Why libertarians should be opposed to same-sex marriage

During a discussion on same-sex marriage with one of my more liberal friends, I mentioned not wanting the state to encourage self-destructive behavior like homosexuality. My friend asked why I, a libertarian, would want the government to interfere in people’s lives.

Unfortunately this is actually a common libertarian position. So in an attempt to persuade my fellow libertraians, let me outline why I believe all libertarians ought to be opposed to same-sex marriage.

Libertarians believe in limited government. Same sex marriage greatly expands the role of government in peoples’ lives. Ergo, I am opposed to same-sex marriage because it would necessarily entail an expansion of the government just like it has in every country that has embraced same-sex marriage.

Here’s a great article about the effects of normalizing aberrant sexual practices weakens the institution of marriage.

Weakening marriage means the state needs to grow to take on the roles the parents once filled. Today that means the state becomes the husband (provider/protector/teacher) in the lives of millions of single-parent homes (which are predominantly female).

When we make sex out to be a private pleasure divorced from any public good (like the production and care and raising of children) then we end up with fewer children (because they are seen as a nuisance) and fewer marriages which provide the most stable environment for the raising of children.

And you know what’s great about properly functioning marriages? The state doesn’t need to interfere with them, so it doesn’t need to grow in order to provide anyone with an imagined “right”.

The family is the fundamental building block of society. And for that reason, all libertarians should be opposed to the legalization of same-sex marriage.

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41 responses to “Why libertarians should be opposed to same-sex marriage

  1. Sorry but your ideas don't jive. There's a lot of circular logic without any supporting evidence. For instance, children aren't a good unless you sell them which I don't think you are so I think it's safe to assume they aren't a good. It really sounds like you're trying to come up for reasons about something you believe in rather than recognizing the possibility of the lack there of. Anyway, Cheers.

  2. Everyone else tried to reason with you so I'm just going to call you an asshole. Because you're an asshole.

  3. Well then, using your reasoning we should make owning pets illegal because so many people abandon their pets and the local humane societies must pick them up and either find homes for them or put them down. Wait, there's a solution: just have the unwanted, abandoned children put down. Problem solved!

  4. The Weekly Standard is not a credible source. You are correct that traditions like marriage are on the decline, but you assertion that marriage prevents the interference of the state is nonsense. A man and a woman can't build their own roads, lay their own sewer pipes, etc. To function independently, humans need to live in larger groups like tribes or villages, but that's completely irrelevant to the issue.

    You need more empathy for people different than you, like people who are not Christians, not religious, not straight, etc. The typical libertarian American Christian worldview has only existed for a few decades and at most a couple of centuries, depending on your definition. Gay people and atheists existed long before Jesus is alleged to have lived.

  5. You need to look up libertarian in the dictionary; what you are talking about is fundamentalist conservatism

  6. I'm pretty sure there were dudes living in B.C.

  7. Your position is poorly supported at best. Also, it seems like you're basing your argument on premises that may not be shared by the audience.

    "Ergo, I am opposed to same-sex marriage because it would necessarily entail an expansion of the government just like it has in every country that has embraced same-sex marriage."

    You haven't supported this at all. The article you site is poorly supported at best, and is written by someone with a clearly biased political bent. This can't be treated as evidence. (There's another problem here with will be addressed below.)

    "Weakening marriage means the state needs to grow to take on the roles the parents once filled. Today that means the state becomes the husband (provider/protector/teacher) in the lives of millions of single-parent homes (which are predominantly female)."

    I'm going to ignore the fact that this seems sexist. How does same-sex marriage invalidate heterosexual marriage, exactly?

    "When we make sex out to be a private pleasure divorced from any public good (like the production and care and raising of children) then we end up with fewer children (because they are seen as a nuisance) and fewer marriages which provide the most stable environment for the raising of children."

    Without explaining how homosexual marriage weakens the institution of marriage, this is pretty big logical jump. If anything, wouldn't allowing people who have been fighting for years to BE married would strengthen the institution by including ardent defenders who have fought for years for that right?

    I'm sorry to say this, but your post reads like someone that's trying to support their prejudices by blindly applying the rules of a political philosophy. Please prove me wrong.

  8. "So gay marriage, because it does not explicitly produce new children within the marriage, is bad?"

    From a policy perspective it may not be bad, but it is certainly not good. And if you factor in the health issues homosexuals face (I have a post on this subject coming out Friday) I would argue that the least the state should be doing is accurately informing its citizens about the choices they are making. At the least the government should not be actively promoting a lifestyle that has been shown to be detrimental not only to the institution of marriage (see post above) but also detrimental to children (by virtue of the damage it does to marriage and by virtue of the nature of homosexuality's denial of biological design) and homosexuality is ultimately detrimental to homosexuals themselves (ie. studies show that homosexuals live and average of 20 years less than heterosexuals).

    As for government intervention and limited government. The ideal situation is the natural family which has been statistically shown to benefit all members and draw far fewer public resources than all alternatives. I'm not sure why you think the government's exaltation of the only human institution capable of producing and caring for new citizens in an autonomous fashion is a bad thing or "overstepping" in any sense.

    "Finally, you seem to ignore the fact that larger population != "better" in every sense of the word. Sure, it might mean more capital, but at the same time likely means less capital per capita and lower per capita income."

    It seems to me that you are confusing Karl Marx's assertions with established facts. The truth is that in industrialized nations the average wages have continued to rise along with the overall size of the population. Without establishing overpopulation as a fact (which I would argue is a man-made myth), there is no reason to conclude that the addition of renewable resources is a problem that needs to be "solved".

    "At any rate, trying to force people into heterosexual marriage won't work. "

    That's not the issue so I'll take this to be a cheap parting shot. The real issue is what ideal we are going to endorse and promote as a society. And as far as I can tell the ideal institution, backed by a plethora of studies, is traditional marriage.

  9. This post is about the secular case against gay marriage so I'm not even sure why you've decided to bring the Bible into this discussion at all unless you also think we should base our laws off of the precepts found in Scripture. Is that what you are advocating?

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