Same-sex Marriage and the Economy
To begin, I would like to discuss the basics. The institution of marriage is the foundation of the family and of society. Even though it is a private institution, it has been controlled by society, depending on the specific time and history, religious perceptions, legal rules or customs, and norms. According to historical legal readings, marriage has been viewed as a heterosexual union, same-sex relationships are excluded from the definition of "marriage". Same-sex relationships have not been legally recognized in most countries and, as a result, homosexual partners are denied many of the legal and economic privileges automatically granted with marital status. Only recently, some countries have become more open to grant rights for same-sex couples, but the justification is rather on egalitarian than on economic grounds. The aim of this essay is to examine the economic benefits that states would receive if they legalized same-sex marriage. It will be argued that there are hardly any reasons not to legalize it. Yet, tradition and social values might make it more desirable to let the relationship be recognized under a different name than “marriage”: a domestic partnership. The benefits gay and lesbian couples are granted when their union is legally recognized greatly outweighs their private benefits. They not only experience incentives to form a long-term union, but might also profit from a reduction in the social stigmatism of homosexuality. The benefits concerning legalizing same-sex marriage, which might be perceived as costs, and the costs, which might be perceived as benefits, will be examined.
In the United States today, gays, lesbians, bisexual and transgender citizens are denied 1,138 rights that everyone else is allowed to have. The economic benefits of gay’s having rights would be huge. Since marriage is a $70 billion dollar industry, having gay marriage legal would boost our economy $17 billion more dollars. An average wedding costs $19,000 dollars, so with gays and lesbians making up 5% (10,456,405) of the total U.S population having 250,000 more weddings a year would make the economy go up $17 billion dollars. The economy would also get a big boost from more tourists. They would come to the states where gay marriage is legal, which equals more money. In the short time that San Francisco issued wedding licenses to same sex couples, more than 3,000 gay couples from more than 20 states traveled to California to get married. “Extending marriage to same-sex couples will boost Vermont’s economy by over $30.6 million over three years, which would generate increases in state and local government tax and fee revenues by $3.3 million and create approximately 700 new jobs”. If you look carefully through the numbers, the thing that actually makes the numbers work in gay marriage's favor is the caring of one person for another. When people show they care, they spend -- on gifts, dinners, weekend getaways. On the other end of the spectrum, when people are in need and there is someone there to care for them, they are less reliant on social services. This makes the commitment of marriage very profitable indeed. In any event, commitment should be embraced. For every two marriages in this country, there is one divorce. The number of lifelong company employees has shrunk. And these are just two examples of many that we could all think of, I'm sure. So when commitment does come along, or at least the prospect of it, we should pull out the stops to support it -- and that means with laws too.
Children of homosexual couples would also benefit from gay rights. More kids would have safe homes to go to. Since gay adoption has become legal in more places, the number of foster kids has gone down. Also the children of homosexual couples would be better cared for. The child would have visitation rights, could claim inheritances or other household items in case of death. If one parent dies the...
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