The false narrative propagated by supporters of same-sex marriage came crashing down yesterday as a couple of administrative rulings made clear that the relevant policy question is not about spreading “fairness,” but in fact is about special privileging that tears at the very fabric of fairness.
Recent federal agency actions rippled across their Louisiana counterparts, when the Internal Revenue Service declared that a married jointly filing status could be used by those legally married in a state or the District of Columbia regardless of residence, and the Department of Defense the same for National Guard benefits. Louisiana’s response was that the law would have to be changed in regards to income tax filing to unlink status because the Constitution forbids marriages that are not one man to one woman, and that it would refuse to convey such benefits to same sex couples for the identical reason.
Citizens should note that both of these federal decisions institute forms of tax increases and/or encouragements for deficit spending, although one may have a minor negative impact if at all. While individual income tax circumstances vary, in aggregate an expansion of the married jointly filing status certainly will decrease taxes taken in the immediate future, but may increase them in the future, this having to do with the vagaries of different rates at different, non-equivalent individual and family income levels between this status and filing individually.
But the benefits expansion certainly deprives the federal government of revenues it could use elsewhere, so if other spending remains unaffected this means either more deficit spending or future tax increases to make up for the loss. While Louisiana’s decision to remain faithful to its Constitution, its general police power governing this area of policy granted by the U.S. Constitution as with all states, will save both Louisiana and U.S. taxpayers from these extra costs that would have emanated from within the state’s borders, other states having or choosing to do so will foist these upon all Americans, Louisianans included.
In the granting of benefits, whether they be in the form of cash or tax breaks, best policy dictates that some useful societal purpose be served in exchange for certain parties to have the privilege of paying less than others in an otherwise similar situation, where fairness dictates that those in similar situations get treated similarly. Until now, this dictum has operated regarding marriage as an encouragement for it, because marriage often leads to producing children who typically benefit from having one man and one woman married to each other as opposed to single-parent households. And children are the most important product society makes, because without them society withers away, and the more advantaged children can be, the better off society as a whole becomes.
Thus, it makes good sense for government to subsidize marriage and thereby to encourage it by conveying inducements like cash benefits extended beyond the receiver of them on the basis of legal family size, survivorship, etc., because it wants people to marry and to produce children. Which is where the equation breaks down in regards to same-sex marriage because, try as they might, people of the same sex cannot produce children together. Unless there is that possibility between a married couple, it makes no sense to subsidize such arrangements; all that does is promotes the interest of a particular class of individuals, unfairly discriminating in its favor to the detriment of those outside of this special interest.
(A potential counterargument could go against extending the privileges of marriage to between an older man and/or older woman and to an infertile man and/or infertile woman, but fails for multiple reasons in that there is no absolute biological certainty that they cannot have children, whereas there is concerning people of the same sex, and to disallow thus could be discriminatory, yet most importantly that marriages between these individuals also provides examples of and reminders to others that the main purpose of marriage is to encourage a biological act that can produce children, something a union of same sex individuals by definition cannot do.)
Recognize then that much of the impetus – always unstated, unacknowledged, and sublimated to avoid realization of it – behind the privileging of the ability of those of the same sex to marry each other has a self-interested economic basis. In no way is it a “civil right” or an establishment
of “fairness” to allow people of the same sex to marry legally. Instead, to do so creates less fairness by allowing the transfer of wealth from some to others without a meritorious reason. Thus we see an immoral taking by a special interest with government’s assistance the property of Louisianans that even the sensible current policies of Louisiana cannot mitigate.