Saturday, July 9, 2011

Bobbi Ann Finley and "The Case for Marriage"

Yesterday evening as I was flipping through the channels on TV - out of sheer boredom - I paused my clicking finger just in time to catch an episode of 6o Minutes.  It involved a devious and possibly sociopathic con-woman by the name of Bobbi Ann Finley.  According to the reports she left the lives of fourteen men devastated in her wake: In an effort to confuse authorities, as well as her various beaus, she quickly married each one in a different county (marriages that often over-lapped each other before any divorces were finalized, let alone broached) in an effort to defraud not only her husbands, but the United States government. You see, her husbands were all employees of the military which, if one enters into a civil marriage contract, the government not only gives each married serviceman an extra $1000 in his pay check to help support his spouse (and any children that may or may not issue from that union), as well as a much nicer military-grade home in which to live.  However, within days of each marriage, Bobbi Ann would run-off with each husband's possessions, leaving their homes in a shambles (with holes in the walls and graffiti).  In fact, according to an interview, she claims never to have even loved any of her husbands.  She has even sired a total of nine children with several of her former husband, but she has not kept any of them; shortly after each child was born she gave it to a friend or a family member to raise.  Until recently, most of her husbands had no idea that they were fathers, and this knowledge is only compounded by the frustration that - legally - law enforcement agencies have said there is almost no authority to absolve the situation in terms of granting them custody while the children's mother in in prison; after all, Bobbi Ann refuses to tell these men which child is their's, or where they are located.

But, why is this account important?  Because of anti-Gay protesters such as Peggy Staley (pictured) of Charter Oak, IA. who held the following sign in a demoralizing anti-Gay protest in Des Moines, on the steps of the capital on 13 April, 2009, only 4 short days after the Iowa Supreme Court's ruling insisting on Marriage Equality as defined by our Constitution's Equal Protection Claus - the most strict clause in the Nation!

Sadly, Peggy appears to have been emotionally coerced into conforming with Maggie Gallagher-Srivistav's notion of hetero-hegemony when we note that her sign illicits a variance of these identical NOM-approved talking points in which Peggy's ideology appears to be rooted:
Marriage has its own dignity and purpose and its own mission: bringing together male and female so that children can know and be known by, loved and be loved by, their own mother and father.  Same-sex marriage is unjust because it is founded on an untruth.  Same-sex unions are not marriages...  Same-sex marriage is profoundly unjust because it misuses the law to require something that is not true: these unions, however great they are in other ways, are not marriages and nobody by law should be required to treat them as marriages.
But, what about Bobbi Ann's children and the fathers that she has defrauded from being able to "know" and "love" their own biological children?  How did "marriage" as a legal and societal institution protect these children's alleged "rights" - a "right" that is mentioned in no Civil Marriage vows!?  This case also further illustrates the anti-Gay financial disparity in the federal laws which Gallagher-Srivistav whole heartily endorses: Committed - or even legally married - Gay couples are treated like strangers, or (more offensively) like mere roommates, under the law in accordance to the country that we, as free born citizens, pay our taxes to.  Dan Johnson of West Des Moines, IA. put it well when he expressed that religious fervor and anti-Gay animus is the only principle animating any opposition against Civil Marriage rights for Gay couples.  And, that having been said, I leave you with this succinct message...

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