Initiative to Ban Divorce in California Mocks Traditional Marriage & Prop. 8

Initiative to Ban Divorce in California Mocks Traditional Marriage & Prop. 8

By now, many of you may have heard of the 2010 California Marriage Protection Act, which would ban divorce in the state of California. John Marcotte, a Sacramento web designer, started the initiative earlier this year in order to satire pro-family arguments in support of Proposition 8.

According to Marcotte, the measure is a logical extension of the Prop. 8 efforts to defend traditional marriage. “Since California has decided to protect traditional marriage, I think it would be hypocritical of us not to sacrifice some of our own rights to protect traditional marriage even more,” Marcotte told NPR News.

No one is really sure if Marcotte, who has recently gathered quite a following, is serious or not. He continues to claim that the initiative is entirely serious rather than an attempt to undermine the Prop.8 campaign through mockery. Take a look at the outrageously offensive Public Service Announcement below and decide for yourself if this is serious or not.


If serious, Marcotte and his organization,, will need to gather 694,354 valid signatures by March 22 in order to get the initiative on the ballot for 2010. If passed, the measure would amend the state constitution to ban divorce while still allowing couples to seek annulments.

What is most interesting about the campaign, as is the case with much satire, is how the campaign has managed to point out the true underlying issue obscured by all the politics. Marcotte is correct—a legal ban on abortion is the logical extension of the arguments made in favor of Prop. 8. Then why does it seem so ridiculous?

Because, as the above PSA makes abundantly clear, society no longer respects or values marriage, traditional or otherwise. It is most often portrayed and viewed as a burden that one takes on with the expectation of eventual failure. In this context, same-sex marriage really is an issue of rights, the equal right of all to suffer and reject the confines of marriage.

So the real question is how we restore a societal belief in the value of marriage and an understanding of its true role and function. . . . Maybe banning divorce really is the answer.

  • Kira
    Posted at 15:46h, 03 December Reply

    Proponents of ballot measures like Proposition 8 and Question 1 claimed that gay people seeking equal rights were a threat to children, “religious freedoms”, “traditional marriage” and a whole host of other things. Now you’re complaining that this ad is “offensive”? Please!

    If people really want to “protect traditional marriage” let them put their money where their mouths are. The Bible condemns divorce many more times than it does homosexuality, and divorce poses a direct threat to heterosexual marriage whereas same-sex marriage poses none. If anything should be prohibited to “protect traditional marriage” it should be divorce.

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