Should Adultery Be Illegal?
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Wait explain this again
There is no crime that persists after the act. If the act is not witnessed by any person besides those involved then it doesn't make sense to prosecute a person on the sole testimony of one witness for a crime that leaves no permanent scars.
In addition, there is still the matter of deciding whether any person engaged in the act that is not wed to another would be guilty of the same crime.
Teenage Mary is impregnated by a sky fairy. Marries local carpenter. Christians spend centuries trying to control peoples sex lives. Too funny.
A good question, breezy man. Perhaps a better one would be - why do we need marriage at all? Surely, the important things are compatibility, love, satisfaction and happiness. You don't get those from a piece of paper and a religious ceremony or a civil one. Isn't there a better way we could do it?
Well I agree, I've always seen marriage as a religious institution, like baptism. I see no point in marriage if you're not religious, other than the trivial fact that it has been adopted by society at large.
Well, there's also the trivial facts about ownership of property, inheritance rights, and responsibility for children. But I'm sure there are answers to all of those things that don't necessarily require a binding, lifetime contract.
I actually agree with John here, sort of.
While it is in general, it is religion's fault, implementing their rules and culture into governments/states at large, I actually feel the religious marriage and the "civil" state recognized joining of two persons should be wholly separate. It would probably help a lot of people if they had to seperate names. Since any one religion does not own the word "marriage." That can be the state/government term for the union of two people in finances and matters of law. Then religions can adopt their own name for that particular religions paring of people ritual. Call it "binding in holy matrimony" or something like that. It holds no legal/civil weight. But religious people do not need that. Most of them have this "before god" verbiage in there. After their particular religious ceremony that go out and fill out a marriage certificate, just like they do now in almost every state/country today.
That way, I think people on both sides can agree to things like:
Church "X" religious union procedure called "Y" can have whatever rules they want. Do not want homosexual "bindings of holy matrimony?" that is fine. Your private religion, your rules. Do not want polygamous "bindings of holy matrimony?" Noooo problem! your particular religious binding ritual, you make the rules, since it has no actual legal ramifications, it is the same as the tony the tiger cult making a rule that in order to be called a junior tiger member you must paint an orange stripe on your arm for every tony the tiger cult meeting.
Of course, if your particular religion gets tax breaks or public funding dollars, suddenly your religion is not private anymore, and is supported in part by the general public tax dollars, you give up the right to make "private religion" rules.
What is missed by the OP and everyone else on this thread is the definition of adultery. It is a civil law term, based on marriage. Marriage is a civil contract having to do with property. Adultery is a violation of that contract. Not in the sense that a person is the property of the other, but in the sense of honesty versus betrayal.
I'm a proponent of free love between consenting adults and that marriage should be illegal. Hence, the issue of adultery is moot.
Indonesia is about to make adultery illegal with jail terms of up to five years. I'm sure none of the politicians who'll vote for this change have mistresses/toy boys.
Adultery is a many colored beast. If one partner in a legally betrothed contractual arrangement commits adultery it's only because his legal partner sees it that way. If the partner does not see it that way then it's not adultery. If both partners have mutually consensual extra-marital affairs then adultery remains undescribed.
In the conventional sense of adultery where one partner can be accused of it, then making it illegal isn't going to make it any more than it is already. The conventions these days where grounds for divorce and settlement favor the injured partner need no further bolstering by adding adultery to the burgeoning police-state of man and his dwindling freedoms.
I feel like people are exaggerating what I meant by illegal. No one is talking about the death penalty or 50+ years in prison. I'm thinking in terms of a misdemeanor, like littering, something realistic.
It also seems irrelevant to not want to "burden" the police with extra work, since you can use that argument for practically anything you don't want to be enforced.
Its also irrelevant whether or not you know how to prove someone did cheat.
Well like I mentioned in an earlier post. If all there is, is a lightly enforced misdemeanor with say a few hundred dollar fine (or less!), I think it would deter very few people to stop committing adultery.
Your original question was "should adultery be illegal."
Well the correct answer is, in most states it already is. It just typically very lightly enforced. Back to the jaywalking example, I would say nearly everyone at some point in their lives jay walked across a street, it just so rarely enforced, it is barely a law, barely illegal defanged by light penalty and even weaker enforcement.
Another example: marijuana is illegal by federal law. But if you go to places like Colorado or Washington State, and check into a reasonably priced hotel, near a major airport or highway, I can almost guarantee you, (based upon my own experience,) you are going to smell pot. Marijuana is illegal by federal law, but no one cares, because it is not enforced. The term "illegal" is almost meaningless.
Adultery is already illegal in most states but it still occurs all the time.
Also, be reminded that in some parts of the world, adultery does come with very steep repercussions, like many years in jail or death.
I am not to worried about the burden of police, if no one expects a step up in the enforcement of the law. But I am very concerned if they were to step up enforcement on the burden to police, courts, jails etc, aka the entire already badly overburdened criminal/civil justice system.
If you are okay with the idea that adultery is illegal, but that the fact it is illegal is "irrelevant" then yes, it is also irrelevant if someone can prove cheating/adultery or not.
But if the already in the books laws of adultery being illegal was actually to mean something, then yes, being able to prove in the court of law cheating does become very important.
Marriage is a socio-cultural construct that evolves with the species.
In the beginning: polamorous - YAY!
Then: polygamous - YAy.
Finally: monogamous - Yay
Now: recreation - HURRAY!