Wednesday, October 1, 2008

Gays and Libertarians

In an earlier post, I made the following comment:

Libertarians are being used by the gay community to advocate non libertarian policies.

In the comments, Blue Devil Knight asked a very good question:

How is wanting gov't not to block gays from marrying against liberetarian principles. One of the key principles, from my limited understanding, is that the government's involvement in our economic and personal lives should be minimized. Since gays getting married doesn't hurt anybody, and opposition to it is typically motivated by religious arguments, and marriage is now a secular (state-sponsored) institution, why should libertarians not be against such marriage bans?
My response is complicated, so I wanted to make a whole new post out of my response. Rather than answering the question directly, I am going to answer it indirectly by providing what I feel the philosophical position of gay libertarians should be.

Gay libertarians should believe the following:

  • Individuals should be free to make their own choices in life.
  • Any law that restricts an individuals ability to freely make their own choices is immoral.
  • Individuals who are gay should be free to make their own choices in life without any restriction from the government (just as long as those choices are between 2 or more consenting adults).
  • Freedom should apply to all individuals no matter how repugnant some might find their choices to be (just as long as those choices are not violating other people's rights).
  • If an individual chooses not to rent or sell his home to a gay individual, that individual should be free to do so without having laws criminalizing the behavior.
  • If an individual chooses to fire or not hire an individual due to the person's sexual orientation, that individual should be free to do so.
  • Marriage is essentially a contract of devotion between 2 (or more) individuals. The state should have no interest in such a contract except when to find an amicable dissolution of such a contract. A civil union, as some have suggested as an alternative for gay marriage, should be more than acceptable solution for such a contract. People who are not the party to the contract should be free to accept the terms of the contract at their own discretion without laws mandating their consent, and in some cases, mandating extra benefits (i.e., company provided health insurance, hospital visitation rights). Taxpayers should not be forced to provide extra benefits to individuals who enter into such a contract, and if they are forced to do so, they should have a say in it through their elected representatives rather than having a ruling imposed upon them through judicial fiat.
  • The state should not finance public schools. If the state is going to finance public schools, parents should have as much freedom as possible in choosing the schools that best meet the needs of their children. The reason that is important is because some parents are being forced to pay for public schools through taxes, but then told if they want the benefit of public schools they must send their children to schools that specifically attempt to indoctrinate the children with the belief that the parents religious beliefs on creationism, sexual abstinence and gays is wrong. That has to be the single most offensive form of state coercion that exists today in America, and might very well violate the Separation of Church and State.
  • The state should not finance public libraries. If the state is going to finance public libraries, the libraries belong to the citizens. As such, the citizens should have the right to decide, through their elected officials, the content for the library without being accused of censorship if they deem some material inappropriate. Anyone who objects, should take it upon themselves to buy the book or books in question without bemoaning censorship.

As far as I am aware, no gay libertarians are espousing the positions that I just presented. Until gay libertarians start promoting these views or convince me why I am an idiot for believing such, I am going to feel gays are using libertarians to promote non libertarian policies.