A few days ago, the Kentucky attorney general, hard on the heels of being badly defeated as the lieutenant governor candidate in the primary, went into labor and delivered himself of an opinion which he should have aborted at least nine months before, to wit, that the "domestic-partner" goodies devised and approved by the pooh-bahs at both the University of Kentucky and University of Louisville happened to be illegal, according to the State Constitution. Naturally, he had to consider the possible consequences of dispensing that opinion until after the primary, if defeated, or after the general election in November, if on the ballot.
Acting in the interest of the citizens who approved the constitutional amendment structuring his decision, he then proceeded to inform the universities of a way to "beat" the amendment, apparently mostly by plagiarizing material from other states to get the correct language, thus enhancing his integrity as the top prosecutor in the state and informing every school-kid that the law doesn't actually matter if it can be blown away without anyone going to the Big House. After all, the state needs to protect its reputation as being politically the damnedest in the nation.
A "domestic partner" is defined as "either one of an unmarried heterosexual or homosexual cohabiting couple especially when considered as to eligibility for spousal benefits." On 02 November 2004, Amendment 233A was overwhelmingly (about 3 to 1) approved by Kentucky voters and made a part of the Kentucky Constitution: "Only a marriage between one man and one woman shall be valid or recognized as a marriage in Kentucky. A legal status identical or substantially similar to that of marriage for unmarried individuals shall not be valid or recognized." In Kentucky, homosexuals may not legally be married to each other, thus the “partners” are not accorded standing accruing to spouses for consideration(s) provided by the state or institutions regulated or supported by it. The same is true for non-married cohabitating couples, known more familiarly as “shack-ups.” In other words, the "domestic partner" business is a rip-off.
Under the plan adopted erroneously by the universities there were requirements for documentary proof of connections, but that kind of stuff smacked of something like marriage licenses, such as shared credit cards, bank accounts or debts, and even insurance beneficiaries, thus definitely violating the law…too much like marriage/family. Under the new plan, there seem to be no requirements requiring any documents or affidavits to prove anything. Those who apply simply indicate how they satisfy the new language that requires nothing in writing, and their word is just as valid as legal tender. It would appear that the attorney general found a loophole big enough to accommodate a freight train. Well…maybe…remains to be seen.
The current applicants must reapply, and the first requirement is that they must share a primary residence with a covered UK employee for at least 12 months. Applications and/or re-applications are already in process or re-process, even though no one will be eligible under this rule until he/she has shared a primary residence with him/her for a year…unless, of course, the applicant and partner say this is already the case, furnishing no proof, since to do so would require a document of some kind, thus being in violation of the law.
Then, there's the matter of exactly what a primary residence is. How is a primary residence different from a plain, old residence? Who knows? Has anyone heard of a secondary residence, the sharing of which might invalidate the partner? Who knows? Will the university assign policepersons to check every primary residence every day or week to see if the right folks are in the primary residence, whatever that is? Eligible children must be under the age of 25. Twenty-five? How about voting-age – 18, or drinking-age – 21? The child can't be married, either…why not? He/she may not be a relative, either, for obvious reasons. In fact, the "domestic partner" absolutely may not be a relative…that "family" thing again.
Perhaps the most insulting claim made is that no general fund monies will be used in the plan. According to the university, the money will come from the health-care budget that includes money from the general fund, athletics, taxes, and tuition. Do these people think all the great unwashed in the state are dumb enough to fall for that? Even if their statement were true, the money used could, instead, be used for general-fund outlays, which benefit all the citizens legally.
The most egregious aspect of this entire mess of pottage, for which the university is selling its soul, is the selling of its soul…the total in-your-face kiss-off of integrity, law, decency, the will of the people, not to mention its elitism carried to the most obnoxious limits possible. Conspiring with a scheming penultimate politician sworn to uphold the law to thwart the expressed will of the citizens and subvert the law puts the universities in an attitude of "if they don't like it, let 'em eat cake," with respect to the citizens. Hopefully, an attorney general who will take office in January will see to this matter realistically, even if lawsuits are brought before then. If they are, they will be successful, since this scheme stinks legally as well as morally.
In condoning both homosexual behavior and hook-ups used in large part for gratuitous sex outside of marriage, both the attorney general in this case and the university chip away at the basic unit of the society – the family created by the marriage of a man and woman with enough sense of commitment to each other and respect for the institution itself to establish a strong structure in which to raise children. More's the pity, and this is just another example of the ripping-up of the moral fabric so vital to the sustainability of the nation, which is heading toward the heap known as Olde Europe.