples; elderly couples; infertile couples; couples that adopt children; couples that require IVF; and so on. I take it you will be lobbying to have all of those marriages annulled?

  12. narcoticmusing

    On the cost – which really bugged me that you would just make that up in the absence of any other argument – I’d argue that if you consider the cost of domestic violence on our hospitals/emergency departments AND that fertility treatment does not divert resources from ‘treating the sick’, even your guestimates are foolish at best.

  13. mondo rock, it didn’t require genetic engineering to enable interracial couples to conceive offspring.

    So couples who require IVF to conceive should be forbidden from marrying?

    My wife and I have no children, and may not have any children, and yet our marriage is a real marriage. If the arguments of “John Howard” had any merit, and marriage between gay and lesbian couples must be discriminated against by the law because marriage is somehow tied to procreating, then they would basically be asserting that our marriage was pointless. That marriage without children isn’t marriage.

    And yet… I feel pretty confident in saying, and I suspect the world’s many childless married couples would agree with me, that there’s still a point to our marriages. That making an oath to commit your life to your partner, to be there with them “for better for worse, in sickness and in health”, to comfort and protect them and be comforted and protected in return, to build our lives together – that is meaningful and important to both the couples themselves AND the broader society. THAT is what a marriage is.

    And those are all things that have nothing to do with gender, and that of course can apply to gay and lesbian couples.

    I defy “John Howard” or any of the other “procreation is what marriage is all about” types to tell me to my face that there’s no point to my marriage unless there’s the “possibility” of kids.

  14. With genetic engineering and labs and donor conception and surrogates and artificial wombs, there is ALWAYS a possibility of kids. But the only ethical way to conceive children is through natural sexual intercourse of a man and a woman, preferably in marriage, certainly at least eligible to marry. Marriage should always express legal approval and allow the couple to have sex and procreate offspring together with their own genes. Same sex couples should be prohibited from attempting to conceive offspring together, they should go to jail for a long time along with all the scientists who attempted to facilitate it.

  15. IVF is not ethical, but at least it joins a man and a woman’s unmodified gametes and is not genetic engineering. Joining two women or two men’s genes requires significant intervention by scientists to correct the genomic imprinting.

  16. But the only ethical way to conceive children is through natural sexual intercourse of a man and a woman

    Why is that the only “ethical” way?

    Marriage should always express legal approval and allow the couple to have sex and procreate offspring together with their own genes.

    Why?

    Same sex couples should be prohibited from attempting to conceive offspring together, they should go to jail for a long time along with all the scientists who attempted to facilitate it.

    Why?

    Feel free to present some kind of evidence for your assertion that same sex parenting is somehow bad for children.

    I like how “John Howard” completely ignored the points in my last comment, too. Of course he did – he has no response. As dishonest a debater as the real John Howard.

  17. zaratoothbrush

    Johnny, sweetie, do us all a favour, will you, and admit that they made you hate “poofs” in school, and you’ve never come up with the balls to disobey them since then. OK?

  18. narcoticmusing

    Agreed Jeremy. JH gives lots of assertions of wrongs and rights but no evidence, nor even an argument, for why that is or even should be the case.

    JH – are you arguing that any parents that have adopted a child should have that child removed because it wasn’t natural?

    JH – are you arguing that if a couple have sex and the woman becomes pregnant, because there is no intention for them to be married, she should abort? Because you realise that is how a lesbian can quite legally and happily get pregnant right? Without any IVF or other ‘unnatural’ intervention.

    JH- do you even know what IVF and fertility treatment is? It is NOT genetic manipulation and even the IV part of IVF is still natural, it is merely increasing the odds.

    JH- do you realise that genetic manipulation is not required for same-sex fertilization?

    JH – do you comprehend that children are not a prerequisite for marriage in the CURRENT definition that you use to your advantage when making up stuff about your preferences?

    My father died. My mother re-married when she was just shy of 60. According to your definition, my mother who was treated very poorly by my father and finally found happiness – albeit happiness when she could no longer procreate – has a completely invalid and meaningless marriage. That pretty much makes you a monster imo.

  19. IVF is not ethical, but at least it joins a man and a woman’s unmodified gametes and is not genetic engineering. Joining two women or two men’s genes requires significant intervention by scientists to correct the genomic imprinting.

    And the next thing you know, they’ll be wanting to combine their genes with the genes of animals, or even polygamous genes…

  20. Why is that the only “ethical” way?Well, I should have said “married sexual intercourse,” because obviously rape and adultery are not ethical ways of conceiving a child even though they are natural sexual intercourse. And I’m not trying to ban IVF, I’m just saying it is unethical. I am trying to ban genetic engineering and attempting to create people by any means other than joining a man and a woman’s natural gametes. Intentionally creating a baby makes babies into material possessions. Married sexual intercourse is not just about trying to make a baby, it is about two people uniting together and being open and welcoming to possible children together, it is the way all people have been created throughout history until recently, it is free, it doesn’t use any energy. Plus marital sexual intercourse is a basic human right, and rights are ethical by definition, they are “right,” and creating a human being any other way is not a right and so is not ethical by definition.

    Why?Well, married couples should always have a right to conceive offspring together, they should never be prohibited from sex or having babies or forced to use better genes. That is just awful government intrusion and eugenics and would lead to loss of liberty and equality.

    Why? Attempting to make an embryo from two men or two women would expose the baby to unknown genetic defects and waste too much money and resources on something entirely unnecessary. There is simply no good reason to try it, when there are so many existing kids that need good homes.

    Feel free to present some kind of evidence for your assertion that same sex parenting is somehow bad for children. When you say “parenting” I assume you understand I am talking about reproducing together, not “raising” children, changing diapers, etc. Parenting is not a right of marriage, conceiving offspring is a right of marriage. As to evidence it’s bad to conceive with someone of the same sex, the mouse Kaguya was the only one to survive to adulthood out of 450 embryos created, 370 implanted, and ten live births. So far, that is the only “successful” experiment in same-sex conception. Even that animal experiment is cruel and wasteful and unethical, but human experiments would be millions of times worse.

    I don’t mean to ignore any of your points. Now that you understand that I’m talking about creating genetic offspring for same-sex couples, feel free to ask me again.

  21. JH – are you arguing that any parents that have adopted a child should have that child removed because it wasn’t natural?

    Of course not! Google the Egg and Sperm Civil Union Compromise to read the proposal.

    JH – are you arguing that if a couple have sex and the woman becomes pregnant, because there is no intention for them to be married, she should abort?

    No, I wouldn’t say that.

    Because you realise that is how a lesbian can quite legally and happily get pregnant right? Without any IVF or other ‘unnatural’ intervention.

    My proposal wouldn’t change that fact.

    JH- do you even know what IVF and fertility treatment is? It is NOT genetic manipulation and even the IV part of IVF is still natural, it is merely increasing the odds.My proposal would not ban IVF or gamete donation. It would prohibit creating offspring by any means other than joining a sperm of a man and an egg of a woman, preserve the conception rights of marriage, and federally recognize Civil Unions defined as “marriage minus conception rights.”

    JH- do you realise that genetic manipulation is not required for same-sex fertilization?

    Wrong, it is! Eggs and sperm have complementary genomic imprinting. Both are required to make a viable embryo.

    JH – do you comprehend that children are not a prerequisite for marriage in the CURRENT definition that you use to your advantage when making up stuff about your preferences?

    But being ALLOWED to have children is a prerequisite. That’s why we don’t let siblings marry, etc.

  22. My father died. My mother re-married when she was just shy of 60. According to your definition, my mother who was treated very poorly by my father and finally found happiness – albeit happiness when she could no longer procreate – has a completely invalid and meaningless marriage. That pretty much makes you a monster imo.

    There is no age limit to being allowed to marry and attempt to procreate. All adults can marry until they die, if they are not siblings, etc. They probably won’t succeed, and certainly don’t need to even try or want to, but society can still approve and allow them to conceive offspring together.

    You seem to be disrespecting the marriages of couples that might have children together. I certainly want my marriage to be approved and allowed to conceive offspring of my own, with my wife, I don’t want to be told we have the same right to have children that siblings or same-sex couples do.

  23. FYI, OpineEditorials, like NOMblog, Ruth Institute, FamilyScholars, and some other sites, is a libertarian Transhumanist site making lame arguments to try to separate marriage and procreation rights. You’re arguments certainly work over there, but they don’t work against my point. They don’t let me post there to point out that marriage should always allow the couple to conceive offspring, and that same-sex procreation should be banned. They want genetic engineering to be legal and don’t think all marriages should be allowed to have children if their genes are unfit. That’s why I’m posting this here.

  24. narcoticmusing

    Wrong, it is! Eggs and sperm have complementary genomic imprinting. Both are required to make a viable embryo.

    Nope. The egg itself is required as it has the necessary environment (which also requires several eggs). The chromosome pairs can be contributed by two eggs or two sperm without genetic manipulation.

    But even if we put aside the genetic argument, you realise that a lesbian couple can be fertilised by a male friend or a male couple could have a female assist/carry a child.

    I suppose my point here is, what does ANY of your arguments have to do with same-sex marriage? If marriage is about conception then anyone who cannot conceive naturally should not be able to marriage, including my mother, including someone with cystic fibrosis, including anyone who would require unnatural intervention or someone else to provide them a child. There is no reason why same-sex conception is a requirement of marriage anymore than conception itself is a requirement of marriage.

    Furthermore, your argument about a ‘right’ to conceive ignores all of my points about the significant flaws in heterosexual couples, such as the significant physical strength difference that has led to domestic violence being the number one preventable cause of death and injury for women, right now, in Australia. As a happily married, heterosexual, with no children (nor intent to have children), you need to justify WHY i should have a right to conceive that my neighbour does not simply because he is gay. Why should my father, who was abusive, have had such a right, but my gentle natured, loving neighbour should not.

    The same-sex genetic combinatorics you speak of is a completely separate and different argument to what is being sought.

  25. narcoticmusing

    I don’t want to be told we have the same right to have children that siblings or same-sex couples do

    A) siblings having children is not simply a preference – it is about expression of recessive genes and the liklihood of that increasing dramatically. Thus laws relating to incest are purely a protection against genetic disease (and abuse of a position of trust).
    B) There is NO comparison between siblings mating and same sex couples getting married and/or having children through whatever means is currently available (and same-sex fertilisation is not).

    You reveal yourself in this statement. It simply suits you to have these rights denied homosexuals. Just like it suited men for eons (and some men still) to subordinate women for no other reason than they can and it suits them to have a slave.

  26. Google genomic imprinting. Combining chromosomes from two eggs or two sperm doesn’t work. The idea is to use a person’s stem cells to create haploid primordial germ cells and then “coax” them somehow to develop into the opposite sex gametes so the person can reproduce with someone of the same sex. I think that should be prohibited, along with all other methods at creating a person that are not the way everyone has always been created, as the genetic offspring of a man and woman.

    I’m not talking about a woman using donor sperm or having a one-night-stand, that is a separate issue and is not a right of marriage.

    You won’t “put aside the genetic argument” until you stop insisting that same-sex procreation must be legal, and that a same-sex couple has the same right to procreate genetic offspring as a married man and woman. If you did that, if you accepted that only a man and a woman should have conception rights, then we could make progress getting federal recognition and protections in most states in the form of Civil Unions defined as “marriage minus conception rights.”

    Married couples should always feel the right to have children together using their own genes. Same-sex couples shouldn’t have that right. Why is it so important to insist on that right when it can’t even be done and might never be possible, will surely be super expensive and risky, is not necessary, and when agreeing to prohibit it would enable more states to pass CU’s and more couples to have security for their family? They don’t need a right to make genetic offspring together, they need security and benefits of state and federal recognition, all the OTHER rights of marriage.

  27. JH, you are still yet to justify why marriage must involve conception/children at all. I agree that children can be a product of marriage, but they also occur without marriage and marriages occur just as validly without children.

    You say there is no age barrier to marriage in one breath and then in the next say that procreation is a required right of marriage. My mother’s marriage is as infertile as a homosexual marriage. There is no potential for children. The level of manipulation required for her eggs to be ‘coaxed’ into thinking they are viable and her uterus into thinking it can carry a child would be astronomical, expensive and likely fail. Read up on what happens to eggs after women pass menopause, consider what occurs to the telomeres of the chromosomes. I put it to you that the level of manipulation to make her fertile would be as much or more than same sex.

    That being said, the same sex-advocates are not asking for same-sex gamete manipulation/fertilisation “rights” – they are simply asking for marriage.

    You have not once justified why marriage MUST involve procreation beyond it being your personal preference and other circular arguments like it must involve a man and a woman because it must involve a man and a woman. Jeremy and I have repeatedly asked why and not once have you justified why. Using the word unethical to describe something doesn’t make it so. Saying it is bad policy doesn’t make it so. No wonder the other sites don’t let you post when you simply say things over and over without ever justifying it.

    They only argument you justify is about same-sex fertilisation – that is a completely separate argument to marriage that you have not justified the connection beyond personal preference. That you personally want to feel special in your ‘right’ to conceive versus other relationships you find icky (revealed by your constant comparison of same sex with incest).

  28. Marriage must allow the couple to have sex and conceive offspring together, because it’s a human right and it would be terrible to prohibit any married couple from having sex or conceiving children from their own genes.

    People should not be allowed to attempt to conceive with someone of the same sex, because it would require genetic engineering and that would be too risky and cost too much money and waste too much energy and harm the basis of equality and human rights.

    You have yet to explain why it is necessary that same-sex couples be allowed to attempt to procreate offspring. I’ve never heard any gay couples say it was so important, usually they say that being able to have children together is not necessary and their relationships are just as meaningful as couples that can have children together, they never mention a strong desire to have children together. But now apparently you are saying they were all lying, and the most important thing is that they have equal procreation rights. IT CAN’T EVEN BE DONE! It might never be possible! Why make it the most important essential demand??

    And after you answer “It isn’t important, we don’t demand procreation rights,” consider that I do demand procreation rights with my wife, with no age limits, using our own genes. So don’t say that we should have equal rights to a same-sex couple, or siblings, that is very offensive and disrespectful.

    Regarding menopause, it’s possible that marriage protects a right for women to use labs to restore their eggs to youthful health, but I would argue that marriage gives a more abstract approval and doesn’t mean a right to use labs to help achieve procreation. It just means society smiles on the concept of children together, whether they arrive or not. But same-sex couples shouldn’t even have that abstract right, society should not smile on the concept of children from two people of the same sex. People should be prohibited, publicly, at every age, from attempting to procreate with someone of the same sex. It is not a right and it would be bad public policy if we allowed it, and risky and unethical. Prohibiting it would be great public policy, it would heal the budget mess, restore dignity, get people working again, end the wars, stop terrorism, respect marriage, affirm equality, and help same-sex families, and prevent eugenics and the huge government regulation it would lead to.

  29. narcoticmusing

    I have not suggested same-sex couples should be able to create offspring from their own genes. I’ve repeatedly stated it is a completely separate debate to allowing same-sex marriage and that is because marriage is not dependent on conception capacity.

    You are obsessed with this same-sex fertilisation concept so read it in to everything you see. I have argued, repeatedly, that children and procreation for that matter, are not a prerequisite for marriage. Period. Any requirement of procreation on marriage should apply to all, not just people you dislike. Similarly, if procreation is not a requirement then what is the impediment to same-sex marriage?

    For example, conveniently saying ‘no age limits’ ignores the reality of age, At a certain age, people are infertile (women particularly so). If procreation is a ‘right’ of marriage then it should be denied old people and anyone who cannot naturally conceive (too bad for your wife if she’s infertile huh, I suppose you’ll dump her for that crime of infringing your conception ‘rights’).

  30. … just wondering if “The Playful Walrus” is permitted to join this conversation. Seems strange that he would write a separate post on his own blog rather than engage in the conversation here.

  31. Sure he is. But he apparently prefers to play in his own sandpit.

  32. Marriage always licenses and approves of babies together, from the couples own genes, as an abstract right. It’s what marriage means.

    Imagine if Loving v Virginia said that marriage and procreation were separate issues! No one even suggested it, it was so obvious they were talking about making “interracial” babies together. No one said, how about they can marry, but not have children, or can have children, but not marry? Well, actually, eugenicists have been saying it for about a hundred years, but they’re racists and don’t respect human dignity, equality and rights. They sterilized people and prohibited miscegenation.

    They are not separate issues, they’ve never been and should not be separated now. All couples that are allowed to procreate should be allowed to marry, all couples that are allowed to marry should be allowed to procreate with their own genes. All couples that are prohibited from procreating should be prohibited from marriage, all couples that are prohibited from marriage should be prohibited from procreating (though the penalties need not be the same for adultery, incest or attempting same-sex procreation). (And the prohibitions on marriage must apply to everyone equally; they have to be on the type of relationship, not the individuals, according to public facts, not private genes or personal fitness.)

    Marriage is not dependent on a capacity to reproduce, but on whether we approve and allow it. We should not allow anyone to procreate with a sibling, a parent or child, someone married to someone else, or someone of the same sex.

  33. Wisdom Like Silence

    lol

  34. I think the whole rambling line of “marriage is about procreation” logic is nothing more than rationalization of bigotry. Its obvious when you see the anti crowd straining to point out that the childlessness of opposite-sex couples is a disability, while the childlessness of same-sex couples is an inability. And based on this distinction without a difference, these anti-marriage folks then declare that childless same-sex couples are as different childless opposite-sex couples as an automobile is different from a park bench.

  35. Gay marriage will come as another step is made in rights for gays and lesbians:

    “GAY parents now have the same rights as heterosexual couples and will be fully eligible for paid parental leave when they have a baby”

    http://www.news.com.au/business/worklife/gay-dads-eligible-for-paid-parental-leave/story-e6frfm9r-1226485896216#ixzz281NkYrEM

  36. Ronson, they should have the same rights except one: the right to procreate genetic offspring with each other. It’s really obnoxious to say that a married man and a woman have the same right to have genetic offspring as a same-sex couple. And then to double down and make it the most important thing, when it can’t even be done, and it would be so easy to settle on Civil Unions defined as “marriage minus conception rights.”

  37. It seems The Walrus doesn’t care to discuss this in his sandpit, so I posted my two cents here:

    http://www.truthforamericans.org/2012/10/the-procreative-type-of-relationship/

  38. narcoticmusing

    It’s really obnoxious to say that a married man and a woman have the same right to have genetic offspring as a same-sex couple

    No, it is hypocritical to suggest that a man and a woman with no more potential to make genetic offspring as a same-sex couple should have more rights.

    I comprehend your argument around heterosexual couple capable or with a potential to concieve vis genetic offspring, but to suggest that an entirely infertile couple is the same as this is just an excuse to be bigotted against homosexual couples.

    Both an infertile couple and a homosexual couple have the same options/access to having children, including: not conceiving at all, adoption, external assistance (IVF/ surrogacy / sperm/egg donation/ etc). Both an infertile couple and a homosexual couple can have a meaningful marriage with any of the above (including NOT concieving).

    Marriage DOES NOT confer a right/duty to children any more than it confers access to procreate. A right is not a right if it is not enforceable. For example, if you posssed a right to concieve upon marriage, you should be able to enforce that right against your wife if she does not want to conceive. As you are not (I hope) suggesting this, then there is no right. Or if there is some other impediment to concieving (such as your work environment) you should be able to enforce that right against your employer. The list goes on – it is simply not the case.A right to procreate would generate an obligation on the other party to procreate.

    What you call a right is merely your personal preference or desire.

    If it were a right or duty attached to marriage we would also have to consider interventions such as: removing children from unmarried couples and/or enforce procreation; invalidate marriages that cannot procreate; make parenthood a mitigating factor in sentencing.

  39. Wisdom Like Silence

    Marriage only confers a right and duty to suffering through obnoxious jokes about how awful marriage is

  40. No, procreation being a right of marriage means that it can’t be prohibited and ought to be protected and respected. But it doesn’t mean it’s guaranteed or that the state has to assist or provide medical help. It just means that the state approves and allows the couple to do things that might result in a baby being born that is their genetic offspring. The state shouldn’t do that for same-sex couples, it should prohibit them doing things that might result in a baby being born that is their genetic offspring.

  41. Wisdom Like Silence

    Do you mean stopping people from having sperm/sperm or egg/egg babies?

  42. “it should prohibit them doing things that might result in a baby being born that is their genetic offspring…”

    yeah..and fluoridation is a plot to turn us all into reptilian monsters with really strong teeth…

    yawn

  43. Wisdom Like Silence

    I can no longer sit back and allow Homo infiltration, Homo indoctrination, Homo subversion and the international Homo conspiracy to sap and impurify all of our precious bodily fluids.

  44. narcoticmusing

    JH your constant tripping over your own logic exposes its flaws.

    procreation being a right of marriage means that it can’t be prohibited How does same-sex marriage impact on that?

    But it doesn’t mean it’s guaranteed or that the state has to assist or provide medical help
    Agreed. And by your own analysis, a same-sex couple would require substantial state intervention to ‘guarantee’ procreation; thus not prohibiting it is not the same as guaranteeing it and as such, there is no reason same-sex couples need be given such a guarantee that we wouldn’t give hetero couples. Furthermore, how is this situation any different for a same sex or infertile couple – neither are guaranteed procreation but both have meanignful marriages where procreation is not legally prohibited.

    Sure. So, given that a same-sex couple can’t procreate just doing the things theat they do, without the medical intervention above, and given there is no guarantee – how is this an issue?

    Your own statement that it is a right against prohibition and not a right that is an enforceable guarantee means it is not a REQUIREMENT FOR MARRIAGE. Ergo, it is not an impediment to same sex nor infertile couples.

  45. Wisdom Like Silence, yes, but the words “sperm” and “egg” can be technicalities these days. I mean, basically, stopping people from having male/male and female/female babies, or everything else that isn’t male/female sexual reproduction.

    Nice moniker, by the way. I think there are lots of people who see this issue is real, and agree with me about the law and the implications, and see that it is huge fucking deal. And they realize that if word got out and people realized that the issue of gay marriage had something to do with genetic engineering babies for gay couples, they’d put an end to it pronto, and so they go silent. Why aren’t there more lawyers opining on the right of same-sex couples to procreate offspring? A few commentators have broached the subject – Rauch, Culhane, Corvino all demand the right to have offspring with a partner of the same sex, and so does everyone here. But after six years of this, absolutely zero lawyers have said I’m wrong.

  46. JH: “procreation being a right of marriage means that it can’t be prohibited”
    NM: “How does same-sex marriage impact on that?”

    It either means that same-sex procreation can’t be prohibited, or it changes the rights of marriage.

  47. NM: “how is this situation any different for a same sex or infertile couple”

    Infertile couples are allowed and approved to conceive offspring together. Same-sex couples should be prohibited, it should be a crime to conceive offspring together. There is no right to, first of all, and it is unsafe, unnecessary, unwise, would cost billions of dollars…and ruling it out would be so good, it would lead to civil union protections for gay couples, resolve the marriage debate, end the division and distraction, get us focused on real problems…it would surely reduce terrorism…

    You guys could be heros, if you got the world to settle on the egg and sperm civil union compromise. Please don’t screw us all over, think about our scarce resources and all of the people who deserve to enjoy their human rights as much as anyone else. Don’t side with some anti-social sci-fi nerd that says it’s more important to become transhuman and explore the universe.

  48. Wisdom Like Silence

    But then we will all have sat through the last ten minutes of 2001 A Space Odyssey for nothing JH!

  49. zaratoothbrush

    Continuing the Kubrick theme:

    All work and no play makes Jack a dull, dull, dull, dull boy
    All work and no play makes Jack a dull, dull, dull, dull boy
    All work and no play makes Jack a dull, dull, dull, dull boy
    All work and no play makes Jack a dull, dull, dull, dull boy
    All work and no play makes Jack a dull, dull, dull, dull boy

  50. narcoticmusing

    Infertile couples are allowed and approved to conceive offspring together

    Approved by whom? You?

    They are still INCAPABLE. Just like a same-sex couple.

    Same-gender gamate combination is a COMPLETELY SEPARATE issue to same-sex marriage. Like all assisted reproductive technology use and stem cell / human genetic modification – this is subject to a completely different set of legislation, controls and ethics. It is not in any way related to marriage except in your own mind. JH it is your limited mind that can’t see past your own bullshit that is ‘screwing us all over’.

    Marriage is a social construct, not a genetic one. It does not require, nor should it, children. It does not require YOUR approval, nor should it. Marriage has never, nor should it require children nor a “right’ to conceive.

    You have not yet given a single response to any of my assertions beyond it being your preference and words like “x is good, y is bad”. why don’t you just end with ‘aww carn times ten’.

  51. Has “John Howard” given a single reason yet why gay people and lesbians must be prevented by the state from having children? Or why it’s such a risk that they must be prevented from marrying in case they do?

    Nope?

    Righto then.

  52. PS Or why he thinks marriage is government “approval” for having children, given the number of people who have children out of wedlock?

  53. Wisdom Like Silence

    I think he’s worried about impossible genetic experiments being covered in the PBS.

  54. “Infertile couples are allowed and approved to conceive offspring together”

    Approved by whom? You?
    By everyone, by marriage. It is what marriage does and should always do.

    They are still INCAPABLE. Just like a same-sex couple.
    Maybe they are infertile, maybe not, we don’t know or care because marriage does not require anyone to be capable of having children, only that they are not in a prohibited relationship. If not, then they are allowed to have children together, they are approved to have children of their own genes. That approval means something even if they are unable to or don’t want to. Same-sex couples would be publicly prohibited from having children and anyone who attempts to make offspring of a same-sex couple should go to jail. See the difference between infertile and same-sex couples? Basically, people have a right to procreate, but only with someone of the other sex.

    Treating same-sex procreation as a separate issue to decide later means changing marriage, stripping the approval and right to procreate offspring from marriage. If we have SSM but don’t allow same-sex procreation, it would be the first time in history that a married couple was not approved and allowed to procreate offspring together, and that would mean all married couples could be forced to use better genes or prohibited from having their own children. I guess that’s OK with you, but it is not with me, I don’t want my procreation rights declared equal to a same-sex couple’s. And you won’t accept same-sex procreation being banned anyhow.

    I’ve given lots of reasons to prohibit creating people by any means other than the union of a man’s sperm and a woman’s egg: cost, risk, etc. And I’ve explained how giving up the demand for procreation rights (which can’t be done and might never be possible let alone legal) can create a distinction between CU’s and marriage that would countries around the world to compromise on CU’s for same-sex couples defined as “marriage minus conception rights.”

  55. What “cost”? What “risks”? Has “John Howard” found any that apply to same sex couples that don’t apply to infertile heterosexual couples?

    Meanwhile, how is marriage government “approval” or “permission” for some “right” to have children, since so many married couples don’t have children and so many people having children aren’t married?

  56. Once upon a time in the USA, states could prohibit intimate relations between unmarried adults. Since sex was only legal between married people, only they had the “right” to have children. People who insist that marriage confers reproductive rights are stuck in 1971 and oblivious to the realities of the 21st century.

  57. Wisdom Like Silence

    Did he at some point suggest that de homo gays are not allowed to adopt or impregnate some third parties? Coz I ain’t reading through his posts.

  58. searchez, marriage still makes sex and procreation legal, even if people can have sex and procreate outside of mariage these days. It should still make sex and procreation legal, no marriage should ever be prohibited from conceiving a child with their own genes. Same-sex couples should be prohibited from conceiving a child with their own genes.

    The cost and risk ought to be obvious. You can’t just get a man’s stem cells to form into viable eggs with a magical incantation, it requires researchers and equipment and labs. And it requires testing, and even with animal testing, there would still be huge risk of genomic imprinting defects for any child born from artificial gametes. Yes, IVF has risks and costs too, and I think it should be banned too, someday. But even if we did, it wouldn’t effect the public approval and right of a man and woman to marry and procreate, banning IVF would only make it less likely they were able to. It would still be legal if they somehow conceived a child together, society would still approve of the concept of children, just not the use of IVF. Society should not approve of the concept of children from a same-sex couple, because it always requires unethical experiments and would be a bad public policy, and there is no right to do it. There is a right to procreate, but only with someone of the other sex.

  59. narcoticmusing

    that would mean all married couples could be forced to use better genes or prohibited from having their own children.

    No, it doesn’t. Why? Because as I already stated, all forms of assisted reproductive technology (and many other reproductive regulatory mechanisms eg surrogacy) are governed by completely separate laws. You know why? BECAUSE THEY ARE COMPLETELY SEPARATE ISSUES.

    That is why people can have children with or without marriage. Similarly, marriage occurs with or without children.

    I get your point JH – that you think marriage is about genetic mingling of genes and that this shouldn’t be allowed of same-sex gametes. I get it, I do. My point is that you are pretty much the only person in the world (well you and your little egg/sperm org) who agrees with this. The fact of the matter is that unless marriage requires children or the ability to procreate as a pre-condition, then the same-sex gamete issue is not relevant. As marriage does not require this, nor does it need to address the same-sex gamete issue.

    That issue is completely different and should be considered on its merits separately to SSM. It has a completely separate set of issues/costs associated with it that will need to be considered on their merits. SSM is a social construct and it is not up to you to declare who are approved for anything.

  60. narcoticmusing

    how is marriage government “approval” or “permission” for some “right” to have children, since so many married couples don’t have children and so many people having children aren’t married?

    EXACTLY. Summary of arguments here:

    JH twists and turns to try to justify his position but cannot – he simply answers with ‘cos it is bad mmk’. For example:

    JH asserts it (procreation) is a right that comes with marriage – false – it isn’t because it is not enforceable against any other party, including the State.

    JH says marriage creates procreation ‘permission’ – false – it isn’t because children are born out of wedlock all the time and have all the same rights/access to government/social/health/etc services as anyone else (ergo society and the law approve of these births).

    JH asserts that granting SSM will suddenly allow modification of gametes to enable same gender gamete fertilisation. False. a) marriage is a social construct not a genetic one. b) All assisted reproductive technologies are strictly regulated through separate legislative regimes. Indeed, these are regulated by States/territories (eg the ART Act in Vic) where marriage is regulated by the Feds – so they aren’t even the same jurisdiction. c) genetic manipulation is further restricted and regulated by separate legislation to ART.

    JH asserts that SSM is the same as incest. FALSE. Siblings are actually capable of procreation in the ‘natural’ way JH says is so important. They are barred from doing so due to the risk of a) duress/undue influence, b) the risk recessive genotypes expression in the phenotype (ie genetic disease). This risk does not occur from same-sex gametes. The issue with same-sex gametes relates to ribosomal rejection at the chromosome point, not with the possibility of deformed/diseased children.

    JH asserts that SSM shouldn’t be allowed because SS-couples cannot ‘naturally’ conceive. FALSE – infertile couples, including the elderly, are permitted to marry in JH’s own definition. They cannot conceive without outside assistance eg. ART; adoption; surrogacy.

    So, JH, other than just repeating that it is ‘bad’ if SSM happens and ‘good’ if only heteros can marry – do you actually have an ARGUMENT at all for why?

  61. narcoticmusing

    WLS – From what I understand, JH said it was fine for SS-couples to adopt or utilise 3rd parties for conception. His gripe is entirely about same-gender gametes which requires levels of reproductive technology that does not yet exist and is regulated by entirely different mechanisms/legislation than marriage.

  62. Also, it’s important that infertility is a private medical issue, and all people are presumed to be fertile and have a right to be fertile. But being the same sex is a public record, there is nothing private and medical about being the same sex.

  63. Wisdom Like Silence

    At the point where people in the waiting room figure out the parties both have boobs or dongs it makes that a bit of a moot point.

  64. ” But being the same sex is a public record, there is nothing private and medical about being the same sex.”

    One thing I could never stand was to see a filthy, dirty old drunkie, howling away at the filthy songs of his fathers……

  65. narcoticmusing

    JH, do you even know what a right is? Seriously.

    all people are presumed to be fertile

    No they are not. That is why we have fertility clinics, ART, adoption, sperm/egg donation, etc etc etc

    and have a right to be fertile
    No they don’t. It isn’t even a choice let alone a right.

    A right is enforceable. Please enlighten me as to whom you will enforce your right to fertility against today? Exactly what cause of action will you rely on when your ‘right’ is violated?

    Indeed, how is your “right” to procreate in any way infringed upon by SSM? Note that ‘feelings’ and ‘preferences’ have never been considered an infringement.

    there is nothing private and medical about being the same sex
    [sarcasm warning] Yeah, because there is nothing medical about having a penis or a vagina, sure. And it is completely your business if my partner has one, the other or both. [end sarcasm] Sexuality has nothing to do with you or the State. It is not for you or the State to say what two consenting adults can and can’t do. I agree that there are issues regarding same-gender gametes but that IS NOT relevant to SSM.

  66. [prohibiting SSP while allowing SSM] would mean all married couples could be forced to use better genes or prohibited from having their own children.

    No, it doesn’t. Why?

    Well, if a married same-sex couple can be prohibited from using their own genes to conceive children, and they have equal marriages and equal rights, then a married both-sex sex couple can be prohibited also, right? All marriages have always been approved and allowed to use their own genes to conceive offspring, but that would change if we prohibit same-sex procreation while also having same-sex marriage. Even if we let same-sex couples use their own genes to conceive offspring, it still would denigrate natural conception rights to declare them having equal rights, because the same-sex couple is forced to use lab-created gametes, so people would say conception rights can be fulfilled by lab-created gametes. The only way to protect everyone’s natural conception rights with their spouse is to prohibit same-sex procreation and same-sex marriage.

    And there are people who do want to force or pressure people into using better genes and prohibit them from using their own genes. It is worth protecting the right of all marriages to use their own genes to conceive offspring together, to stop people from feeling they don’t have a right to use their own genes.

    I know there need to be separate laws stopping genetic engineering and surrogacy, sperm donation, etc. Merely banning same-sex marriage is not going to stop labs from attempting same-sex procreation and other forms of genetic engineering, that’s why I am advocating for a federal Egg and Sperm law. I advocating for that law to stop manufactured designer babies, not to stop gay marriage, but it is incompatible with same-sex marriage. But it actually makes CU’s constitutional and would help gay people much more than the right to make genetic offspring does.

  67. Wisdom Like Silence

    What would be the issue if it was ever possible to have sperm/sperm or egg/gg children?

  68. “JH, do you even know what a right is? Seriously.”

    Rights are things that we should be allowed to do, basically, without guilt, things that government should not prohibit us from doing. And they have to be based on human history and human nature, not just on how cool it would be or how much we want to be able to do it. You can argue that we should be allowed to make human clones or genetically engineer our children or conceive offspring with someone of the same sex, but there is no right to do that, because it is not found in history or nature. There is, however, a right to marry and have sex and procreate offspring with our spouse. There is no right to adultery or hiring a surrogate or sperm donor. There is a right to medical privacy which sometimes means a right to do things like end a pregnancy or seek fertility treatment, but that’s controversial, and doesn’t cover cloning or genetically engineering people and certainly not conceiving offspring with the same sex, or changing sex and becoming the other sex, reproducing as the other sex, etc.

    I agree that there are issues regarding same-gender gametes but that IS NOT relevant to SSM.

    So, you accept that same-sex couples do not have a right to try to make genetic offspring together?

  69. Wisdom Like Science, it would lead to more genetic engineering of designer children and be really expensive, requiring government regulation of reproduction, and lead to the loss of natural reproduction rights and the basis of human equality. It should be thought about very carefully, and we shouldn’t declare it a right before considering the ramifications down the road. Preserving natural conception has many immediate advantages over barrelling along to a brave new postgendered world.

    Why do you think same-sex procreation is necessary or needed? Have you heard any gays claiming that not being able to procreate together was bothering them? Seems pretty heteronormative and patronizing to think they need to be able to procreate offspring together. Why not ban them and realize the benefits of resolving the marriage debate to benefit same-sex couples with CU’s? CU’s could be enacted easily if they were not “marriage in all but name” and these would be, they’d be constitutional because they wouldn’t have the same rights with a different name, they’d have different rights with a different name.

  70. narcoticmusing

    Omg, JH I just don’t know where to start.

    First, you keep implying I’m arguing for genetic manipulation in vivo. I am not. Indeed, not even same-sex gamete combinatorics requires genetic manipulation (it requires suppression of certain lock-key type receptors, but not modification of the genes themselves that combine to generate the final set of DNA pairs). Many forms of infertility would require FAR more intervention than this in order to enable conception (consider, for example, the infertility induced by cystic fibrosis).

    Rights are things that we should be allowed to do, basically, without guilt, things that government should not prohibit us from doing
    Wrong. Rights are enforceable by law against either another person/body in certain situations (eg contract rights) or against the world (eg property rights). Rights can also be waived or diminished if required to be balanced against other rights (eg defamation vs freedom of speech).

    There is, however, a right to marry and have sex and procreate offspring with our spouse. Even if these were rights, there is no reason the three need to be contemporaneous. I can have sex and procreate with or without marriage. I can also marry without procreation. Even sex, which in some jurisdictions has been held to be a requirement of marriage, does not give a right to sex. Rather, it gives a right to the deprived party to end the marriage. Seeing we have no fault divorce in Australia, you can also end the marriage over a tic tac dispute or just because you felt like it.

    There is no right to adultery or hiring a surrogate or sperm donor. We have no fault divorce. Adultery is completely legal with or without consent of the other party. Sure it is grounds for divorce but you don’t need grounds for divorce – it can simply be because you don’t feel like being married anymore.

    You still have not answered any of the how/why questions as to how/why same-sex marriage (or fertilisation for that matter) would erode or diminish your marriage/conception. How does it impact you if I marry someone? Surely, if SSM can impact your marriage than all marriages impact yours. Is not the divorce rate of heterosexuals far more eroding to your marriage than SSM? Is not the child abuse rates of heterosexual families far more corrosive to marriage/children than SSM?

    Nevertheless, I’m not arguing for or against same-gender gametes because it is NOT relevant to same sex marriage. There is no slippery slope here. It is an entirely different set of issues and if you want to debate that get your own blog. The issue on this blog is SSM, not your pet soap box issue.

  71. Wisdom Like Silence

    meh this is sort of a non-issue and probably one of the greatest trolling’s I’ve ever seen

  72. The fact of the matter is that unless marriage requires children or the ability to procreate as a pre-condition, then the same-sex gamete issue is not relevant.

    QED Narc.

    JH has studiously avoided the question of why the ability to procreate with each other should be a precondition to marriage. Unless and until he can establish why he thinks this should be so then his argument is a gigantic red herring.

    Nobody here is proposing that the government be forced to provide same-sex reproduction rights so I can’t fathom how this line of enquiry is at all relevant to the gay marriage debate.

  73. mondo, ability is irrelevant, what matters is that marriages be approved and allowed to try to conceive offspring together, with their own genes.

    If we allow people to conceive with someone of the same sex, which we currently do in the US (not sure about Australia’s laws) then we should also allow same-sex marriage. If we prohibit it, then we should not allow same-sex marriage. There is no reason to allow one but not the other, it would change marriage for everyone and take away the right to conceive offspring from everyone, which is only officially and traditionally found in marriage and no where else.

    Even if we said that there is a right to unmarried conception (as opposed to just tacitly allowing it like we do now), we still should not change marriage by allowing people to marry who are prohibited publicly from procreating offspring.

    Also, if we allow same-sex conception (and any genetic engineering) then it will soon be demanded that we provide it for everyone, regardless of their personal ability to pay for it. If we say it is a right, then it becomes an obligation for society to make it safe and affordable. Sure, for the first 10 years it might be something only a few rich couples are able to pay for, but the idea is for all gay and transgender kids to have it provided for them. And if rich people are allowed to do genetic engineering to improve their babies and eliminate disease, and it is shown to be beneficial 20 years from now, then it will be a duty to not let any babies be born to poor people without the benefits of genetic engineering, we will be obligated to pay for it for everyone. Super expensive and impractical.

  74. narc: ” Indeed, not even same-sex gamete combinatorics requires genetic manipulation”

    It requires changing the genomic imprinting. There is no way to do it without genetic engineering, changing the genes in a lab somehow. Infertility is not the same as being the same sex as someone else. Curing infertility requires curing the infertility and restoring health, and there is a right to do that. Same-sex conception requires making artificial gametes in a lab and is not a matter of health, healthy people cannot accomplish same-sex conception.

  75. WLS – I’m hoping to find someone who realizes that insisting on conception rights, which cannot even be done and might never be possible, is harming thousands of same-sex couples who need security and protections for all the other aspects of marriage and don’t need conception rights.

    You could resolve the marriage debate and help thousands of families by giving up the demand for equal conception rights.

  76. Wisdom Like Silence

    Done. Pleasure doing business with you, when can we go book out the local botannical gardens?

  77. Cool! Help spread the word among Australian LGBT blogs, this could really be big around the world, helping millions of couples and their families real soon.

    You have a great opportunity. Now that gay marriage has lost in the Australian and New Zealand legislatures, go right back again with my proposal: Ask for Civil Unions that give all the rights and benefits except making offspring together, in exchange for accepting that only a man and a woman should be allowed to procreate offspring and procreating offspring is a right of marriage.

    Just leave conception rights aside for now. That solution could spread around the world, while we have a big international debate about genetic engineering of human beings and same-sex conception and individual reproduction rights. If we decide to allow using stem cells for same-sex couples to reproduce offspring, then countries would change the CU’s automatically to marriages. But meanwhile you’d have everything else, you could even call them marriages colloquially. (and yes, I would advocate that continuing the ban forever is better than keeping the option open, but the fact is the option to legalize it in the future always would be open even if we say it’s banned forever, because it is only a law and laws can be changed)

  78. narcoticmusing

    Just leave conception rights aside for now.
    Hate to be the one to tell you this (again) JH, but NO ONE is seeking this. Only YOU are bringing it up. No one else is. Why? BECAUSE IT IS NOT RELEVANT.

    SSM nor hetero-marriage require “conception rights”. Conception is not “approved” by the state via marriage, it is not approved or prohibited period.

    The US has a bill of rights, Australia does not. No where do we have any promise, approval or non-prohibition that would indicate a right to conception with marriage. As I said earlier, not even sex is a right in marriage so how can conception be a right?

    That being said, there is no where in the US Bill of rights that guarantees / approves or enshrines some ‘right’ to conception with marriage. Hence people are free to conceive with or without marriage and are free to marry with or without conception.

    It requires changing the genomic imprinting
    Way to weasel out of conceding the point. You may want to talk to an actual embryologist, geneticist or biochemist before making assertions like that. None of the genetic material that encodes the new human being requires modification – again it is only suppression of mechanisms in the egg itself that essentially work in a similar way to organ rejection. There are tags that say “i was from a sperm’ and tags that say “i’m from an egg’ just like an organ has tags that say “i was from john’ and the immune system says “i’m not john so you are foreign’. (Yes I’m dumbing it down for the benefit of the readers but also for your benefit as you seriously don’t seem to get it. As I am qualified to comment on it I figured it would be helpful).

    Your fears and comparisons with designer babies gattaca style are completely wrong (as wrong as your comparisons with incest). Modification of the genes that encode the potential child – which is your apparent fear in relation to genetic modification zygote to reduce disease or improve certain traits – does NOT occur at all in even the most remote sense. Any claim this occurs is either ignorant or dishonest. Your comparisons to designer babies is either ignorant or dishonest.

    I do not have a position on same-sex gamete combination because there is no need to – it is not an issue and not related to this. But I don’t appreciate crack pots associating a social issue with a genetic one, particularly when their knowledge of the genetics involved is wrong.

  79. If we allow people to conceive with someone of the same sex, which we currently do in the US (not sure about Australia’s laws) then we should also allow same-sex marriage. If we prohibit it, then we should not allow same-sex marriage.

    I completely reject this assertion.

    The existence (or otherwise) of an enforceable ‘right’ to procreate with your partner is not (and should not be) a precondition to marriage. Similarly, whether or not we as a society decide to condone or condemn same-sex reproduction is irrelevant to the question of whether gay marriage should be allowed.

    Genetic reproduction is not the marriage ‘trump card’ you seem to think it is JH. Marriage can be about an adopted family, a mixed family, a family conceived through a sperm donor or surrogate mother – or even just a family of two as it is for many who are childless by choice or necessity.

    Families are a good thing JH. We gay marriage advocates want to see more of them, not less, and your argument that they should somehow be limited by the desire of the participants to naturally conceive is, to be frank, utterly ridiculous.

  80. Wisdom Like Silence

    Everyone relax, we just sorted out the entire gay marriage issue in this thread, which as some of you may recall WAS THE TOPIC OF THE POST.
    Now which homo do I get my medal from for championing their cause? Is it Vin Diesel?

  81. narc, if you seek equal rights, you seek conception rights. I demand conception rights with my spouse, I refuse to be equated to siblings or same-sex couples. That’s utterly offensive. I want the right to live and love who I want to, but I don’t expect equal conception rights with a man as with a woman. Just admit that, and you could help millions of people.

    To address some of your misdirections, marriage is supposed to mean consent to have children together, and a refusal to have sex or children together is grounds for divorce. But that doesn’t mean a spouse can’t say no when they want to. I’m not saying marital rape should be allowed again, just that marriages should never be prohibited if they mutually want to have sex and procreate offspring together. Same-sex couples should be. That’s the difference that needs to be accepted.

  82. narcoticmusing

    Ugh… you are still speaking JH as if there are conception rights already in existence that a SS-couple would need to seek for equality. There is not. There is no such thing as a ‘conception right’. It is your own made up BS. You like to think that marriage confers such a thing, but it doesn’t. You’d like marriage to confer such a thing, but it doesn’t. That you really really want it to, doesn’t make it so.

    For the last time, THERE IS NO SUCH THING AS A RIGHT TO CONCEPTION. Marriage or no marriage.

    Just like there is no right to not be offended. So just because you find it offensive doesn’t make it prohibited. It just makes you offended. End of story.

    marriage is supposed to mean consent to have children together,
    Says who? You? My marriage was consent to live my life with my partner to the exclusion of all others. We made many promises that day and consented to many things – NOT ONCE was sex, conception or children mentioned. Consent needs to be explicit, not merely implied. You can’t just foist children on me because I got married.

    There was no consent to children. Indeed, the marriage contract does not specify sex, conception, copulation, children, or anything like that. No where on my marriage certificate does it seek my consent for children. No where on the marriage vows was my consent sought for children. NO. This is your own made up fantasy world BS.

    Just because YOUR marriage might make that a condition, does not mean it applies to ALL marriages. And what if your wife doesn’t want kids yet? Are you going to tamper with her contraception and trick her into it? Foist children upon her because you believe it is your right?

    A refusal to have sex or children is grounds for divorce, but so is wanting a snikers bar – why? Australia does not have fault based divorce (I’m not sure what the US has, but it isn’t relevant to the debate about SSM in Australia).

    If sex or having children were a right, you would be able to go to court and demand specific performance of that right. It if were a right, then marital rape would be a means of ‘self help’ for enforcing your right, just like you can resort to violence as ‘self help’ to defend yourself or property. Instead, you can only get a divorce but you know, you can get a divorce just because you feel like divorcing too. There are no limitations to fault-less divorce.

    ERGO no right in sex, no right to conception.

  83. Does JH think he has the right to force his wife to have kids? Is that something she agreed to when they married he should now be able to enforce on her if she changed her mind?

  84. narcoticmusing

    I demand conception rights with my spouse

    Yup, that is what JH thinks Jeremy. And it is one of the most repugnant, backwards, anti-women statements I have ever heard.

  85. “Same-sex couples should be. That’s the difference that needs to be accepted.”

    I bet you’re the kind of guy that would fuck a person in the ass and not even have the goddamn common courtesy to give him a reach-around. I’ll be watching you.

  86. No, my demand is that the state allow and approve of us having kids together and not say we have the same rights as a same-sex couple or siblings to have kids. Same-sex couples should be prohibited from having kids, and do not have a right to have kids. Marriages should never be prohibited from having kids, and should always have a right to have kids.

    Obviously I don’t think anyone can force their spouse to have kids, but I do think it used to be grounds for divorce if a spouse continually refuses sex and children.

  87. “genomic imprinting … a specific set of genes are provided by the mother, and a second set from the father,” Booth said. “These genes of different parental origin must interact in a process called genomic imprinting in order for the development of an embryo. This, as far as we are aware, occurs in all mammals with the exception of the monotremes — platypus and echidnas — and therefore explains why we cannot have facultative parthenogenesis in mammalian species without significant intervention by scientists.”

    Read more: http://www.foxnews.com/science/2012/09/15/virgin-births-may-be-common-in-wild/#ixzz28QswZYlJ

    That significant intervention by scientists is required for all same-sex couples to create an embryo. I know it doesn’t change the genetic sequence, only the methylation, the genomic imprinting, is different depending on if the genes are coming from a man or woman. But it is still risky and unethical and unnecessary and should be prohibited before kids think it might be possible some day.

  88. narcoticmusing

    Exacttl JH – significant intervention from scientists IS NOT genetic manipulation equivalent to designer babies.

    Your own reference (despite its dubious credibility being foxnews) confirms what I’ve said about this repeatedly. You are either lying when you say it is genetic engineering or really are very, very ignorant.

    Considering your scientific reference is foxnews, I’m going to say a combination – you are engaging in willing blindness in order to have anything confirm what you want to believe.

    No, my demand is that the state allow and approve of us having kids together
    The State has no say in this regardless, unless you require ART in which there is a separate regulatory regime. This is not relevant to marriage as the state attributes equal ‘approval’ for children with or without marriage;
    Similarly, the state does not require or associate children in any legislative structure (including custody rights) with marriage. Ergo, the State sees children as a separate issue from marriage. The state sees ART as a separate issue from both marriage and having children generally. The state sees genetic manipulation as separate to ART, children and marriage.

    Only you wish to link them and you are yet to provide a reason other than you think it should be so because you’d like it to be so. That is not a justification as to why, it is simply your preference. Even then, you cannot justify why it is your preference that marriage be tied with conception other than again, ‘cos it is good’.

    Finally – you keep ignoring this but Australia has fault-free divorce. So I can divorce my partner for ANY reason – including too much sex, not enough sex, or just I like blue candy today (ie at a whim). If sex/conception were a right or requirement, you could obtain a court order to enforce the specific performance of that right. In Australia, we’d call that state sanctioned rape. In your world you call it the beautiful gift of matrimony.

  89. Whether we call it genetic engineering or say that it isn’t genetic engineering to reverse the methylation pattern and create gametes of the other sex doesn’t matter. I think that since it changes the genetic information from what it is in nature, it is genetic engineering. But if you want to call it something else, feel free. It sure isn’t natural reproduction if it “requires significant intervention by scientists” to make it possible to breed with someone of the same sex. It would create a person with a genome that could not exist through natural procreation by existing people, just like other kinds of genetic engineering would. That’s the key distinguishing feature of genetic engineering. If it creates a person that could exist through natural sex by existing people then it is not genetic engineering, so IVF, even PGD, are not genetic engineering. But whatever, it is not a right, and is not ethical to attempt, would be bad public policy and should be banned. It is freakin ridiculous that you guys insist on it being legal and say it’s a higher priority for gays to have conception rights than to have legal protections and recognition that would instantly benefit millions of same-sex couples around the world. All that stuff about the 1001 benefits, I guess that was a lie, you only care about being allowed to make offspring together.

    And you not only demand to be allowed to do something unethical, expensive, unnecessary, and currently impossible, you also want to deny me and my wife the feeling of social approval to have sex and children that every marriage throughout history has felt. That social approval something we’d value and have a right to, but you say no. You gleefully strip the protection of conception rights from marriage, so that the state can prohibit married couples from using their own genes to have natural offspring together. I told you I demand that my wife and I be allowed to have kids together, but you dismissed me, saying it isn’t important, telling married couples they have the same right to have kids that unmarried couples or siblings or same-sex couples have, which is super obnoxious and disrespectful and utterly destroys marriage’s most inherent and important meaning for everyone.

  90. zaratoothbrush

    I told you I demand that my wife and I be allowed to have kids together, but you dismissed me, saying it isn’t important, telling married couples they have the same right to have kids that unmarried couples or siblings or same-sex couples have, which is super obnoxious and disrespectful and utterly destroys marriage’s most inherent and important meaning for everyone.

    You’re a loony – an absolute monster raving bloody loony. Please take your lifeless, loveless, colourless, delusional travesty of human life somewhere else, I’m so bored with you; I dare say I’m not the only one.

    Guys. does this really have to keep going?

  91. “telling married couples they have the same right to have kids that unmarried couples or siblings or same-sex couples have, which is super obnoxious and disrespectful and utterly destroys marriage’s most inherent and important meaning for everyone……”

    ..there are times that I’m ashamed to be a member of the human race and this is one such occasion.

  92. narcoticmusing

    I think that since it changes the genetic information from what it is in nature, it is genetic engineering

    I think that since it isn’t genetic engineering, it is misleading and deceptive to say that it is. Particularly as you give the example of designer babies which is genetic engineering, just to reinforce your deception.

    It would create a person with a genome that could not exist through natural procreation by existing people
    No it would not. This is either a lie, you have been misled, or you are ignorant of the truth. The genome of the product of same-sex gamete combinatorics is the same as if the two people of same sex could naturally procreate. There is no manipulation of genes that encode for and are used by the zygote (child).

    That’s the key distinguishing feature of genetic engineering. No it isn’t. The key distinguishing feature of genetic engineering is the manipulation of genes. I know, it sounds simple, because it is. Funny that.

    It sure isn’t natural reproduction if it “requires significant intervention by scientists”
    Can I assume you are against organ donation then? It is the same scenario. Both are not the changing of genes, both are situations where is is the genotype causing the rejection, both generate rejection due to the response to certain markers.

    It is freakin ridiculous that you guys insist on it being legal and say it’s a higher priority for gays to have conception rights…
    Please point to even ONE occasion where anyone on this thread has EVER (feel free to go through all the archives) suggested this or even implied this. I openly said i have no view on same-sex gamete combinatorics as there was no need because it is currently a non-issue.

    No one has. This is a complete lie. And you dare suggest people disrespect you when you lie and make shit like that up?

    you also want to deny me and my wife the feeling of social approval Don’t be a cry baby – you have no right to not have your feelings hurt. Get over yourself. You are willing to deny people actual rights just so you can “feel” good about being a bigot.

    Apologies Zara, but I already wrote most of this post by the time I saw your response :)

  93. zaratoothbrush

    Apologies Zara, but I already wrote most of this post by the time I saw your response

    Cool, I mean, I agree with everything you said, naturally, but I agreed with you the first time – I don’t think you should feel forced to reiterate it to the point of exhaustion just because some poor rube can’t bring himself to listen to you.

  94. Making babies from lab-created stem cells that represent no existing person and would be impossible to conceive naturally even if healthy is genetic engineering and is even more unethical and dangerous than genetic engineering by changing the chromosome sequence.

    It also isn’t a right to conceive offspring with someone of the same sex, or to change sex and reproduce as the other sex. So prohibiting it isn’t denying people any “actual rights.” But stripping procreation rights from marriage and declaring it equal to a same-sex couple or unmarried couple or siblings is denying me an actual right, being approved and allowed to procreate genetic offspring with a willing spouse of the other sex is an actual human right.

    What do you mean you aren’t demanding equal conception rights and demanding that same-sex procreation be legal? You are doing it right now, when you say things like “The genome of the product of same-sex gamete combinatorics is the same as if the two people of same sex could naturally procreate. ” First of all, two people of the same sex cannot naturally procreate, that’s the point, that’s why creating a genome that couldn’t exist naturally is GE. Second, aren’t you insisting that it be legal when you defend it like that? Didn’t you just say it would deny people a right to ban it?

    You guys are in a position to help millions of actual gay couples get all the benefits of protections and security they need, if you would stop insisting on same-sex conception. It’s insane! It’s cruel and callous and dangerous and anti-social and psychopathic. It can’t even be done and might never be possible. Give it up!

  95. narcoticmusing

    So prohibiting it isn’t denying people any “actual rights.”
    [Hugh sigh] JH – you were well aware, as I’ve said to the point of the ridiculous, that I’m not debating whether same-sex gamete combinatorics should be legal. The right I referred to is the right to have SSM recognised before the law. You know, the entire point of this thread that you continue to hijack and purposefully misinterpret anything anyone says on it? No wonder you’ve been banned on other threads.

    What do you mean you aren’t demanding equal conception rights and demanding that same-sex procreation be legal?
    Pointing out the misleading and deceptive statements of yours and/or flaws in your understanding of genetics is not the same as arguing for or against a cause.

    First of all, two people of the same sex cannot naturally procreate, that’s the point
    Either can infertile heterosexual couples or the elderly.

    Didn’t you just say it would deny people a right to ban it?
    No. I said you were denying SS-couples the right to marriage by falsely asserting that procreation was a requirement of marriage. Remember the point of this thread, SSM? Not your soap box.

    To deny SSM on a preference of yours that marriage and (natural) procreation be inextricably linked is “cruel and callous and dangerous and anti-social and psychopathic.” Furthermore, it cannot be done as we already recognise children outside of marriage and marriages without children.

  96. OK, we are making progress finally. Now you accept that it won’t be denying anyone a right if we ban same-sex conception, that’s good, we agree there is no right to procreate offspring with someone of the same sex. That’s half of what I am trying to accomplish, stopping manufacture of people that aren’t the natural offspring of a man and woman. Enacting an egg and sperm law will be enormously beneficial.

    Now the only problem is you think it’s fine for marriages to be prohibited from conceiving offspring together. The other half of what I’m trying to accomplish is preserving the right of married couples to conceive offspring together using their own genes. If we let couples marry that have no right to conceive offspring together, then that means marriage no longer affirms a right to conceive offspring together, and I won’t feel the social approval that I want to feel when I marry, that everyone who marries has felt throughout history. And married couples could be prohibited from using their own genes and forced to use lab-provided genes someday, if they are declared to have equal rights and equal marriages as same-sex couples.

    But at least you aren’t claiming that people have a right to conceive with someone of the same sex anymore. Do you agree that people do have a right to conceive with someone of the other sex (who consents, of course, and is eligible to marry)? That’s a big start and we can work from there.

  97. Wait, before going any further, does JH think that anything that’s not “banned” is a “right”?

    But at least you aren’t claiming that people have a right to conceive with someone of the same sex anymore. Do you agree that people do have a right to conceive with someone of the other sex (who consents, of course, and is eligible to marry)? That’s a big start and we can work from there.

    How can anyone have a “right to conceive”? What do they do if they can’t? Sue God?

  98. narcoticmusing

    Exactly Jeremy – hence my suffering in trying to respond to JH’s complete lack of any understanding of: the law in general, rights, science in general, genetics in general, assisted reproductive techonologies, and genetics.

    I will continue my eternal struggle with this idiot who thinks by saying I agree means I do. JH, to clarify in case you missed it: I DO NOT AGREE WITH YOU. THERE IS NO PROGRESS. YOUR ARGUMENTS ARE STUPID AND WOULD NOT CONVINCE A FIRST YEAR BIOLOGY STUDENT LET ALONE ME.

    But at least you aren’t claiming that people have a right to conceive with someone of the same sex anymore
    I never made that claim. Please go back over my posts. Quote me. Quote even ONCE where I made that claim. Oh, you can’t? It is because I didn’t. You harm your credibility (even further than using foxnews as a ‘scientific’ reference) when you outright lie all the time. Notice I quote you – you on the other hand resort to “interpreting” what I’ve said for your own convenience putting in things I never said.

    What I said is that NO ONE has a right to conceive. If they did, it would be enforceable. It is not.

    Nor is anyone “approved” to conceive. Or else they would require some form of licence to conceive. I hear your claim (despite you ignoring mine). To paraphrase, you claim that marriage is that licence to conceive. You are wrong. That is not the case, clearly, as we provide all the same benefits to couples who conceive in or outside of wedlock. Further, we do not deny marriage to those who cannot conceive (notice I did not say ‘will not’ conceive). People with no chance EVER of conceiving are still allowed to marry. THAT is why SSM should be allowed despite your misleading and deceptive arguments otherwise.

    Conception is neither a right nor a prohibition for ANYONE.

    Conception through assisted reproductive technologies is a completely different set of considerations. I have not, as I’ve repeated, formed a view on this for same-sex couples (although I do think they same sex couples should have access to ART with respect to 3rd party interventions, like egg/sperm donation).

    I am yet to hear a reasonable argument why same-sex combinatorics should not occur (not I said reasonable, not your stupid bigot based list of horribles arguments). I myself have serious concerns about any form of genetic engineering – however, as I also know that same-sex gamete combinatorics to form a zygote is NOT genetic engineering, I would need to consider it on its own merits. And as I have said, if it were only your arrangement’s I were to base my views on (in which you resorted to lies and trickery) I would think – hey, why would I believe the liar? See what credibility does JH? Your complete lack of it will convert people away from your cause.

    Go do some homework. Talk to a real biochemist and not foxnews.

  99. narcoticmusing

    Jeremey, JH also appears to believe that he has a “right” to feel all warm and gooey about denying others a right to marriage so that he can be in some exclusive club that doesn’t even represent what he thinks it does.

    Note to JH – WE HAVE NOT MADE PROGRESS DESPITE YOUR PATRONIZING, DECEITFUL BS.

    Look at my 4 Oct, 11:21 post – it summarises the arguments there and you are yet to provide any better rationale to support your positions, all of which I (far too) easily rebutted.

  100. zaratoothbrush

    Look at my 4 Oct, 11:21 post

    Actually narc, all that ever needed to be said on this subject was said concisely and precisely in the second paragraph of the first comment on this post….

  101. narcoticmusing

    Agreed, Zara.

  102. Procreation is one of the “basic civil rights of man.” What that means is that people have to be allowed to try, not that everyone is able to. Just that they can’t be sterilized or banned from attempting it with a person of their choice (with some relationships off limits if there is a supportable basis). Again, infertile and elderly people are not banned from attempting to procreate, they still enjoy the right to marry, to feel the approval of society saying that they are allowed to conceive offspring with each other’s genes, it won’t be bad or wrong if they conceive offspring of their genes. That is not something people should feel with a sibling or with someone of the same sex, because conceiving offspring with those relationships should be a serious crime.

    You have an opportunity to help millions of same-sex couples get security and benefits for their families, if you just give up the demand for equal conception rights and accept that people only have a right to procreate with someone of the other sex. Don’t be evil, don’t lie about your demand for legal same-sex conception by claiming to not have a position; you clearly all demand that it remain legal, even as you simultaneously want to strip the approval and right to procreate from marriage. It’s incongruous, and totally damaging to our civil rights and society. You guys are going to usher in terrible eugenic prohibitions and interventions which will destroy the basis of human rights and cost billions, waste energy, harm the environment, deprive sick people of medical resources, and on and on, just to prop up your silly claim that same-sex couples are equal. It’s so utterly harmful and stupid, millions of same-sex couples don’t need equal conception rights, they need all the OTHER rights!!!

  103. What you need to do is take the step that I thought you were taking above, of admitting that there is a difference in rights, that there is a right to procreate with someone of the other sex but not with the same-sex. As long as you insist that they have the same rights, it is unacceptable. Give up the demand for equal procreation rights, admit that the human right to procreate is only with someone of the other sex, and then go back and propose my Civil Union compromise that will give thousands of couples the security and benefits they need, without diminishing the rights of marriage or confusing people about their future reproductive potential with the same sex or as the other sex.

    Same-sex conception is unethical and needs to be prohibited and you should not keep refusing to admit this. It’s a stupid thing to insist on.

  104. Same-sex conception is unethical and needs to be prohibited and you should not keep refusing to admit this.

    Do you honestly think repeatedly asserting that has persuaded anyone?

    Just because something is “difficult” and “costly” isn’t a reason to prohibit it. It might be a reason not to fund it, but it’s not a reason to prohibit it. You’re yet to present a single rational reason it needs to be “prohibited”.

    You guys are going to usher in terrible eugenic prohibitions and interventions which will destroy the basis of human rights and cost billions, waste energy, harm the environment, deprive sick people of medical resources, and on and on,

    Mad.

    Procreation is one of the “basic civil rights of man.” What that means is that people have to be allowed to try, not that everyone is able to. Just that they can’t be sterilized or banned from attempting it with a person of their choice (with some relationships off limits if there is a supportable basis). Again, infertile and elderly people are not banned from attempting to procreate, they still enjoy the right to marry, to feel the approval of society saying that they are allowed to conceive offspring with each other’s genes, it won’t be bad or wrong if they conceive offspring of their genes.

    Who needs the “approval of society” to procreate? What kind of crazy big-government nutter thinks government should be telling people who and who they can’t have children with?

    That is not something people should feel with a sibling or with someone of the same sex, because conceiving offspring with those relationships should be a serious crime.

    Why? Seriously, ignoring your idiotic attempt to chuck incest in there (which significantly increases the risk of serious illness and disability in the foetus) – “a serious crime”, why? What possible evidence do you have of same sex couples conceiving offspring causing harm, since it’s never happened?

  105. Guys – yes, I know. I shouldn’t encourage him.

    But it’s so infuriatingly crazy!

  106. Wisdom Like Silence

    So Vin Diesel didn’t get in touch with me with my medal over the weekend, so is it Hugh Jackman or something? Because Hugh wont leave me alone. But he’s Wolverine and I am confused.

  107. You have an opportunity to help millions of same-sex couples get security and benefits for their families, if you just give up the demand for equal conception rights

    I’ve read through every post in this thread – and followed the SSM debate with great interest since its beginning – but until now I have never encountered anyone whose argument even touched on the issue of “equal conception rights” (whatever they are). To be honest I don’t really understand what JH is talking about.

    JH – can you help me out a bit by completing the following sentence for me:

    “A ‘conception right’ is, in effect, a person’s right to . . . . “

  108. Wisdom Like Silence

    Concieve horrible genetic mutations akin to the alien that begs Ripley for death.

  109. Wisdom Like Silence

    And/or babies.

  110. narcoticmusing

    JH, again your complete lack of understanding of genetics, medicine, ART, etc is horrifying. For example:

    infertile and elderly people are not banned from attempting to procreate

    1. You realise that many (if not most) people that are infertile at the gamete level (ie it isn’t merely a low count, the actual gametes are infertile) are so due to what is essentially a natural defence mechanism to them carrying high risk genetic disease. For example, cystic fibrosis sufferers are (generally) infertile. What you suggest (giving ‘conception rights’) to heterosexual couples would entitle cystic fibrosis suffers to breed and have this cruel disease spread. While cystic fibrosis sufferers should have all the same rights as others, no one with or who understands this disease would want their children at risk of it. ‘Clensing’ the disease from the genes would require ‘substantial intervention from scientists’ to an extent far beyond our current abilities and would be true genetic engeineering.

    2. You realise that gametes deteriorate with age right? So if, say, by some chance a 60, 70 or 80 year old were to procreate, the chance of genetic abnormality is actually HIGHER than if siblings were to procreate. You get that right? Furthermore, the public outcry why an 80 year old conceives is pretty high -meaning society does not really approve of the elderly conceiving. They do however approve of the elderly marrying.

    So by your own account, if it is all about protecting the genetic make-up, we should be forbidding anyone who carries or has a genetic disease and anyone above the risk threshold for birth defects (which is anyone above 45) from marrying.

    Maybe if you took a minute to understand the science you use to back your argument you may undesrtand why there is such opposition to it.

    Maybe if you considered that marriage and procreation are not actually linked, you just want them to be, then you would understand our cause. I have been married for as long as my best man has been with his partner. It is an abomination of justice that his long and loving relationship that, like mine, is childless (and will remain so) cannot be recognised but mine can.

  111. infertile and elderly people are not banned from attempting to procreate

    It’s probably also worth noting that same sex couples aren’t banned from making the attempt either.

  112. Wisdom Like Silence

    We’ve been discussing a moot point for almost a fortnight.

  113. Wisdom Like Silence

    Jeremy please god POST SOMETHING ELSE

  114. narcoticmusing

    In Jeremy’s defense, he did post something about the young Liberals… but we dropped the ball on that one. :)

  115. “A ‘conception right’ is, in effect, a person’s right to . . . . “

    conceive offspring using their own unmodified genes, with the person of their choice who is eligible and consents to marry. It just means the state can’t prohibit you from marrying and having sex and conceiving offspring, if you carry a genetic disease or are over 45 or the wrong race. But the state CAN rule out certain public relationships that are unethical to conceive together, that apply to everyone equally, such as siblings, and the same sex. It should also mean the state protects the public’s fertility from unhealthy and coercive forces.

  116. Wisdom Like Silence

    So kids born out of wedNO I WILL NOT FEED YOUR ADDICTION

  117. “You’re yet to present a single rational reason it needs to be “prohibited”.”

    Sure I have, many times. It will become an expensive entitlement, use up resources, be too risky, violate the rights of the child to natural origins, will probably lead to other forms of genetic engineering, undermine equality and dignity, and there is no right to do it, so we don’t have to let anyone try it.

    “Who needs the “approval of society” to procreate?”

    No one needs marriage to procreate, but lots of people still want to feel the approval of society to feel the same legitimacy their parents and ancestors felt when they got married, it is what makes their sexual intercourse licit in their church and their God. I don’t want marriage to mean nothing, I don’t want to feel society is withholding approval and could tell us we aren’t allowed to have procreative sex or use our own genes to conceive offspring.

    “What kind of crazy big-government nutter thinks government should be telling people who and who they can’t have children with?”

    Do you think prohibiting siblings from procreating is big government? Neither is prohibiting same-sex procreation. If we allow it, and strip the protection of procreation rights from marriage, it will lead to big government, invasion of privacy, government regulation, etc.

  118. “What you suggest (giving ‘conception rights’) to heterosexual couples would entitle cystic fibrosis suffers to breed and have this cruel disease spread.”

    Yes, absolutely!! That’s the point, they are entitled to pass on their genes. Everyone has equal conception rights, we should not say that someone is not allowed “to breed” because they have a gene for something or other. Do you see how that would require big government and loss of equality? You are making a 100-year old argument for eugenics, suggesting that marriage and procreation rights be separated, and people be tested for genetic fitness before being allowed to have children, and possibly told they must use better genes or modified genes.

  119. Wisdom Like Silence

    He’s like a T-Rex from Jurassic Park, if you don’t ask it questions or offer up any syllogism’s he’ll go away.

  120. “It’s probably also worth noting that same sex couples aren’t banned from making the attempt either.”

    They should be. But if they aren’t, they should be allowed to marry.

  121. narcoticmusing

    JH- Mondo was being a little tongue in cheek there, you obviously missed it. He was meaning that same sex couples are not barred from having sex and thus attempting to procreate, despite that this of course will be a fruitful as say, an infertile or elderly couple. This is again pointing out that ART/genetics/etc are completely separate issues to people having sex or not. Or people marrying or not. Or people having children or not.

    Your answer suggests we should ban homosexual sex. That is unconstitutional in Australia and, to my understanding, the US.

  122. Indeed narc – fruitlessly attempting to procreate with each other is an age-old human tradition and the gays do it as much as the straights.

    Whether or not these attempts lead to successful conception isn’t relevant to the concept of marriage. In case you missed that JH I’ll say it again: the ability to naturally conceive with your partner is not a recognised precondition to marriage.

    If it were then marriage would be denied to a range of other people for whom marriage is, in fact, not denied. People like the infertile and the elderly.

    You can squirm around that fact all you like but it just isnt going to go away.

  123. I mean doing things that might actually result in a child being conceived to an unethical type of relationship should be prohibited. Incest, rape, adultery, cloning, genetic engineering, and same-sex conception should all be prohibited. And fornication too, I think, but it doesn’t have to be policed or punished, since we now have reliable paternity tests and child support laws that make unmarried fathers the equivalent of divorced fathers, essentially marrying and divorcing couples automatically if they have a baby. But same-sex couples aren’t doing anything in the bedroom that might result in a child being created, it’s private intimate behavior.

  124. narcoticmusing

    I mean doing things that might actually result in a child being conceived
    Well, no chance of that to an infertile couple or the elderly.

    to an unethical type of relationship should be prohibited
    And here’s the rub isn’t it. You are a bigot.

  125. narcoticmusing

    Incest, rape, adultery, cloning, genetic engineering, and same-sex conception should all be prohibited.

    So forced abortions then for anyone who “conceives” outside of wedlock or is raped. Because obviously, being raped isn’t enough – you would prefer that they also have mandatory abortions carried out. Wow, you are so compassionate.

  126. I mean doing things that might actually result in a child being conceived to an unethical type of relationship should be prohibited. Incest, rape, adultery, cloning, genetic engineering, and same-sex conception should all be prohibited.

    Why do you describe same sex relationships “an unethical type of relationship” JH?

  127. Because attempting to use lab-created artificially methylated experimental gamets that do not even represent a real person violates the rights of the person being created. There is no right to manufacture people this way, seemingly for sport, and the dangers and costs and the very intentionality of manufacturing a person from experimental gametes immediately override the desires of people to subject a person to their desires.

    narc, of course no forced abortions for anyone, I was just listing all of the unethical ways to conceive a child I could think of.

    And all male-female couples might create a baby, we don’t know or care if they think they might be privately incapable of it, it’s not a public fact that is at all relevant to their right to marry or have sex, nor is there an age limit. You guys know this stuff by now. Being the same sex is public and it is publicly a bad thing to possibly conceive offspring.

    I hope you guys see that you are indeed demanding to be allowed to procreate with someone of the same sex, demanding a right to do something that isn’t possible and might never be possible and would certainly (already is) costly and bad for society and harming people, and throwing millions of gay couples under the bus who don’t need or want procreation rights but need all the other rights of marriage. And one of you has now gone on record as suggesting that people with cystic fibrosis do not have a right to conceive offspring naturally. That’s also unacceptable and violates people’s rights. But those are consequences of same-sex marriage, it destroys everyone’s marriage and means all sorts of unethical violations of human rights.

  128. Because attempting to use lab-created artificially methylated experimental gamets that do not even represent a real person violates the rights of the person being created.

    But JH – what you’re describing there is the act of artificially creating a baby from two same-sex parents. That’s a choice that a same-sex couple might make, just as any couple might elect to pursue unethical behaviour.

    But why does that make same-sex relationships unethical in general? The fact that participants in a relationship might elect to pursue an unethical act is surely irrelevant to the validity of that type of relationship in the eyes of the law.

    If a heterosexual husband and wife elect to go on a killing spree does that render all heterosexual relationships ‘unethical’ in your eyes?

  129. Come on, “unethical type of relationship” referred to conceiving offspring. Relationships that are unethical to conceive with each other are prohibited to conceive with each other, and prohibited to have sexual intercourse, and prohibited to marry. I’m not saying just being in a same-sex relationship is unethical, remember I am trying to enact a Civil Union compromise that will give same-sex couples all the other rights and benefits of marriage except the right to conceive offspring together, in the form of Civil Unions defined as “marriage minus conception rights.”

  130. JH. THERE IS NO “RIGHT” TO CONCEPTION IN MARRIAGE EVEN NOW. You can prove this by trying to enforce it against your wife or the state. Good luck with that.

  131. It’s the right of the marriage, of the man and woman together. They cannot be told by the state that they may not have sex or procreate offspring (they can be separated by incarceration or conscription, but that’s different, once they get back together they are allowed to have sex and procreate again).

    Remember, there ARE relations that can be told they may not have sex or procreate offspring, but they are never allowed to marry each other: siblings, fathers-daughters, etc. A marriage is always approval to have sex and procreate (though not a guarantee of success). It should always be approval to have sex and procreate, we should never allow couples that are publicly prohibited from having sex and procreating to marry, that would change marriage by stripping the approval from marriage and therefore from everyone’s marriage.

  132. It’s the right of the marriage, of the man and woman together. They cannot be told by the state that they may not have sex or procreate offspring

    Um, no. Not being banned from something doesn’t make it a right. You’re not banned from owning a Mercedes (unless you’re Alan Jones) but you don’t have a right to have a Mercedes provided.

    I think we see the whole problem you have. You think that there’s rights, and things that the government can prohibit, and nothing in between. You think a “right” is just “something not prohibited”. But a “right” is far more than that.

    Conception in marriages isn’t going to be banned, but that doesn’t make it a “right”.

    we should never allow couples that are publicly prohibited from having sex and procreating to marry

    Gay people are neither prohibited from having sex nor prohibited from procreating.

  133. Same-sex couples should be publicly prohibited from procreating, from conceiving offspring together, like siblings are. Insisting that they should be allowed to conceive offspring together, which can’t be done and might never be possible, you are making life considerably worse for millions of same-sex couples that want to have all the OTHER benefits and protections of marriage, which they could get with CU’s defined as “marriage minus conception rights.”

    There are lots of things we are allowed to do that are not rights. Rights are things that CAN’T be prohibited, because they are rights. They are based on human history, on our natures, and are slightly cultural but generally universal. Changing sex and/or reproducing with someone of the same-sex is not a right, so it CAN be prohibited. It doesn’t have to be, we could allow it, but we don’t have to allow it. Similarly, we can allow sibling marriage, but it is not a right, our human history is built upon the wrongness of it.

    Lack of wrongness is a good way to think of rights, too. If something is a right, it is not wrong to do, even if other people disapprove, one should not be made to feel guilty. This applies to someone with a genetic disease marrying and procreating offspring and potentially passing on their genetic disease, or someone over 45 marrying and having children with their deteriorating sperm. Narc implied that those people had no right to procreate offspring, but they certainly do, and that is what I am trying to protect. You guys seem to think that if we allow them to procreate, then we have to allow labs to attempt same-sex procreation, but one is a right and one isn’t. One is free and natural and has no government intrusion into anyone’s private business, and the children born have the same equal origins as everyone else; the other is expensive, artificial, unnatural, and results in government intrusion into everyone’s genetics, and the children born are detached from the human family, not created equal, created on purpose with those risks. It’s totally unethical and we can and should stop it.

  134. narcoticmusing

    Hmm, instead of saying “narc implied” why don’t you quote me? Oh that is right, because I did not imply that. I said that by your reasoning which was same sex can’t pro-create because it would require ‘significant intervention from scientists’ (with your fabulously credible peer reviewed scientifically recognised source, fox news). You also said same sex pro-creation was wrong because it would require genetic engineering.

    My response to you was that a person with cystic fibrosis, in order to pro-create, would also require ‘significant intervention from scientists’ and would most definitely (unlike same sex couples) require genetic engineering. You are yet to refute this logic beyond homo bad hetero good. I did not imply a person with cystic fibrosis should not have a right to breed – I was pointing out the flaw in your reasoning that you are fine with hetero cyctic fibrosis couples having ‘breeding rights’ (which btw don’t exist) despite that they actually meet your genetic engineering test, but you aren’t happy for ss-couples to marry, with or wihout children, despite that they don’t meet your rationale. Ergo, you are a hypocrite who just wants to strip rights from homosexuals because it suits you to do so. It makes you “feel” good about your rights when you can be special and deny someone else.

    The only actual “right” in dispute here is the right to be recognised in marriage before the law. There is no ‘right’ to conception – no matter how hard you want there to be, it won’t magically appear. There is no ‘right’ to ART, and our laws recognise access to ART with or without marriage – hence, conception/ART./etc not related to marriage. Don’t get a hernia trying to make it so.

  135. narc: “What you suggest (giving ‘conception rights’) to heterosexual couples would entitle cystic fibrosis suffers to breed and have this cruel disease spread.” and again here you say that conception rights “don’t exist.”

    That’s very wrong, everyone has an equal right to marry and every marriage has a right to have sex and to conceive offspring using their own genes. There’s no guarantee, but we can’t be prohibited based on our genes, only certain “kinds of relationships” can be prohibited such as siblings and same-sex. People have a right to try to get healthy, but healthy people still may not conceive with someone in those relationships. Stop demanding equal conception rights!

  136. You are correct that ART is not a right of marriage, especially use of sperm donors and surrogates, though IVF using the couple’s own genes could be considered a right of marriage via marital privacy, in that it is none of anyone’s business what position the couple used to have intercourse, and IVF could be considered just a sexual position. Indeed in the early days of IVF, all of the couples were married and they used the couple’s own gametes and it was defended as a right of marriage to use IVF, everyone involved insisted they would never do it for unmarried women, etc etc. Slippery slope.

    But all ART could be banned without it affecting any marriage’s right to have a baby, because they’d still have the right, just less of a chance of actually having a baby. But it’d remain legal and approved for them to have a baby, which means a lot even if they don’t want to or are unable to. It’s when marriage is given to couples that are publicly prohibited from conceiving offspring that all marriages lose the right to have a baby, as it becomes something that can be prohibited even for married couples. You guys don’t mind that, you think that is a good idea to make it so we can prohibit unfit people from breeding. I think that is a bad idea and marriage should continue to approve and protect the right to conceive offspring. You guys also think that labs should be allowed to make offspring of same-sex couples, while I think it would be much better public policy to rule that out and stick to all people being created equal, as the natural offspring of a man and woman. Your positions have become very clear, even as some of you claim to not have a position on same-sex conception or conception rights of marriage. If you changed your position and stopped demanding conception rights for same-sex couples and stopped saying marriage doesn’t protect a right to procreate offspring together with the couple’s own genes, you could help millions of same-sex couples and their families around the world achieve equal protections via CU’s defined as “marriage minus conception rights.”

  137. narcoticmusing

    marriage’s right to have a baby

    and

    But it’d remain legal and approved for them to have a baby

    You are not hearing us: there is NO right to have a baby with marriage, hence you can have babies without marriage and marriages without babies. Get it through your head. No one approves people to have babies. You personally may disapprove, but that doesn’t impact who can or can’t.

    You want there to be such a right, because it is the basis of your cause. It is not, however, true.

    If you changed your position and stopped demanding conception rights for same-sex couples
    You again don’t get it. You want to associate this with us in order to somehow degrade our position but it simply is not true. You are yet to point to a single source of this mysterious right or approval you claim occurs with marriage, despite the evidence we have presented you to the contrary. No one is demanding conception rights for same-sex couples (nor for hetero couples for that matter).

    There are two reasons for this:
    1. There are no conception rights to be demanded or denied to either same sex or hetero couples.
    2. Conception is not a pre-condition/requirement of marriage, nor is marriage a requirement of conception. Hence there is no need to demand the ability to conceive as it is not a requirement. IF it were, then yes, it would need to be considered too, but it isn’t so there is no need to consider it.

    Thus, no need or even desire for us to demand equality of conception rights when no one has them. No need for us to demand ability to conceive with marriage for ss-couples when hetero couples do not have this, so it isn’t an equality issue.

    Summary of evidence AGAINST your argument that you are yet to refute:
    1a. That ART is provided to people outside of marriage is EVIDENCE that marriage is not a pre-condition of conception.
    1b. That children are legally born outside of wedlock and granted all the same rights/benefits with no requirement for termination etc is evidence that marriage is not a pre-condition of conception. This exists for same sex couples (ie a lesbian who has a child still has all the same rights as any other mum).
    2. That marriage is allowed to all infertile couples is evidence that ability to conceive (even the most remote potential) is not required for marriage.
    3. That marriage is allowed to couples who out-right refuse to conceive regardless of ability is evidence that conception is not a requirement for marriage.
    4.That you cannot enforce sex or conception against another (including your spouse) is evidence that these are not rights (however attempting to is likely to be evidence of misogyny and or endorsing rape in marriage).
    5. That siblings are barred from marriage is not evidence that same-sex couples should be. That ban is due to TWO things, firstly the risk of undue influence (which is also a risk in polygamy) and secondly the risk of recessive genotypes being expressed in the phenotype (birth defects). If your argument is based on the sibling genetic defect rationale, you should ban anyone with an expressed genetic disease and/or a dominant genetic defect (eg Hodgkinsons disease). Ergo there is no similarity between sibling unions and same sex ones, particularly at the genetic risk level which is your argument. There is however similarity between siblings and genetic disease dominant subjects at the genetic level only (noting that the risk of undue influence is no longer an issue). We do not advocate for that for the same reason we think your entire argument is BS. But if you are to be consistent, you (not us) must include genetic disease in your basis.

  138. No, because the whole point is to preserve everyone’s equal conception rights and not start testing people and forcing them to use modified gametes or substitute gametes. That would be expensive and bad public policy, and destroy the basis of civil rights, that we are all created equal and have equal rights. One of them is the right to marry and procreate even if you have a gene for Hodgkinsons. It shouldn’t be a crime to have sex with your wife and have children together, but it should be a crime to have sex with your sister or a child or someone married to someone else and it should be a crime to make people that are not the union of a man and a woman’s natural unmodified gametes. There are ways to avoid passing on a genetic disease: either avoiding children altogether and choosing to be foster parents or adopt kids, or using PGD, or using donor sperm, it’ll still be legal. I don’t think using donor gametes should be allowed, but that’s a separate issue, it won’t be affected by the three laws I’m proposing. And I think PGD should be legal but only for a few specific diseases, not for things like sex, or height or eye color. But it’d definitely be a slippery slope.

    That whole summary of points 1 to 5 is all true, but misses the point: There should be something between 3 and 4: Marriage is NOT allowed to all couples that are prohibited from having sex or procreating offspring together. You do realize that some relationship types are not allowed to marry, right? Why is that? Couples like siblings, people already married, children, people that don’t consent, and we should add (now that it is remotely possible and people are talking about it) people of the same sex. See, the prohibition applies to everyone equally because it applies to the public facts about the relationship, whether they are siblings, or the same sex. The healthiest people in the world can’t marry if they are siblings, even though their baby would probably be relatively healthy too. It’s not just for the genetic risks of any one couple, it’s more long term and general about the effect it has on a societal scale. And it’s not just the undue influence of one sibling over another, it is also essential for society and everyone to have strong secure trusting family bonds free from sexual possibility, which would completely undermine the stability of families.

    And again, I DO demand to be allowed to conceive offspring with my spouse using our own genes. Even if we don’t or can’t, I demand to feel the same feeling that all of my ancestors have felt throughout history when they got married: that society has said we can have sex and make babies together, with each other, and it’s our right and we may do it as much as we want. And I also think that same-sex couples should not be allowed to make offspring together, I think they should be prohibited and go to jail if they make a serious attempt.

    I think I’ve proved my point everyone. For years I’ve been saying that same-sex marriage means either denying that marriage protects the right to procreate, or that it means allowing same-sex conception instead of prohibiting it like we should to protect children and save money and energy and other reasons. You’ve just confirmed that you do deny that marriage protects the procreate, and I had said I thought we had made progress when someone here said there is no right to attempt same sex conception. But until you agree that there should be a law that prohibits trying it, you are just blowing smoke. It is currently legal.

  139. I’m gonna stop checking in on this conversation because you guys aren’t listening to me and I’m sick of repeating myself. I was hoping, like I always do, to find some reasonable people who, when confronted with the issues of same-sex conception using stem cell derived gametes, and the need to preserve everyone’s equal right to use their own genes to conceive biological offspring with their spouse, would come to agree with me that those are important, but you guys are Transhumanists and Eugenicists here, and even after learning of the risks, costs, and harms, say, so what, we want to allow same-sex conception and deny individual conception rights, and we don’t care about same-sex couples that are currently in immediate need of legal recognition either, they can wait. You guys have chosen conception rights for same sex couples over all the other rights and benefits of marriage that are actually needed by real people. You have rejected the Egg and Sperm Civil Union Compromise, which is just really stupid, all because it stops same-sex marriage. But is that really so important that you don’t care about destroying equal rights (by denying equal conception rights), human dignity (by allowing manufacture of genetically designed people), costing billions (all the research and regulation and providing it), and wasting energy and resources?

    If you change your thinking and want to help actual couples that have no recognition and don’t need equal conception rights, remember the name: The Egg And Sperm Civil Union Compromise. Propose it in Australia and New Zealand and everywhere else where same-sex marriage was just voted down.

    Thanks for the chat. I’m moving on.
    John Howard
    Arlington, Massachusetts, USA

  140. Did JH ever present any actual “risks, costs and harms” from gay ppl having kids different from heterosexual couples using ART? No?

    See ya!

  141. “denying that marriage protects the right to procreate”

    Why yes. Because it doesn’t. If doesn’t NOW. Hence no enforceable right against your spouse or the state.

  142. narcoticmusing

    I was hoping, like I always do, to find some reasonable people who…
    No, you were hoping to find people who would simply agree with you – instead you got people who provided reasoned debate and reasoned argument and evidence as to why your position was incorrect. Rather than us change our mind, perhaps, given we gave you evidence and you did not give us any evidence and answered all of your points (where you, as you rightly described, simply repeated yourself as if saying the same thing over and over would make it true), you might consider changing your position.

  143. Wisdom Like Silence

    GATTACA! GATTACA! GATTACA!

  144. narcoticmusing

    Did JH ever present any actual “risks, costs and harms” from gay ppl having kids different from heterosexual couples using ART? No?

    Well he did with a pretty major BUT. His risks, costs and harms only came into play if you accepted his premise that marraige provided some sort of right to genetic merger of parental gametes. So he posited that the risk, costs, harms were regarding enetic engineering of gametes in order for them to merge despite having same sex parents (with a Gattaca designer babies slippery slope as WLS refers to above) being required.

    We rejected that entire premise (with evidence rejecting both the rights aspect and the genetics aspect) and as such, all of his risks, costs and harms were not applicable. His assertions of rights were shown to be false and his claims about genetic manipulation were not only false, but only applied to manipulating gay parents gametes, as he was quite happy to see genetic manipulation and/or ART for heterosexuals (noting that ART and genetic manipulation are different things but he liked to merge them as did his experts he cited on foxnews).

  145. Wisdom Like Silence

    “…his experts he cited on foxnews).”
    I don’t understand the premise.

  146. narcoticmusing

    I tried to point out that ‘expert’ and ‘foxnews’ was an oxymoron.

  147. Sorry couldn’t resist checking back in to see how you wrapped it up.

    One correction:

    “he was quite happy to see genetic manipulation and/or ART for heterosexuals”

    No I’m not, the law against genetic manipulation would prohibit all creation of people that are not the union of a man and a woman’s unmodified sperm and egg. It would prohibit everyone from creating people using genetic engineering too, that’s the point. And I oppose all use of ART, especially gamete donation and surrogacy, by hetero couples too (though no ARTs that people currently do would be prohibited by my proposal because it is all natural fertilization of an egg and a sperm, it would only prohibit things we haven’t yet done, such as same-sex procreation and genetic engineering and cloning.) I’ve only said that some forms of ART for heterosexual couples might qualify as private medicine and be a right of marriage, if they attempt to join the husband and wife’s unmodified gametes, and thus could not be prohibited, whereas no forms of ART for same-sex couples could be private or is a right, and so could be prohibited. And I say it’d be great public policy to do that, and is terrible policy not to.

    Other than that, I’ll let your final wrap up stand, as you prove my point: SSM either means denying that a married man and woman have a right to conceive offspring together from their own genes (which you do, and I vehemently object to), and/or it means allowing same-sex couples to conceive offspring together (which you seem fine with, and I say is harmful and unnecessary). And you don’t care about actual same-sex couples that don’t need equal conception rights or the word marriage, but do need legal recognition and security.

  148. narcoticmusing

    JH, your own points contradict each other.

    You say: “married man and woman have a right to conceive offspring together from their own genes”
    But then say: “prohibit all creation of people that are not the union of a man and a woman’s unmodified sperm and egg”

    Our point is that infertile people (particularly the elderly and those infertile at the genetic level, such as my example of cystic fibrosis sufferers) are in exactly the same position as same-sex couples with respect to capacity to conceive offspring together from their own genes.

    You consistently say that a cystic fibrosis sufferer and the elderly and the infertile, under your proposed system, would be entitled to marry. As we point out over and over, there is no difference in the fertility/conception capacity of these couples and same sex couples. All can attempt (ie have sex) despite that none will succeed without intervention. Ergo, your own argument is completely inconsistent and discriminatory against homosexuals.

    As for same sex couples who don’t “need” the word marriage – who are you to determine that for someone else? What gives you the right to decide who can and cannot be recognised as married in a secular society? The right to be recognised as married is the only right in question here. The rest of what you speak of are completely separate issues to be dealt with, with completely separate regulatory regimes, just as they are now with. There is no reason to presume that the changing marriage laws will lead to any change in ART and/or genetics laws as that would require its own argument on the merits (or lack there of).

  149. Wisdom Like Silence

    Except the Illuminati and the MKUltra Pt. 5 tests

  150. The proposal (have you even looked at it?) is for three laws to be enacted as a package deal: Ban genetic engineering with an Egg and Sperm law, prescribe the effect of marriage as approving and allowing the couple to conceive offspring with their own genes, and recognize CU’s as if they were marriages if they are defined as “marriage minus conception rights.”

    The Egg and Sperm Civil Union Compromise
    http://www.eggandsperm.org

    Infertile and elderly couples would not be publicly prohibited from conceiving offspring together by an egg and sperm law, but couples of the same-sex would be. That makes them like siblings, not infertile people. It’s not about the ability or desire, it is about the right to procreate, and no one should be given it with someone of the same sex.

    Damn

  151. Did anyone get the bit where he said that if we banned SS couples from trying to procreate it would end war?
    I am still giggling.
    The cause of all wars from the dawn of time – those pesky SS couples trying to procreate. Oil? Gold? Territory? Scarce resources? HA.

  152. Wisdom Like Silence

    … I don’t know how to appropriately respond to that. What’s worse is I don’t know how to inappropriately respond either.

  153. narcoticmusing

    WLS – I will attempt an appropriate response notwithstanding my eye-twitch.

    Infertile and elderly couples would not be publicly prohibited from conceiving offspring together by an egg and sperm law, but couples of the same-sex would be.
    Why not? Why should your rule only apply to homosexuals? If it is a rule, that you claim is not bigotted, how then can it only apply to one group and not another?

    Saying it (the rule) shouldn’t apply elderly/infertile couples because that would make them like siblings isn’t a reason. Saying that same-sex couples are like siblings isn’t a reason. These are assertions – WHY is what we are after here.

    I know you feel fatigued from repeating yourself but that is because you are yet to answer our very simple questions. You keep repeating the same assertions (many of which are not true but even if we assume they are, they are assertions, not reasons).

    Example 1: All your reasons regarding the dangers of same-sex gamete combinatorics – even if we assumed for arguements sake they were true, they all apply to the elderly and infertile. So apply the rule to all or don’t apply it. Simply saying, no it won’t apply is not a reason WHY it won’t apply. And simply saying it only applies to same-sex isn’t a reason WHY it only applies to same sex couples. If your rationale is based on the fear of genetic manipulation and the inability to conceive without said intervention then that rationale forms the policy. Policies aren’t based on your own gut instinct or interpretation of the world, policies require rationales.
    Example 2: Your ‘right to attempt to conceive’ rule – even if we conceded it was a right – this can equally apply to same-sex couples as to infertile/elderly couples – sure, none of them have a hope in hell of conceiving, but they can all have sex and “attempt” to conceive. Note that does not include any form of intervention (ie ART etc).

    So if you are tired of repeating yourself, maybe you should consider answering the questions. Repeating yourself over and over will not convince people – you require a convincing argument (and preferably some evidence too). You have neither.

    And no, I haven’t read your foolish policy. Based on what you’ve said thus far, why the hell would I? You haven’t provided a single rationale point – everything you’ve said is based on false truths or double standards (ie discrimination). It is not enough to simply assert something is so.

  154. Wisdom Like Silence

    Still waiting for my medal from Hugh @ rhiannondavis, he assure’s me its in the mail.

  155. It’s pretty simple JH. Being married does not bestow an enforceable right to conceive children, and thus allowing same sex marriage would not bestow any similar such right.

    Ergo your entire argument is based on a demonstrably false premise.

    You object to marriage equality because you believe it will mandate a government program to facilitate same sex reproduction. This is a false (and quite frankly ridiculous) belief – based on absolutely nothing other than an apparent failure to maintain a firm grip on reality.

    Your argument is irrational nonsense and you should not be surprised when intelligent people dismiss it outright.

    As has happened in this thread.

  156. narcoticmusing

    And the award for telling it how it is, once again goes to Mondo. :)

  157. Wisdom Like Silence

    I’d just like to point out that I settled the whole debate like a week ago.

  158. narcoticmusing

    True that, WLS.

    Although, my personal fav of yours was this:
    So kids born out of wedNO I WILL NOT FEED YOUR ADDICTION

    Not often I actually laugh out loud at this blog. I tip my hat to you sir. :)

  159. Wisdom Like Silence

    I am a humble servant.

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