Gay Divorce Proving Complicated

By Alan Stewart Carl | Related entries in Law, Massachusetts, Sexuality

Gay couples who married in Massachusetts but live in other states are having trouble getting divorced. It seems, early on, Massachusetts allowed out-of-state couples to get married there but currently does not allow gay divorces unless the couple establishes a year of residency in the state. Since other states do not permit gay marriages, they don’t offer divorces either.

Interestingly, while the concept of marriage is intertwined in religious traditions, the concept of divorce is a much more secular construct. I’m sure some states would completely reject the notion of allowing gay divorces on the principle that granting divorces is too close to recognizing gay marriage. However, if two consenting adults want to separate their belongings and obligations, who cares what gender they are? There is arguably a greater public interest in the state allowing for legal gay separation than legal gay union. A couple who cannot legally separate will either burden the legal system or resort to less legal solutions – both of which are less desirable than simply letting them go their separate ways.

Conceivably, we could be closer to widespread legalized gay divorce than we are to widespread legalized gay marriage. I’d prefer to keep the discussion on the legalization of gay marriage but I guess those of us who support such changes must also accept the necessary evil of gay divorce.

And yes, I do support gay marriage. You may now revoke my rightwing echo chamber credentials.


This entry was posted on Tuesday, April 15th, 2008 and is filed under Law, Massachusetts, Sexuality. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed. You can leave a response, or trackback from your own site.

8 Responses to “Gay Divorce Proving Complicated”

  1. mw Says:

    “A couple who cannot legally separate will either burden the legal system or resort to less legal solutions… – ASC

    Perhaps we should consider restoring the old tradition of Dueling as a quick way resolve these kinds of issues without burdening the legal system. 10 paces, one shot, winner takes all. If it works out well in the gay community, we can broaden its use for divorces in the straight community as well. I believe this would do much to decrease the divorce rate among both straights and gays and strengthen the sanctity of marriage in this country..

  2. Avinash_Tyagi Says:

    No I think it would just up the number of homicides in this country

  3. mw Says:

    Avinash, A small price to pay when you consider the benefits of a lower divorce rate and stronger family values.

  4. Charlotte Says:

    Are you stating that heterosexuals marriages do not sometimes end in divorce?
    Marriage is a basic civil right that should be attainable by all Americans if they choose. For the truth about gay marriage check out our trailer. Produced to educate & defuse the controversy it has a way of opening closed minds & provides some sanity on the issue: http://www.OUTTAKEonline.com

  5. mw Says:

    Charlotte, Are you talking to me?

  6. Rob Says:

    No I think it’s a canned advertisement.

  7. mw Says:

    So I wasted my best DeNiro impression.

  8. TerenceC Says:

    People get married for lot’s of reasons – and they get divorced for lot’s of reasons too. Marriage means many thing’s to people but legally it is a joining property and personal responsibilities. Anyone who has ever gotten a divorce can tell you the legal proceedings couldn’t care less about who was hurt etc…..they care about a fair and equitable distribution of joint assets – that’s it – that’s all it means. Religious influences don’t matter when it comes to a legal divorce – churches/religions do not over-rule the law. Gay or straight shouldn’t matter – if a gay person wants to marry – by all means go for it. Sexual preference shouldn’t be a cloak for protection from wanting to chew your arm off some days. They should be allowed the frustration, aggrivation, and monotony just like the rest of us…..just kidding honey.

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