Gay Marriage: Pros and Cons

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Marriage Is Not Equal For All
Gay Marriages

Mikaela Acosta


Gay marriage has been subject to taboo because our society has this conformed and learned version of marriage; marriage is only held between a man and a woman. Although this is more common today to hear of gay couples, in the first couple centuries in America this was almost unacceptable to general society. Beginning in 2001 was when gay marriage began to become much more widespread starting in Canada, Norway, Belgium, Argentina, Sweden, South Africa, and Iceland. The actual first introduction of gay marriage does vary from different jurisdictions. Gay marriage is such a topic of interest because of the various conflicts in which it brings up, such as religious, civil rights, social, moral, and political issues.

“The battle has such intensity, even ferocity, because both sides suspect—though they may not want to acknowledge this suspicion, even to themselves—that no real victory is available to either of them..”

Robert A. Burt, author of the article Belonging in America: How to Understand Same-Sex Marriage, believes this is the major conflict between those who oppose and support gay marriage. The typical nuclear family is not so typical anymore; it is rare to find that in most households today. As a whole, society has evolved from being conformed into the neat status quo set for ourselves from years before. Although this may not be necessarily a great quality of modernized marriage, due to high rates of divorce, it does highly diversify us. Supporters of gay marriage are ridiculed for wanting to change the traditional set of family values held on for so many years. For the anti-gay marriage supporters, most believe that gay marriage changes the traditional idea of marriage that is sacred and should only be held between a man and woman. Another argument can also be that marriage is for procreation of children, not just for merely the sake of marrying. Gay marriage is sensitive to the topic of separating church and state, this crosses the fine line between the two. Most of the population of the world is influenced by religion in some way, conservative or liberal religionists. The government has much of the power when it comes to laws, but the government does not define love. All of us are entitled to our own beliefs and moral values, but what makes legalizing gay marriage nationally so difficult is that very fine line that is crossed time and time again. The government has much of the power when it comes to laws, but the government does not define love.

The Defense of Marriage Act was brought into recognition in the Baehr v. Lewin case in May of 1991; the plaintiffs alleged that the Department of Health’s interpretation and application of the Hawaii Marriage Law to deny same-sex couples access to marriage licenses, in which violated the plaintiffs' rights to privacy, equal protection - both of which were guaranteed by the Hawaii Constitution. The denial of marriage was based on the sole fact that they were the same sex. The Baehr v. Lewin case thus made it legal to have a same sex marriage in Hawaii thereafter. The question which this case brings to mind would be the legal boundaries the denial of same-sex marriage is crossing. As the first amendment states we hold the rights to freedom of religion, speech, and the press, as well as the right to assemble and petition the government; so why is marriage denied to couples of the same sex? In the article Part of the Symposium on DOMA by Rhonda Wasserman, it is explained that Congress chose to protect heterosexual marriage because of its "deep and abiding interest in encouraging responsible procreation and child-rearing”. Which again proposes the issue of whether or not the government has the direct authority to determine what is best for a child between a gay marriage and a heterosexual one.

In 2008 about 116,000 same-sex couples across the country were raising a total of about 250,000 children...
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