Corvino and Gallagher to Discuss Book

Maggie Gallagher and I will discuss our new book Debating Same-Sex Marriage, just released from Oxford University Press, at the Institute for American Values on Thursday June 7 at 6 pm EDT. The event will be live-streamed, here.

7 Comments for “Corvino and Gallagher to Discuss Book”

  1. posted by Mark F. on

    I can’t imagine how this could be that interesting since Maggie will just be rehashing the same stupid arguments she is famous for.

  2. posted by JohnInCA on

    I want to provide for my partner and ensure our future children will be as secure and stable as possible should the worst come to pass.

    Maggie wants to make sure that can’t happen.

    I’m not sure what there is to discuss.

  3. posted by TomJeffersonIII on

    But, JohnInCA…surely you understand that marriage is and has always been a sacred and unchanging institution between two white Christian families who arrange a lifelong union between their pre-teen or young teenager kids in order to benefit the family’s economically and beget legitimate heirs (who can be arranged into a marriage in a few years) ;0)

    Seriously I remember reading something about how the average age for a woman’s first marriage in colonial times was like 12 and a woman who was unmarried in her early 20s was basically deemed to be useless, if not dangerous.

    It might be interesting if Gallagher explained why (in light of the many changes made) the government should care about the sex of a couple for the purposes of a secular marriage.

    One could, at least, argue that the white colonial-early America definition of marriage had a rational, if prejudiced, reason for excluding gay couples.

    But once you have a secular marriage option, do not require an interest or ability to beget children, the fashion way, the government pretty much has no reason to care about the sex of a couple.

    • posted by Houndentenor on

      I’m sure very young arranged marriages happened, but I find it rare in my own family’s history for anyone to married until about 20. (Usually no later than 25 though.) Men were often expected to show they could support a family before a daughter would be allowed to marry him. Perhaps there were pockets of early teen marriages, but my own family research yields very few examples of that. I think it’s mostly an assumption not based on much statistical data.

      The problem with arguing about marriage is that it always begins with the erroneous assumption that marriage has always been what it has been in 20th and 21st century America. That’s just not true. It ignores the pervasive practice of polygamy (which continues today in much of the world) and women basically being property. There’s also the assumption that marriage was created by the church and was always a religious institution. That’s just not borne out by any reading of history. Couples married in front of the church well into the middle ages because the church wanted nothing to do with the ceremonies. Churches were late to the game of marrying. So don’t let people tell you that marriage was always a sacrament of the church. The church was a late adopter in adding the marriage rite.

    • posted by John D on

      I don’t think they were marrying off 12-year olds in the colonial era. I think they waited until girls were a ripe old age of 14. Even so, due to high mortality rates, the average marriage lasted 12 years. (Think of that, married off at 12, dead at 24.)

      Of course, the women were typically married off much younger than the men. As with Houndentenor, I’ve done some genealogy research. I remember stumbling on an 18th century Canadian colonist who went through four wives. Childbirth was hazardous.

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