"(1)Identify the precise legal and economic benefits to married couples that are not extended to same-sex couples."
with Act 5, Session Laws of Hawaii 1995:
"(1)Identify the major legal and economic benefits to married couples that are not extended to same-sex couples."
"The Commission further finds that beyond the specific intangible benefits listed above is one other that stands head and shoulders above all the other benefits combined. That is the intangible benefit of liberty and equality. What price, what cost, is it to lose equality?
We cheapen the discussion by reducing legal marriage to only a matter of dollars and cents. Certainly the majority of those married couples who are allowed to receive governmental certificates do not view these documents as passports to economic prosperity. We should step back and look at the bigger picture.
What, for example, was the cost in human liberty to be forced to attend segregated schools before Brown v. Board of Education 347 U.S.483 (1954)? What was the cost in terms of human equality for different-gender couples to go to jail for marrying the one they loved, before Loving v. Virginia, 388 U.S. 1 (1966)?
Add up the hundreds of special marriage-certificate benefits. Now subtract their purely economic value. What you have left is the greatest intangible benefit of all: simple recognition and equality. And the Commission finds that this value is priceless and is above and beyond the other values, intangible or otherwise, simply because the value of legal marriage is greater than the sum of its parts.
Indeed, the Commission finds that this intangible idea of "being
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