Found a couple of articles, one at the Orlando Sentinel, the other at WDBO, both so brief that the issue could hardly be of any importance. Their substance was to inform us that "Orange County leaders voted 6-0 this morning to extend health and other workplace benefits to the partners and children of gay county employees."
As a result, we get to pretend one more time that homosexual partners actually have children.
Orange County Mayor Teresa Jacobs (who got my vote in November but won't get another) said that "All people deserve to be treated compassionately. Those values of compassion, sensitivity and fairness are things we need to value."
Mayor Jacobs also said that she had to "wrestle through her own beliefs as a Roman Catholic on the sanctity of marriage." And, as invariably happens when politicians go to the mat with their faith, the Faith lost again. Just to be a pain in the ass, I'd like to ask a question: how is it compassionate to treat two homosexuals as though they were married when they're not and never can be? Isn't it cruel to encourage people to live in an unreality, and to puposely delude them? How is it "sensitive?" Or is that the same thing as compassionate? How is it "fair" to extend benefits to the partner of a homosexual employee when the two are not married, never can be, and such benefits have always been reserved to married people, that is, a man and a woman; and, furthermore, which partner had nothing to do with bringing the aforementioned children into the world, which could only have been accomplished via our employee sleeping at some point with a human female, or via some technological tinkering that made use of that female's egg? The partner had nothing to do with it. The child is not "theirs."
Am I being too picky? The questions seem to me to proceed from common sense, but common sense doesn't always pay benefits.
I know that said benefits have heretofore been reserved to married couples (that is, to repeat, a couple comprised of a man and a woman) because the WDBO article points out that "the county decided not to allow opposite-sex unwed couples to receive health insurance coverage because they have the option of getting married."
But why? Is there something disreputable about living together while not married? There must be. But then why would you extend benefits to unmarried homosexuals? If there is something morally questionable about living, and having sex, together while unmarried, isn't it still questionable whether or not one has the option to marry? If at a later time homosexuals acquire the "option to marry", will you then in hindsight admit that their previous arrangement was wrong? Or is it only wrong when the option is absent, because without that option one is, so to speak, forced to live in a state of sin, whereas with the option the sin is not sin? Sorry to sound suspicious but... is there an agenda here, some kind of subtle pressure being exerted upon the state to move it, and public sympathy, in the direction of same-sex marriage? How else to explain the urgency of extending compassion, sensitivity and fairness to homosexuals while denying it to heteros? At least the latter can "have" children, and extending benefits to them might confer a stabilizing influence on the union leading toward marriage. A real one.
Lest anyone think it's all been made too easy for the homosexual "partners" (such a vague word), it should be known that "starting January 1st, domestic partners of county employees and their dependents will be able to receive health, dental, vision, and life insurance, along with bereavement leave, if they meet certain requirements":
1. They "are in a long-term, committed relationship."
[Common sense question: how long is long-term. How committed is committed?]
2. They "live together for at least six months."
[Oh, that long.]
3. They "are jointly responsible for each other's financial welfare and basic living expenses."
[But can't heterosexual couples be also thus responsible? Sorry, I forgot. They have the option of getting married and therefore should be punished for not doing so, while the homosexuals do not have the option and therefore should be rewarded for not doing what they cannot do under Florida law and what does not even exist under God's.]