VB The Wise: Alabama Logic

Alabama Logic

How the Roll Tide State Plans to Outsmart Progress

Question: How much do some Alabama conservatives hate gays?

Answer: This much. There is a bill in the AL legislature as we speak that would do away with marriage in the state. Not gay marriage, marriage.

In other words, for some in Alabama, the thinking is, if you are going to force us to have gay marriage, then we'll have NO marriage. Seriously.

Specifically, the bill that has already passed the Senate would do away with marriage licenses in Alabama. "We're getting out of the marriage business" says Republican Rep. Paul Beckman. The idea would be that if a couple wants to get "married", they would first submit a form showing they have met the legal requirements to do so, and then they would record a marriage contract at the Probate office. That way the state would no longer issue marriage licenses and thus, wouldn't have to issue any gay marriage licenses.

Question: How much do some Alabama conservatives hate gays?

Answer: Enough that they'd rather have no one get married if the alternative is to allow three percent of their population to do so. It makes one wonder: if George Wallace had it to do over again, would he have just shut down all state colleges rather than have them integrated?

Let me reiterate, Alabama's gay population is roughly 3%. (al.com) That puts it in the bottom ten states in the country. (National Center For Health Statistics) Conversely, in 2015 Alabama had a divorce rate of 4 per 1,000 straight marriages, which made it the second highest rate for a state in the country. Alabama also has a 15% divorce rate for people ages 30 and under, placing it fourth in the country. (zippia.com)

Taking those last two stats into consideration, maybe Alabama should get out of the marriage business - they're clearly not very good at it.

The irony in all of this for me is that I actually think the Probate Office may be where marriages should be handled. There is an argument to be made that marriage in 2018 should be viewed first and foremost as a business arrangement. I guess that's where me and these Alabama croakers part ways -- I want "marriage" to be for 2018, they want "marriage" to return to 1618. "Roll (backwards) Tide!"

More wisdom next week.

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