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National Review Online  has posted an interview on  What is Marriage? Man and Woman: A Defense  that I gave to Zachary Young, a reporter for the Yale Politic .

Here’s a bit:

Our argument can explain and justify at the level of principle (and not merely as a matter of subjective preference or sentimental attachment) key features of marriage that cannot be explained or justified at that level by advocates of the revisionist view: (1) Why marriage is inherently a sexual partnership, and not a partnership integrated around other (nonsexual) shared interests or activities (reading novels, playing tennis, watching films, etc.). (2) Why marriage is the union of two persons, not three or more (“throuples” or “triads,” “quadrads,” etc.) in polyamorous sexual ensembles. (3) Why marriage is a sexually closed relationship, not an “open” relationship in which spouses can legitimately agree to permit liaisons with others. (4) Why marriage requires a pledge of permanence and not merely an agreement to stay together for a specified term, or “for as long as love lasts.” (5) Why law and public policy legitimately treat marriage as a matter pertaining to the public interest, and not as a purely private matter (like ordinary friendship or like religious events such as baptisms and bar mitzvahs). Moreover, the conjugal view, unlike the revisionist view, can make sense of the concept of marital consummation by sexual intercourse. Further, it can account for the idea that marriage is inherently, and not merely incidentally, a procreative partnership, and the idea that a valid marriage can be entered into by a man and a woman who, due to the infertility of one or both spouses, will not be able to conceive children. (The key there is to see that the link between marriage and procreation is not a means-end connection. Just as it is a mistake to regard marriage as a mere form of sexual-romantic companionship or domestic partnership, it is a mistake to view procreation and child-rearing as extrinsic ends to which marriage is a means. For a man and woman to marry is indeed for them to enter into a distinctive type of relationship—a conjugal union—that is oriented to procreation and would naturally be fulfilled by having and rearing children together; but being in that type of relationship is intrinsically, and not merely instrumentally valuable.)

The complete text of the interview is available here .

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