Diary

Same-Sex Marriage: The For-Profit Venture

Recently several states have extended marriage rights and civil unions to include same-sex couples. Same-sex marriage is now legal in: Massachusetts, Connecticut, Iowa, and Vermont (and California, for an interim period in 2008).

Many Americans have been stunned that so many States are essentially falling in line to extend marriage rights to same-sex couples. Same-sex marriage offends the majority of Conservatives as well as the majority of those with Christian beliefs. However, few Americans realize what the true motivation is for each of these “permissive” and “progressive” States. It’s not a progressive ideology — it is dollars-and-cents.

What the mainstream media does not report to readers are the feasibility studies that show how same-sex marriage turns a profit! Same-sex feasibility studies are beginning to surface and the results show that State economies will increase through business revenues, tax revenues, fees, and job creation.

Now, more and more states are seriously reviewing the economic feasibility of extending marriage to include same-sex partners. Evidently, studies are concluding that same-sex marriages bring cash-strapped States a for-profit venture that involves very little capital investment in the process. During the financial hardships of our deep Recession, what State doesn’t look at the same-sex marriage as anything more than a for-profit venture?

But who is doing the fact-checking with those feasibility studies? And who is analyzing the methodologies and the research? Take the Williams Institute, out of UCLA School of Law, for example. The Williams Institute has published a number of recent reports that conclude the following:

  • DC: The economy would be boosted by $52.2 million over 3 years, with $5.4 million in local taxes and fees, plus 700 new jobs.
  • Vermont: The economy would be boosted by $31 million over 3 years, with 3.3 million in local tax revenues. Plus 700 new jobs.
  • Maine: The economy would be boosted by $60 million over 3 years, with $3.6 million in tax revenues. Plus 1,000 new jobs.
  • California: The economy was projected to have been boosted by $683 million over 3 years, beginning in 2008. An additional $63.8 million in tax revenues would have been collected. Plus 2,178 new jobs were projected.

There are more State feasibility studies but I grew bored with the same-ole template-based methodology extracting almost the same numbers.

(Source: http://www.law.ucla.edu/williamsinstitute/home.html)

Based upon the methodologies of the authors at the Williams Institute, their studies concluded that all states examined would have a positive financial impact, and each State would gain economic profitability. No surprise when examining the authors’ list of References which is little more than self-referenced studies they wrote using the same extrapolated figures. Can you spell B-I-A-S? Their publications are little more than the classic case of agenda-based “study” results.

The 2004 article from Forbes, The Gay-Marriage Windfall, concluded that legalizing same-sex marriage would produce a $16.8 billion windfall for the wedding industry. Of course, examining their methodology (read: statistical assumptions) produced a few laughs from me.

Regardless of the questionable methodologies for the cost-based analyses, there is a basis of truth to these studies. Marriages, in general, produce revenues — through the wedding ceremonies, the reception, the gifts, the entertainment, the honeymoon, etc. There is little doubt that weddings are a for-profit venture for any company involved. Is there any doubt that same-sex marriages would not yield for-profit results as well?

While many Conservatives and Christians view same-sex marriage with disdain, maybe disgust, and they lament over what our Nation is becoming, we have no further to look than the cost-benefit profit-sheet of every State Government in America. We have, collectively, been sold out.