[lit-ideas] Re: Marriage Licenses

  • From: David Ritchie <ritchierd@xxxxxxxxxxxxx>
  • To: lit-ideas@xxxxxxxxxxxxx
  • Date: Fri, 9 Sep 2011 21:42:21 -0700

On Sep 9, 2011, at 8:22 PM, Robert Paul wrote:

> Veronica wrote
>>> I can't imagine a Catholic, Protestant or Jewish clergy person officiating 
>>> at a marriage without a state license.  It's required.
> David Ritchie wrote
>> Perhaps in your state.  Not so, California:
>> http://www.cdph.ca.gov/certlic/birthdeathmar/Pages/FAQforMarriageLicenseCeremonyInfo.aspx
> I went to that very site and found
> 'Do I have to review the marriage license prior to solemnizing the marriage?
> 'Yes. The marriage license must be reviewed by the marriage officiant prior 
> to solemnizing the marriage. Any person who solemnizes a marriage without 
> first reviewing the license is guilty of a misdemeanor (Penal Code, Section 
> 360).'
> I'm sure the statute of limitations has run out.
> Robert Paul

Before, after, high tide, low tide, when the surf's up, it's up.  Next thing 
you're gonna tell me they're enforcing traffic laws in Bev. H. (CA), 
"Excuse me [insert name of famous person here] you failed to come to a full and 
complete stop," says reliable officer who takes seriously the fact that he has 
been hired to protect and serve.  
"Have you seen my underpants?" asks [famous person]. "I think I lost them at 
the last intersection."  
"Blimey," responds reliable officer who has been hired to p and s, "I believe 
distinctions among thinking and imagining and remembering have been well 
explored, with considerable wotsit, 'acumen' possibly is the word I want... in 
[insert name of famous philosophical text here]."

Veronica, clearly your state is safe from Robert Burns' early issues about 
whether or not he was married to Jean Armour, after he had made Elizabeth Paton 
pregnant and before his relationship with Mary Campbell.  The question I pass 
over lightly was serious, especially, for example, for Jean Armour's dad.  Back 
when my wife and I were married, I was astonished by California's attitude that 
the state had no duty to inquire into the nature of the ceremony.  As far as 
the state of California was concerned, one ceremony was absolutely equal to 

And why not?  Well because in a case I can't bring to mind--law school was a 
long time ago--a woman who had married in Scotland, and then lived in Wales, 
was refused some kind of settlement (divorce possibly..., but how would a 
commoner get a divorce) on the grounds that her marriage in Scotland had no 
standing, was not proper in England.  

Today apparently some Scots, possibly all, (I don't know whether such 
regulations can be local) have followed California's example: 

David Ritchie,
among pagans in
Portland, Oregon  

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  • » [lit-ideas] Re: Marriage Licenses - David Ritchie