With the 2012 election behind us, the monumental legislation for gay (and other people in the non-heterosexual spectrum) marriage soon will be enacted into law. In my home state of Washington, where marriage equality was affirmed by residents, December 6 is the first day non-heterosexuals are able to apply for a marriage license. As much as i love gay marriage, I never truly realized much of a a pain it is truly to get married. I was filled with visions of marriage that resembled the overpriced and elegant, yet tacky weddings seen on MTV. This article however highlights how dramatic social change can actually be stressful for partners who already are in civil unions.
The wedding without the legal stuff
I think as a young voter and political enthusiast, I have failed to realize (more like accept) that change comes really pretty slow. I expect that my vote, if it goes with the majority, instantly will be acted into law directly after election day. Sadly this is not the case. Stuff like radical change does not simply happen overnight in a wave of ballots. In regards to the marriage initiatives across the country many as asking what they do next. They won, but how does that affect those who already are engaged in a civil union? What do these new rights do to people who already are in legally recognized partnerships? According to Jamie Pedersen, the state representative from Seattle’s 43rd District,
“If you have a registered domestic partnership in Washington, then you have three choices,” Pedersen says. “(A) Get married. You can do this anytime after December 6, just like any other couple. (B) Dissolve your domestic partnership, which requires going to court, just like dissolution of a marriage. (C) Do nothing, which would mean that on June 30, 2014, your domestic partnership will automatically convert into a marriage. The date of your marriage would be considered the date of your original domestic partnership registration.”
Reading this at first made my head spin, I was so confused on why how the state could make your partnership evolve into a marriage. As much as I like the idea, I don’t think all domestic partnerships need to be converted by a certain date. Maybe people don’t really want to be in a marriage, but have found a life partner they want to spend time with. On some levels, I feel as forcing someone into a certain typeof relationship is odd, even for such a progressive bill. I guess when it comes down to it, even progressive bills can’t always be perfect.