Civil Union or Marriage? N.J. Again.

Law has always been a distinction between words. The English language is replete with words that sound the same, are spelled the same, but woe for you if English is not your native language.

So is civil union truly the same as marriage? If it is, why is NJ having such an issue and giving the lawmakers six months to find the proper words?

A civil union is a legal partnership agreement between two persons. They are typically created for same-sex couples with the purpose of granting them some benefits that are found in marriage. Civil unions were made to try to appease same sex couples. They are given very limited advantages compared to married couples. The amount of advantages vary within the state but their rights aren’t nearly equivalent to married couples. Some jurisdictions, however, also allow entry by opposite-sex couples. Unions that are similar to or synonymous with civil unions include civil partnerships, registered partnerships , and domestic partnerships. Some jurisdictions, such as the United Kingdom, have unions that on the paper are similar to marriage, while some only allow minimal reciprocal benefits. Many people are critical of civil unions because they say it creates a separate status that’s unequal to marriage. Others are critical because they say it is introducing same-sex marriage by using a different name.

A marriage is a relationship between or among individuals, usually recognized by civil authority and/or bound by the religious beliefs of the participants. The fact that marriage often has the dual nature of a binding legal contract plus a moral promise can make it difficult to characterize.

A married couple can be called each other’s spouses, and spousal is used as a legal term for the marital relation. A royal married couple are consorts.

In one form or another, marriage is found in virtually every society. The very oldest records that refer to it speak of it as an established custom. Despite attempts by anthropologists to trace its origin (and test the hypothesis of primitive promiscuity), evidence is lacking.

In Western societies, marriage has traditionally been understood as a monogamous union, while in other parts of the world polygamy has been a common form of marriage. Usually this has taken the form of polygyny (a man having several wives) but a very few societies have permitted polyandry (a woman having several husbands). [1]


The question remains: separate but equal? And is there equality if there is a separate “class”?


5 responses to “Civil Union or Marriage? N.J. Again.

  1. Polyandry! Are you serious – it actually exists somewhere on this planet. OMG, please tell me where this place is … hmm … I mean, I’m just curious, I don’t actually want to go there.

    Really, how does a society like that work? Do all the men have some abnormally low level of testosterone or have the women there convince their first husbands that all the other men sniffing around the house are just “friends”?

  2. I don’t understand the uproar either. Why the debate?
    If a couple want to engage in a committed relationship, then why shouldn’t they enjoy of all the same benefits?

  3. Agree. Hence my confusion and continuing interest in this issue. Does anyone have the stats on how many of those people deciding against the use of the word marriage may be divorced? gay themselves? what reasons could there possibly be?

  4. Seriously, it is appalling the amount of attention and money this country devotes to this one issue which is essentially about two consenting adults wanting to be treated evenhandedly in all areas of the law. It makes as much sense as having a differnet name for unions of couple of different races. Stupid.

  5. Well said! That is the point we are expressing also!
    Is there something wrong with us? Something we fail to see? If two people, regardless of class, sexual preference, gender preference, culture, national origin, etc. choose to commit to one another, take care of another and want the same ability to use the word marriage, not just for legal reasons, but also within society, um, well, who are we to object? and why? We have either not heard or refuse to listen to any alleged compelling reasons.

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