For decades gay rights has been at the forefront of national debates, especially the debate on gay marriage. In today’s society gay marriage is being pushed to be legal in all 50 states, currently it is only legal in Massachusetts, New Hampshire, Connecticut, Maryland, Maine, New York, Vermont, Iowa, Washington and most recently Rhode Island. The debate over whether gay marriage is moral is really up to which side of the debate one stands on.
Currently in the United States same sex marriage is illegal in thirty-eight of the fifty states by either the U.S. Constitution or by the states own laws. The laws stipulate that no two same sex people can enter into marriage legally. The Defense of Marriage Acts (DOMA) states that marriage is between one man and one woman, but that gay marriage will further weaken the institution is the opinion of those who oppose the idea. In Texas the state has banned both domestic partnership and civil unions by U.S. Constitution and state law. Another argument that protestors of same sex unions state is that marriage is for procreation purposes. Since homosexual couple cannot procreate they have no reason to be married. This is a really hard to make a case from this statement as to the fact that more individuals have conceiving children out of marriage. It can also be said for the individuals who are infertile, should they be denied the right to be married? This statement is rather ridiculous no matter which side of the argument one is on. Since 1993 the states have taken their place on where they each stand on the same sex relationships. Some states have either banned all forms of same sex relationships, some variation, or allows all relationships including marriage. The laws are decided by each state on whether to allow same sex marriage or to ban it. The first state to allow same sex marriage is Vermont in 1999, in a Supreme Court ruling Baker v. Vermont stating that same sex couple are entitled to the same rights, protections, benefits as the heterosexual couples. Next state to rule in favor of same sex marriage is Massachusetts in 2003, since then eight more states have over turned their laws against same sex marriage. Society’s support on homosexuality has come a long way in the last four decades. In a recent Washington Post poll shows that 58 percent of Americans support the legalization of gay marriage and only 36 percent oppose it; that is light years ahead of where it all began. According to NORC 2011, in1988 when the University of Chicago did a poll only 11 percent of Americans were in support of gay marriage. According to a study by Tom Smith of the University of Chicago (2011), when individuals were asked what about sexual relations between two adults of the same sex – do you think its always wrong, almost always wrong, sometimes wrong, not wrong at all or don’t know, etc. the poll showed that the individuals who answered always wrong declined from 69.7 percent in 1973 to 43.5 percent in 2010. The same sex marriage supporters are split not only by generations but political affliction, area of residence, and religion. The younger generations of our country do not agree with the older generations because the mind set is different. The younger generations are looking past the color or one’s skin, their sexual orientation, or religious views to see that person as another human being. The elder generations grew up passing judgment, and prejudices on those who were different then themselves. In political views more Democrats are in favor of passing the legalization of gay marriage where as the Republicans are very reluctant. Some of the decisions are largely based upon the religious beliefs, conservatives are very much opposed to the legalization, but the liberal, progressives, and secularists are in favor. Lastly, residency plays anther part in the debate over same sex marriage. People living in the northeast are supportive, west coast of the country are split...
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Marcellino, A. (2009). Congressional Budget office Estimate H.R. 2517. Retrieved from http://www.cbo.gov
Vespa-Pepaleo, J. (2008). The Legal, Medical, Economic & Social Consequences of New Jersey’s Civil Union Law. Retrieved from http://www.nj.gov
Smith, T. (September, 2011). Public Attitudes Towards Homosexuals. NORC/University of Chicago
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