The People have an interest in ensuring that relationships between individuals are safe, fair, and mutually beneficial.

It is a common conception in the law that there are actually (at least) three parties to every human relationship. The most direct instantiation of that are laws governing criminal conspiracy, where the two individuals involved may not be harming each other or even committing a crime yet nevertheless The People have an interest in controlling their behavior as the third party to the relationship. Although this relationship is frequently abused, as in the case of laws preventing sodomy or miscegenation where the state claims offence even where the two individuals involved were in a consensual relationship there is no compelling evidence is harmful to The People, there are some cases where The People’s rights in a party to the relationship override the privacy rights of the two individuals involved.

For example, Credentials could be used to provide individuals with protection from being victimized in relationships by certain types of individuals. In some jurisdictions a step toward this type of protection has been provided by making sex offender registries publicly available. But that is a very weak protection because it relies on criminal convictions whereas many (probably most) individuals who will commit these crimes have never been convicted (in some cases because they have never committed the crime before, in others simply because they’ve never been caught). And it does nothing to protect people from a wide variety of other types of abusive relationships, including with people who are prone to domestic violence, or who end up in relationships with people of the wrong sexual orientation (in most cases as a result of their partner’s attempt to appear to be heterosexual when in fact they are not).

To address these issues there should be a “Relationship” Credential which would be acquired with the Standard Adult set. It would include some education (basic relationship psychology), a check to ensure the individual had not been convicted of domestic violence, but would also require a brain scan to distinguish sexual orientation (a procedure no more an invasion of privacy than is a heart scan done as part of a yearly physical). If the scan comes back “heterosexual” or “homosexual”, no problem, and the individual would get the Credential and their scan results would be given to them and no copy retained by the scanner. If the scan comes back “pedophile”, or some other classification that would compromise the security or freedom of any potential partner of that individual, no Credential would be granted. Similarly, a conviction for domestic abuse would also result in that Credential being revoked until remedial work had been done to ensure that individual had learned to control their tendencies to be violent.

With this system in place, not only could all individuals protect themselves (and their families) from entering into problematic relationships with non-Credentialed individuals (especially hiring a non-Credentialed individual as a teacher, sports-team coach, or clergy-member), but because sharing their scans would become a conventional part of premarital counselling, many surprises (and disappointments) would also be prevented, all while having negligible impact on the freedoms of unaffected individuals.

Next: Inheritance