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Salt Lake City Picks a Name

Timothy Kincaid

March 25th, 2008

We told you earlier that Utah legislators decided that Salt Lake City could not use the term “Domestic Partnership” on its couples registry. They’ve now picked a name: Mutual Commitment Registry.

In order to qualify for the registry, individuals must be in a committed relationship and responsible for each other’s welfare. In addition, registrants must demonstrate financial interdependence, be over 18 years old, competent to contract and share a primary residence in Salt Lake City.

So now when you travel across the nation on vacation, depending where you spend the night you might be married, civilly unioned, domestically partnered, mutually committed, or legal strangers. So travel safely, pack your documents, plan your route carefully, and make sure you don’t need hospital services in a hate state.

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Regan DuCasse
March 25th, 2008 | LINK

Talk about weakening marriage and it’s vows and concepts. All in order to keep gay people from entering the institution, and at the same time leaving it all open for heterosexuals who are too shy to go for the whole pinata.

If they tried to make this option exclusive to gay people, it would point out how glaringly unConstitutional it is to ban marriage for gay couples and at the same time, the straight people might sue against the law saying it’s not fair for them to not have a ‘marriage lite’, .
Taken altogther, the straight folks making these laws are gumming it up for everybody.

cooner
March 25th, 2008 | LINK

Just wondering, but do heterosexual couples anywhere who want to get married have to “demonstrate financial interdependence?” Or even, for that matter, prove that they share a primary residence? (I’m not sure about that last one.)

Wonderful, you have to do a whole lot more work to get a whole lot less.

Bruce Garrett
March 26th, 2008 | LINK

I’ve been thinking for years now that the only reason I can still freely travel across the country is because I’m still single.

cowboy
March 26th, 2008 | LINK

It has been my experience with several friends, the hospitals in Salt Lake City that I have visited have afforded us all the graciousness and professionalism any health-care facility should…even going out of their way to personally assist us during stressful medical emergencies. Sometimes simple human decency dictates people act more humanly towards one another rather than rigidly following the dictates of any dogmatic laws. So, I wouldn’t fear being hospitalized in Salt Lake City.

I view this “compromised” verbiage is a step in the right direction and eventually the folly of certain Representatives in our Legislature will be dealt with in this coming November.

Timothy Kincaid
March 26th, 2008 | LINK

cowboy,

I’m not surprised at your experience.

OK, I’m going to display total ignorance here and undoubtedly offend someone – for which I ask forgiveness in advance. But my observations about Mormons and gay issues are that there is a war of basic values going on within the members of the church.

It appears to me that a very important part of being Mormon is being a good citizen, family member, and neighbor. It seems that Mormons hold dear the notion that one must treat others kindly.

But they also have doctrinal issues surrounding notions of marriage that transcend earthy recognition.

This may explain some Mormon legislators (Sen. Gordon Smith, R-Oregon, for example) that are strong supporters of the gay community and in treating gay people decently but balk at recognizing marriage or anything that looks too much like it.

I suspect that in time, if approached correctly, the community could get the LDS Church to be supportive on some non-discrimination issues such as military service and hate crimes out of their drive to be good neighbors and treat people decently. But maybe I’m a dreamer.

Regan DuCasse
March 27th, 2008 | LINK

Great question cooner!
As a matter of fact, to get a marriage license, all you have to do is swear you are not currently married, are of consenting age and not closely related. You have to show picture I.D. to prove you are who you are and a birth certificate.
You still have to submit to a blood test, and if you don’t want to, agree to a confidential marriage license that will take a court order to unseal.
Then you have thirty days from applying for the marriage license to have your ceremony and the license signed by the authority to do so and they have it notarized.

The only time you have to prove your living and financial arrangements as what you do with a DP, is if you are buying property together or adopting children. Or if you are not an American citizen, prove your relationship and the ability to sponsor the foreigner for legal residency and citizenship.
Of course marriage expedites ALL of the above, that a DP basically doesn’t cover at all.
DP’s and CU’s make a mess of family and marriage laws. Marriage doesn’t.

Yes, in fact, you DO have to work a lot harder to get a lot LESS.

cowboy
March 27th, 2008 | LINK

First, I have to say there is a difference in how Utah Mormons behave towards gays as contrasted by those Mormons living in California or Oregon. There is a palpable difference. It may be due to the living in a culture where the dominant religion in a region is so powerful they wield their way over others…in a theocratic way…as opposed to Mormons in the minority living in bigger metropolitan areas.

There is now even a difference in Salt Lake Valley Mormons as opposed to the more rural cities…like Kanab where the city mayor and council made national news about the “natural family ordinance” they enacted.

It was once herding the neighbor’s children inside if I was cutting the lawn shirtless. When their young priesthood deacons come around to collect fast-offerings, they would have an adult with them but only at my house. The attitude of some of my Mormon neighbors is still a bit condescending and I suppose I am still the boogie man on the cul-de-sac.

What is strikingly palpable, for me recently, is how more of my Mormon neighbors are relating with me. From what I understand there is an edict from some pronouncement from their conferences and an article in their publications about how to handle their gay brothers and sisters (brethren).

I once entered a Mormon Ward House at the invitation of my one good neighbor’s son to attend his Mission-Farewell program. I was expecting people to stand at least outside a 10-foot imaginary circle around me but, actually, I temporarily lost feeling in my hand and wrist from all the handshaking! Plus, there were none of the mass murmurings that started at the back of the Chapel and slowly made it to the front when I walked in. And then there was a special moment during Christmas holidays where three smartly dressed men invited me to attend Church and gave me a holiday greeting card.

The rift between Mormons and gays is not going away that fast. But the attitude has changed. The biggest change was the LDS General Authorities’ acknowledgment last year that gays are struggling with something they underestimated. That’s a big step in our negotiations in the war with gays and Mormons.

A Stitch in Haste
March 28th, 2008 | LINK

Questions…

–Who called on the Secretary of Defense to give a speech every year on the state of our schools?

–…

Jay
April 27th, 2011 | LINK

I think the government should get out of licensing marriage altogether and simply recognize private contractual agreements among couples and give them all the rights and responsibilities that marriage currently enjoys. This idea is popular in libertarian circles and is called the privatization of marriage. People could just create their own ‘Mutual Commitment Agreements”. They would have the option to register their agreement and/or affidavit, but their agreement would be legally binding whether they registered or kept a private written agreement.

Priya Lynn
April 27th, 2011 | LINK

Jay, that idea may be popular in libertarian circles but there’s no way a significant minority let alone a majority is ever going to agree to go that route.

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