Gay marriage, in other words, same-sex marriage is defined as “the legally recognized union between partners of the same sex” (Oxford Dictionary Online). During the early period, people have been prejudiced against gay and lesbian marriage. It’s understandable since any big change in public policy must be justified and its risks carefully evaluated from their point of view. A number of questions have been made: “Do gays and lesbians make good parents as good as straight parents?”, “Will their childen’s sex be affected by them?” “Will it break down family values?” This issue has been stirring discussion for years. However, people have been supportive and gay marriage has gained more and more acceptances lately. According to BBC News, Netherlands was the first country to legalize same-sex marriage in April 1st, 2001 following by Belgium, Oriato (Canada) and British Columbia allowed equal marriage for gay and lesbian couples in the next two years (2003). Currently, there are 19 countries and 17 states where gay marriage is legal and people are more likely to support same-sex marriage. Apparently, this term has become more popular in Vietnam as the “I do” campaign attracted more than 70000 likes on facebook and thousands of photos and videos with content I do (Lan 2013), which strongly encourages gay marriage to become legal. This paper discusses the question whether gay marriage should be legalized or not.
2. Discussion of findings
Homosexual or gay is a person who is sexually attracted to people of their own sex (Oxford Dictionary Online). The question of how homosexual orientation originates has been the subject of much press, with the general impression being promoted that homosexuality is largely a matter of genes, rather than environmental factors. An American research has found that genetic factors account for 30-40% of what decides whether a person is gay or straight. Dr Micheal Bailey confirmed: “ Sexual orientation has nothing to do with choice.” However, it’s not completely determinative, environmental and social factors also play an important role. In 1973, the American Psychological Association removed homosexuality from its official mental disorders. On May 19th 1990, the General Assembly of the World Health Organization (WHO) did the same action which served to end more than a century of medical homophobia. This decision constitutes a historic date and a huge success for the members LBGT community. As what’ve been mentioned above, some countries has begun to accept gay people in society. The Williams Institute at the UCLA School of Law, a sexual orientation law and public policy think tank, estimates that 9 million (about 3.8%) of Americans identify as gay, lesbian, bisexual or transgender (2011). The institute also found that bisexuals make up 1.8% of the population, while 1.7% are gay or lesbian. Transgender adults make up 0.3% of the population. A poll has carried out by a Non-Government Organization name CARE showed that the number of gays in Vietnam is approximately 70000 (account for 0,09% of population). In 2003, Binh (Director of Institute for Studies of Society, Economy and Environment) stated that 2% of Vietnamese are gay. Homosexual people are nothing but the same as heterosexual people physically and mentally except for their sexual orientation. According to the scientists, the existence of homosexual is a reality which cannot be denied for years ago regardless of whether the government chooses to acknowledge it.
In spite of the fact that homosexual people are no different from straight ones, some people still oppose to same sex marriage. In the 18th century, some countries such as India, Singapore, Russia discriminated against gay people unfairly when putting them into prison for having sex. They think being gay is a sin and it needs to be cured. The most basic argument presented by gay marriage opponents purports that marriage between two people of the same sex is "not natural" and is in violation of the "natural order." These people believe gays and lesbians should not be allowed to marriage since they cannot procreate. Some argue that gay marriage is a threat to the sanctity of opposite sex marriage and beliefs in religion. Doctor Blankenhom claims with little evidence that same sex marriage will lead to serious consequences which are children’s lack of parents’ love and increasing crime rate and taxes. Yet no one has given the persuasive evidence enough to prove that same sex marriage would break family values. 2.3
Richard Lane firmly stated: "If someone is gay, then they deserve respect and equality regardless." Everybody deserves to be treated under the laws: "liberty and justice for all", homosexual people are not the exception. Gay couples should be allowed to publicly celebrate their commitment and enjoy benefits as well as heterosexual couples. The concept of “traditional marriage” is historically inaccurate and the society will function successfully with gay marriage. In fact, homosexual marriage would bring some benefits as gay couples have the right to adopt and provide home for children. Moreover, banning gay marriage would increases rates of psychological disorders and divorce rates. Marriage is a commitment between two people without reference to their sex as long as they respect each other. There for, people nowadays have been supportive of legalizing gay marriage. According to CNN, U.S. government expanded recognition of same-sex marriages in federal legal matters. Holder stated :”It’s the (Justice Department’s) policy to recognize lawful same sex marriages as broadly as possible, to ensure equal treatment for all members of society regardless of sexual orientation.” Gay marriage has gain approval from Vietnamese recently. In November 2013, Vietnam’s National Assembly made an important step towards marriage which is decriminalizing gay wedding ceremonies and giving same sex couples the right to live together. Gay rights activists strongly believe that this move is a step on the path towards full equality for gays and lesbians. There are significant changes over the past five years thanks to the efforts of LGBT community and several civil rights unions. Some events such as flash-mob performances “Love is Love”, “Vietpride” and “I do” campaign have attracted the participation of thousands of people. A survey conducted by Isee showed that up to 75% of surveyed people support the rights to marriage of homosexual couples, despite the discrimination against them. Generally, gay marriages in Vietnam has made a huge move to success and be recognized.
Lan 2013, Campaign “I do” launched to support same-sex marriage, Vietnamnet, September 18 2013, viewed January 20, 2014, http://english.vietnamnet.vn/fms/society/87147/campaign--i-do--launched-to-support-same-sex-marriage.html Same-Sex Marriage Legalized in Amsterdam, BBC News, April 23 2013, viewed January 20 2014