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Michigan AG Bill Schuette Claims Marriage Just For Producing Children

Flag_of_Michigan.svgEveryone is waiting for Michigan Attorney General Bill Schuette to announce his support for forcing the dissolution of any marriage that does not produce children. It just is not suggested that anyone actually hold their breath waiting.

Schuette has filed a brief in response to a motion for summary judgement in the Doboer v Snyder and Schuette suit. The case is before Judge Friedman currently in the Eastern District Court of Michigan. The suit was brought by a lesbian couple seeking to get joint adoption for their children.

Second-parent adoption is not permitted in Michigan. The judge has expanded the suit to include same-sex marriage.

Schuette claims in his filing that “one of the paramount purposes of marriage in Michigan — and at least 37 other states that define marriage as a union between a man and a woman — is, and has always been, to regulate sexual relationships between men and women so that the unique procreative capacity of such relationships benefits rather than harms society.”

Various anti-LGBT groups have made that case in court, all of them unsuccessfully.

Managing Director of Equality Michigan, Emily Dievendorf, stated that “This absurd overreach is a desperate move by a man with too much power. Attorney General Shuette’s insistence on government in our personal lives is hypocritical, and in conflict with the Supreme Court of the United States. Ten years ago when the U.S. Supreme Court struck down sodomy laws, and this past summer when it ruled against DOMA, it found that regulating sex for the purpose of procreation is not a role for our government. Marriage is about more than just procreation, as the Supreme Court said this June, ‘marriage is a way for couples to define themselves by their commitment to each other.’ Suggesting the benefit of marriage is limited to just producing children is more insulting and damaging to the institution of marriage than anything Schuette fears. The notion that people who cannot, or choose not to, have children are not worthy of committing their life to another person is preposterous.”

She went on to say that “If it were not so harmful, it would be amusingly ironic that an attorney general whose party supports deregulation, smaller government is demanding this larger regulatory role for government in our daily lives. This brief also flies in the face of any family values platform. In the United States the share of unmarried couples has increased by 25% over the last decade and in 2012 there were 56,315 marriages and 39,892 divorces in Michigan – both statistics largely representing opposite-sex couples. If Attorney General Shuette wishes to preserve the institution of marriage, he should be allowing and encouraging both same and opposite-sex couples to opt in. The attorney general is fooling nobody on this most recent attempt to stop progress for LGBT families. In truth, as long as the law is tied to marriage the lack of marriage equality creates instability on every level and that is no good for anybody.”



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2 Responses to Michigan AG Bill Schuette Claims Marriage Just For Producing Children

  1. Earl Smith

    September 24, 2013 at 5:33 pm

    Bill Schuette is a complete waste of skin. He wastes taxpayers dollars on crap like this and the “fight against the terrible pot-smokers!” Heaven forbid the state allow something that brings many people relief and a source of income as well. The people have voted, Bill. They feel differently about marijuana than you do and as the younger generation gets older and takes your office from you things will finally get better. You don’t have to like it. You just have to do what you were hired to do. Remember who you work for! Keep your religious beliefs at home and church. We don’t care how you feel. We just want you to do your job.

  2. Pat Carbonell

    September 20, 2013 at 9:57 am

    Okay, just a bit of Devil’s Advocate here (I do think the AG is an idiot, however…)

    He wrote: “one of the paramount purposes of marriage in Michigan … is, and has always been, to regulate sexual relationships between men and women so that the unique procreative capacity of such relationships benefits rather than harms society.”

    Everyone’s going on about how that means he thinks the only reason for marriage is having kids… and that’s not what he’s saying. He’s saying that the state has a vested interest in encouraging legal bonds between couples who can get pregnant without trying or even thinking about it. The “benefits/harms” bit is referring to the burden placed on the state by single mothers on welfare, by teen mothers who don’t finish high school, ad nauseum.

    Where he screws up is that what the state should be encouraging is stable, legal relationships between the heads of households, regardless of sexual orientation. What is more important for children is that they be raised in a loving, committed relationship.

    The guy’s a putz, but I do understand what he was trying to say. He just didn’t extrapolate his own argument to its logical conclusion, which would be support of same-sex marriage and partner adoption.