Repent, Sinners!

According to this article, the City Council of Black Jack, Missouri is forbidding unmarried couples with children to live in their city. An unmarried couple with three children was denied an occupancy permit on a home they had purchased in this St. Louis suburb based solely on their marital (or lack thereof) status. The city ordinance forbids more than three people who aren't related by "blood, marriage, or adoption" from living together to prevent overcrowding problems.

Now, as my wise friend Andy says, legislating morality against gays who want the same legal rights as their hetero counterparts do is easy and obvious. I mean, what's more immoral than two individuals who have spent the last 10 years of their lives together, paying their taxes, raising their children, supporting their local economy, and contributing to their community wanting to make their union permanent and valid in the eyes of the goverment through marriage, right? But legislating morality against immoral heteros? Scandelous!

Once again, we have a governmental body stepping in to decide what constitutes a "family" and what does not, based on a narrowminded, religion-based viewpoint. Clearly, two adults and three children living together in a house does not an "overcrowded living situation" make. Yet the City Council is upholding this law, and in doing so is clearly sending the message that those who choose to "live in sin" with children born as a result of that relationship are not welcome to live together in their town. They are the "other." They have done something wrong, and they are being run out of town because of it.

Is it still 1952 out there in middle America?

8 Responses to “Repent, Sinners!”

  1. # Anonymous Clare Eats

    oh wow thats horrendous!  

  2. # Anonymous sher

    Every so often, you see these bizarre laws in parts of the country. With all the problems that any locality is bound to have, it amazes me that people focus their attention on trying to deny other people any happiness, supposedly for "moral" reason. I hope someone challenges this law in court.  

  3. # Blogger annelynn

    I was just listening to NPR yesterday ("This American Life") and was stunned to hear that *mixed race* couples were still illegal in much of the south through the mid-70's. Wha..?! I guess that makes me pretty naive. Craziness.

    I hope someone challenges this law you write about, too. How ridiculous.  

  4. # Blogger l

    A lot of municipalities have ordinances like this, especially in college towns and they really were originally written to prevent overcrowding. To use such an ordinance in a manner not intended at its inception and instead to discriminate is itself immoral. Does the municipality of this suburb then believe that the Constitution is a "living" document? 'Cause if so, then that means that Roe v. Wade should stand, no? Doesn't seem in-line with their stance on this unmarried family, keyword being FAMILY.  

  5. # Blogger Christine

    I read about this the other day on and was completely livid.

    Livid, but not shocked. And that is sad.  

  6. # Blogger Binulatti

    Having just taken a work trip to middle america, I can say with confidence that yes, it is 1952. And they think that's just peachy.  

  7. # Blogger Kristi

    Clare-It is, isn't it?

    Sher-Great point. You'd think that town would have other problems to deal with.

    Annelynn-I've heard that as well. Some would say that's still going on today in parts of this country, although not as actual laws.

    L-Another good point. It's as if they're saying, "No, you can't have an abortion, Miss Unmarried 21 year old girl, but you can't live in our town with the baby's father either." Ugh.

    Christine-Yup. I had the same reaction.

    Karrie- Truly scary. Go blog about your trip.  

  8. # Anonymous Anonymous

    That's a great story. Waiting for more. » »  

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