Sunday, December 24, 2006

"Do you solemnly swear you are not a transsexual..."

I found this on the (en)gendered forum;

Transsexual question unique to Clark County
During the marriage license oath, couples are asked whether either person is a transsexual or has syphilis.

By Gail Cetnar
Springfield News-Sun
Staff Writer

Most couples on their way to the wedding chapel are prepared to answer the big question.

You know, the one they answer "I do."

Few are prepared for a more personal question they get first at the courthouse — and only in Clark County.

Sharon Weldy knows that better than anyone.

Issuing marriage licenses is part of her job description as deputy clerk of Clark County Probate Court. Each couple that approaches her desk must fill out the application, pay a $45 fee and raise their right hand to take an oath before they're issued a license.

Weldy, poised and professional, looks at the happy couple and pleasantly begins to recite the oath.

"Do you solemnly swear you are not a transsexual..."

That's when the looks of bewilderment hit.

"Most of the time, I'd say 75 percent of the time, when I give the oath I get laughter or giggles or questionable looks. You know, they can't believe that's what they're being asked to say," Weldy said.

She continues with a list of other questions: Are they related closer than second cousins? Are they under the influence of intoxicating liquor or a controlled substance? Are they infected with syphilis?

If they swear they're not, they get the license.

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