Let's not sugarcoat this issue any longer. Supporters of extending benefits to "Domestic Partners" of city employees say this is not about sex or morality but about equality for all city employees. Bull! The mere definition of a domestic partner throws the sex and morality issue right in our faces. The definition all but says that city employees can provide benefits for the person they have been living with AND having sex with for at least a year. If they happen to share some financial responsibilities such as rent, mortgage, utilities, etc. that solidifies the relationship. I ask this question, what does the term "intimate" mean in the domestic partner definition? Would the definition be met if there was no sexual relationship involved? If the answer to that question is yes, then two best friends who live together as roommates and share expenses and are "committed" to one another as friends could in theory meet this definition. The only difference in this type of relationship is that there is no sex involved. So are we now discriminating against asexual partners?
Let's look at the moral issue. There are those who consider their sexual orientation to be bi-sexual. So let's say a city employee lives with a male and a female in an intimate and committed relationship. Would benefits be extended to both non city employees? If not, wouldn't you be discriminating against the bi-sexual employee? How about those who prefer polygamous relationships? If a man had seven live in girlfriends and was sexually intimate with all of them for at least a year, would all the girlfriends be eligible for benefits? If no, why not? Wouldn’t you be making a moral judgment against this man because he felt he was born to live a polygamous lifestyle?
As you can see the nuances of this can be endless and the proverbial Pandora’s Box has now been opened. However, there is a rather simple way to determine who really is in an intimate and committed relationship with shared financial responsibilities...it's called marriage.