July 27, 2006 10:31AM

Gay Marriage Ban Will Make Gays Make Babies?

The Washington State Supreme Court has upheld that state’s ban on gay marriage based on the following brilliant bit of reasoning:

“Limiting marriage to opposite‐​sex couples furthers procreation, essential to the survival of the human race….”

And how, my good Justices, will it do that?

Will gays say: “Well, Hank, we can’t get married, so lets go find some dames and make babies”?

Or will the prohibition on gay and lesbian marriage work a Viagra‐​like spell on straight couples, causing them to reproduce with added alacrity?

Neither. Forbidding gays from getting married isn’t going to make them “just go straight all of a sudden” and start shopping at Baby Gap. Nor is it going to increase fertility among straights.

Any anyway, if the rationale for legal marriage is procreation alone, when do we start seeing the forced annulments of all those childless couples? Or the reverse of China’s one‐​child policy: “you must have at least one,” instead of “you can have at most one.”

If there is any silver lining to this decision, it is the 5 – 4 split of the justices — far closer than decisions in similar cases a generation ago. Perhaps, in another few years…