Slippery slope arguments about marriage are abounding in the conservasphere. Gay marriage, we are told, will lead to marriages of more than two people*, of close blood relatives, and even of turtles and inflatable dolls**.
Clearly, we need to discuss what marriage really is before we rush headlong down the demagogue’s slippery slope. In the interests of this conversation, I’d like to refer to a triplet of posts on marriage that I wrote in December last year:
In part 3, I try to outline some of the reasons that governments have for conferring benefits on marriages. I think it is clear that marriages involving turtles and inflatable dolls would not meet these criteria.
Furthermore, government cannot legally dictate to churches what types of religious marriage they should perform. So, if it gives believers any consolation, they can rest assured that their pastors and priests have the final word on the religious aspects of marriage.
* Christians might need to check their Bibles before objecting to polygamy, though. Many examples of this practice are listed there.
** Speaking of inflatable dolls, I cannot help recommending a Tim Minchin song on this topic.