Sunday, November 12, 2006

Zero, One, Infinity.

When thinking about solutions to problems, there are three interesting numbers: zero, one, and infinity.

Take the issue of gay marriage. In most states, the answer is one: there is one case where marriage is OK-- a couple consisting of a man and a woman.

In Massachusetts we currently have the infinity solution-- any two people, regardless of sex, can get married. Two men, two women, two transgendered people, two hermaphrodites, or any "one plus one" combination works.

But there's another possible answer: zero. If you can get away with it, zero is usually the best answer; it's as simple a solution as possible ("do nothing"). For marriage, the zero answer is get the government out of the marriage business. Why the heck is government involved in marriage in the first place? "Marriage is a sacred institution" say the fundamentalists, and they're right!

Churches (of all flavors) are the realm of the sacred, not government.

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