Gay Marriage an Oxymoron
A monumental moment in the gay rights movement was when the state of California passed Proposition 8, a bill of legislature that solidified a ban on gay marriage. Also referred to as “Prop H8 (Hate)”, millions of Americans were shocked to learn that even in the liberal state of California, bigotry seemed to prevail. Comedian Jon Stewart remarks “Recently, the highest court in South Africa handed down a decision ordering the country’s parliament to extend marriage rights to all gay couples. So just to reiterate, America is now less progressive than South Africa.” In spite of being politically incorrect and crude, Stewart makes a valid point. When did the land of the free become the home of don’t disagree? As American’s we are guaranteed the right to think and feel however we choose to, but to the extent that one may act on these feelings is depressingly limited. The highly inflated argument for the ban on gay marriage is a profusely politicized and religiously charged debate. To say that same sex couples should have the right to marry because they are just as deserving as opposite-sex couples seems to be a cheap and flimsy argument, because it implies the possibility that same-sex couples may not meet some arbitrary standard. It is an unquestionable truth that a ban on gay marriage infringes upon the American principles of equal protection and equal opportunity. A major aspect in the argument to ban gay marriage is that it invades the religious sanctity of marriage as an institution. This might prove true if marriage in America was a strictly religious entity. From the east coast to the west coast, you will not travel through one state that mandates a wedding ceremony to honor any specific religion. In America you are not required to hold a religious service to legally wed, and it is because of this that marriage is a civil affair (Miller). In any state a judge or a civil servant may perform a marriage ceremony. In some states a marriage
Cited: Family Equality Council. “Page 1.” Triumph Over Tragedy: the Langbehn-Pond Family’s story. Family Equality Council , 19 July 2007. Web. 12 Nov. 2009. . Friedman, Lawrence M. Private Lives: Families, Individuals, and the Law. Cambridge, MA: Harvard University Press, 2005. Print. IPPF. “The Right to Decide whether or when to have Children.” International Planned Parenthood Federation. IPPF , 2008. Web. 10 Nov. 2009. . Miller, Karen. “Same-Sex Marriage .” Opposing Viewpoint Resource Center. Detroit: Greenhaven Press, 2008, n.d. Web. 10 Nov. 2009. . Peterson, Gary W. Handbook of marriage and the family . N.Y.C, New York: Pelnum Press, 1999. Print. Rauch, Jonathan. Gay Marriage: Why It’s Good for Gays, Good for Straights, and Good for America. New York: Holt, 2004. Print.