Daniela Chirinos Peralta
December 14th, 2009
The second article of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights clearly states: “Everyone is entitled to all the rights and freedoms set forth in this Declaration, without distinction of any kind, such as race, colour, sex, language, religion, political or other opinion, national or social origin, property, birth or other status”. Visibly, since 1948, when this Declaration was written, principles of equality have been established in society. Nevertheless, the dispute over the legalization of gay marriage is a common subject of debate and the cause of numerous headlines all over the globe. Why if human rights have been settled, is society still debating on a right that all humans should have? “Marriage is a civil right that must be extended to all people, regardless of gender or sexuality” (168, R. Claire Snyder).
Homosexual individuals should be allowed to wed in order to establish parity and equality of rights between homosexual and heterosexual people. The final legalization of same-sex marriage throughout the world is a step towards having a more equal society. Everyone is entitled to have the same rights. At the same time, allowing gay marriage would end oppression inside society and create harmony and peace. Also, legal homosexual matrimony would give access to gay individuals to economic and legal rights concerning their partners. This is why there are many reasons and various aspects that prove that the legalization of homosexual wedlock is a tremendous step that all societies need to take.
Non- supporters of the legalization of same-sex marriage; specially conservatives and religious believers, argue that marriage is a sacred union between a man and a woman with the purpose of creating new life. However, if procreation was the whole and only intention of matrimony, then why are infertile heterosexual couples, as well as elderly people allowed to marry? Jonathan Rauch, American author, journalist and activist wrote in the political magazine The New Republic, that “For a homosexual a union is, anatomically speaking, nothing but one variety of a sterile union and no different even in principle: a woman without a uterus has no more potential for giving birth than a man without a vagina”. Then, Rauch continues, “If the possibility of having children is what gives meaning to marriage, then a postmenopausal woman who applies for a marriage license should be turned away at the courthouse door”. As Rauch declares, procreation can not be the only purpose or goal of marriage. Every time a sterile person, a postmenopausal woman, or an impotent man gets married, it is obvious that they are not going to have children by natural means. Still, there is no opposition to their weddings. Allowing these cases, but denying same-sex marriage is an outrageous act of injustice and a severe violation of the civil and human rights. Matrimony is a union based on other equally important values, such as love, respect and loyalty. R. Claire Snyder-Hall, Associate Professor of Government and Politics in Political Theory, explained “People who used to imagine that homosexuals must be inordinately driven by sexuality, might come to see that same-sex relationships are about a lot more than just sex; they are also about all the mundane things that heterosexual marriage is about. Having someone to come home to, eating together, doing dishes, keeping house, paying bills, watching TV”. (164, R. Claire Snyder). Love, is an essential emotion for human beings; and marriage is the ultimate expression of it; the commitment of a lifetime with a partner. It is a right that should definitely be extended to all members of society. There are plenty of opinions that differ when it comes to defining the word “marriage”. According to Andrew Sullivan, British author and political commentator, “If marriage is to fulfill its aspirations,...