Humanity's very foundation of ‘being’ is rooted with the bond between man and woman.
Archaeology shows the importance of the family unit working together as the first and most basic unit of human cooperation. There is overwhelming evidence that the unit of ‘mom, dad and children’ has been encouraged from the earliest pre-written record. The union between one man and one woman was the first and most lasting definition of marriage.
Marriage did not originate from either the state or any religion, and neither has the legitimate authority to change its nature.
Marriage may have been used for various power and control purposes at various times and by various cultures – but for the average person the basics of marriage have always been about moms, dads and children.
Confucius (551 – 479 BC) – A pre-Christian philosopher said:
“Other things may change – but we start and end with family”
“A married couple is the basic unit of the population. The very purpose of marriage is the cultivation of virtue.”
“Virtue is rooted in love between husband and wife.”
Confucius identified 5 human bonds:
Ruler – subject
Father – son
Husband – Wife
Elder – younger
Friend – Friend
Each of these bonds had specific duties and benefits. Only the bond between husband and wife included sex. Procreation through the natural acts of men and women is the unique aspect of marriage.
These 5 bonds were the very foundation of Chinese law for almost 2500 years – marriage of one man and one woman is not a new concept. In fact, it is probably the oldest concept in human history.
Alexander the Great’s - View of Marriage
Alexander the Great (356-323 BC) married a Bactrian woman – modern day Afghanistan. Alexander may have engaged in homosexual activity, but he married a woman.
He directed his officers to stop “whoring” around and find a local woman to marry.
“It is only through blood relations that hatred and war will end”. In other words, Alexander the Great thought that marriage was about creating and raising the next generation.
This is the reason for Marriage –
The creation and raising of children who have the best chance to grow to be peaceful, responsible citizens.
Aristotle – Another pre-Christian philosopher
Aristotle (384 – 322 BC) – teacher and mentor to Alexander, disagreed with Alexander’s directive to his officers. Aristotle felt strongly that ONLY Greeks had the virtues necessary to handle the freedoms Greeks had know for a century. Non-Greeks were less than fully human and the marrying of Greeks and non-Greeks would weaken the virtues of Alexander and his army. --- Notice that Aristotle thought that marriage was about men and women making babies.
Aristotle fully believed that marriage, between Greeks, was fundamental for civilization – marriage between a Greek man and a Greek woman to make virtuous Greek babies. It was only with virtuous Greek babies that Greek civilization could succeed.
Further, Aristotle wrote in his book “Ethics” (350 BC) that women must rule the family. The family trained the young and disciplined the rest so they would behave ethically in society. In modern speak – if momma ain’t happy, ain’t nobody happy.
Through out Aristotle’s writing his references to family were always about mom, dad, children and grandparents. Marriage has always been about raising children.
Indigenous peoples of the Americas
Marriage was a well established system long before any Bible totin’ Christian ever walked on this continent.
When Pocahontas married John Rolfe in April 1614, the concept of marriage was familiar to both. The story of Pocahontas and John Smith is famous but she actually married John Rolfe. This marriage was both for love and peace between the Powhatan Indians and the English at Jamestown. Notice Alexander’s concept of blood relations ending hatred.
The Navajo have a maternal clan system. Since the beginning of time Navajo’s have married from the mother’s clan for the father’s clan. Notice that this system is based on men and women making Navajo babies.
Nowhere in Native American tradition has marriage been anything but the joining of men and women. – Although some tribes did allow some leaders to have multiple wives.
Marriage is not a Christian concept
What happens if we forget our history, traditions and common sense?
What happens if we forget our underlying foundation for existence?
If we wanted to purposefully establish a culture of poverty and violence we would work to arrange for most children to be born to single teenage mothers with little or no family support. -- Oh wait, that is exactly what we have done.
Now we seem to be surprised that there is poverty and violence in our culture. Worse we spend enormous amounts of taxpayer funds to battle these phenomena.
This is why the state has a compelling interest in defining marriage. We are taking money from one set of citizens to address the problems another set created. This in itself is not a problem, but the fact that we have a real solution to the problem and we are intentionally ignoring this solution is a problem. Marriage as the union of one man and one women is the solution.
Do we have the right to define our culture?
In 1912 with the entrance of New Mexico as a full and equal partner in the Union we addressed the issue of how to define our culture. We intentionally put into our states constitution a ban on polygamy (Article XXI, Sec 1).
The founders felt strongly that defining culture was their duty. They insisted that we have a way to amend our constitution. They insisted on proportionate representation so the voice of the people could be heard. The 10th Amendment to the constitution states: “The powers not delegated to the United States by the Constitution, nor prohibited by it to the states, are reserved to the states respectively, or to the people”. Clearly meaning, that we have the right to define our culture.
With all that said:
I know that many single mom’s raise great kids who are “virtuous” and good citizens, but they are by far the exception.
There are many “walking wounded” who have been lead down the primerose path and now suffer from the effects of allowing our culture to wonder aimlessly over the abyss.
For those we should: Stop this cultural slide
Help them recover
Set the foundation of family
Work to pass laws that strengthen families
Develop social systems to support families
Allow for the differences between men and women
Marriage is important because it is the foundation of the family, the family of society. Marriage is a personal relationship with massive public significance.
Sex between a man and a woman produces babies – society needs babies – babies need both moms and dads
As marriage goes, so go the children, so goes the nation, so goes the world.
This is a simple foundational move. Defining marriage as virtually everyone on every continent and in every culture has always defined it.
Marriage in New Mexico is between one man and one woman, period.