What makes this a ‘taoist’ idea?
Ideally, all governmental actions should be impartial, shouldn’t they? As chapter 79 reminds us, It is the way of heaven to show no favoritism. Rather than seeking impartiality, politicians choose sides and argue the ‘pros’ and ‘cons’. I guess heaven is heaven and earth is earth, and never the twain shall meet. Yet, we can hope.
Here’s the idea:
Instead of having gay marriage sanctioned or prohibited by the government, we could have marriage, gay or otherwise, removed from the government’s domain. Instead, government would simply offer equal protection under the law to everyone through something like a ‘long-term partnership contract’.
Such partnership contracts would still have restrictions agreed to be in the common best interest of society. That would preclude “partnership contracts” between siblings, animals, etc. At one time homosexuals would have been barred from such contracts. However, times have changed and there is now majority support in our culture to permit such civil unions.
Most of the objections I hear, from both sides of the gay marriage debate, seem to center around defining the gay relationship as marriage. Removing government’s role of what to call the “partnership contract” would remove government’s role in sanctioning marriage, period.
Marriage has been a spiritual, if not religious, practice for consecrating a life long bond between people. Traditionally, this bond has been between people of opposite gender. It still could be, depending upon the religious ‘tribe’ holding the ceremony. For example, Catholics can continue to recognize marriage between heterosexuals only, while Unitarians can view marriage as the union of two people of any gender.
Just as each religion defines God (or whatever higher power) according to its traditions, each religion could also define what marriage means for its followers.
Getting the government out of the business of defining what qualifies as ‘true love‘ or ‘true marriage‘ is no different than getting the state out of the business of defining what qualifies as the ‘true God‘, ‘true path‘, or ‘true religion‘.