This morning, the California Supreme Court will announce its decision on whether or not a slim 50% majority can amend the state constitution in order to specifically deny a previously-recognized constitutional right. It will also determine the fate of the 18,000 same-sex marriages performed last year, between the state Supreme Court’s decision that same-sex marriage was a constitutional right in California, and the passage of Proposition 8. The New York Times quotes one man whose marriage is currently in legal limbo:
?The 18,000 marriages will be evidence that California is not going to fall apart if gay people get married,? Mr. Lok said. ?It?s not like there?s not going to be an earthquake.?
Oh ho ho, won’t Mr. Lok and his husband be chuckling at that one when San Francisco falls into the ocean! In fact, the potential link between same-sex marriage and earthquakes is one of the strongest arguments I’ve ever seen in favor of preserving the traditional-except-for-all-the-ways-we’ve-changed-it-in-the-past institution of opposite-sex-only marriage.
While the observation that same-sex marriage might be followed by earthquakes has been made before – notably by Israeli parliamentarian Shlomo Benizri and American preacher Pat Robertson – science has advanced beyond the simple “God does it” explanations most commonly proposed by nutcase conservative public figures. Below the fold, I will tell you how we actually think this process works.
The Castro district in San Francisco is constantly emitting small pulses of gay energy, called Love waves. These Love waves usually pass harmlessly through the crust, causing only occasional dirty thoughts in sensitive individuals.
Each time that a committed same-sex couple’s family bond is recognized and supported by the government, another pulse of gay energy is emitted from the relevant bureau. If this recognition occurs in the form of marriage, the pulse is strengthened, by a factor of approximately 31, through a complicated resonance of the couple’s wedding rings with their official marriage license (the exact multiplier varies depending on the font chosen by each county registrar, but it’s usually Helvetica).
Under normal conditions, these Love waves would also dissipate harmlessly in the crust. However, due to California’s unique geographic and geological conditions, the pulses emitted from state offices in Sacramento combine with the Love waves coming from the Castro in a phenomenon known as constructive interference. This interaction creates a pattern of standing Love waves in the soft sediments of the Sacramento-San Joaquin Delta:
At the constructively interfering nodes between San Francisco and Sacramento, gay energy is strong enough to penetrate the crust all the way to the seismogenic zone. The effects of this penetration on the seismogenic zone are governed by lubrication theory. Suffice it to say, when enough gay energy lubricates the underlying faults, California will be doomed – maybe not immediately after same-sex marriage is finally legalized for good, but definitely on or after April 15 the following year. Nothing emits pulses of pure gay energy more efficiently than a joint tax return.
(NB: Small numbers of same-sex marriages, typically involving a transgendered spouse whose legal gender is or was different from his/her preferred or identified gender, have been legally recognized even when same-sex marriage generally has not been. These marriages still cause Love waves to be emitted from Sacramento, but their effects have thus far been lost in the noise of ordinary tectonic and heterosexual seismicity. However, the effects of sub-seismogenic quantities of gay energy on the water in the delta – which is an important source of drinking water for Southern California – have not been studied.)