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The Ongoing Debate Over Same-Sex Marriage

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The debate over same-sex marriage is going back and forth throughout the entire country. Issues such as the safety of children, validity of heterosexual marriage, and religion are common to the controversy. Though many are against gay marriage, marriage should be based on love despite of gender or sexual orientation. Same-sex marriage should be legalized throughout the country and be accepted by all, because it is unfair to homosexuals who may have the desire to be wed.

One concern is validity heterosexual marriage under the allowance of homosexual marriage. Many believe that getting married should be spiritual and meaningful. The sole purposes of marriage are commitment and committing to raise children. Homosexuals cannot have their own children, but they have the option of adopting or having children through artificial insemination. Forty percent of adopted children go to homosexual couples. Though adoption is a choice, it is also limited to homosexuals. Society also discourages single parent families, "Children are best raised in a stable two-parent household. If this is good for heterosexuals, then it is also good for homosexuals. Gay marriage does not destroy marriage, but rather extends this same good way of life to homosexuals."(Reuther). It is best that children live in a two-parent environment, and gay couples may fulfill this role. Numerous heterosexual couples also get married and do not have children. However, their marriages are still valid. People view marriage as spiritual, yet there are people in Elvis Presley costumes who marry people through drive-through windows in Las Vegas. We also see many celebrities who get married and will divorce after brief periods of time. Homosexual marriage will not harm marriage. Unhealthy marriages that are not taken seriously are what harm marriage. Many homosexual couples have been married in Massachusetts for 10-30 years and are still currently committed. There is no actual proof that gay marriages will not persist.

Another problem of gay marriage is discrimination. Many claim that homosexuals are equal to heterosexuals. However, homosexuals still have limitations and are not treated equally, "...the most common argument, like most advanced by interest groups these days, is a charge of bias, inequality and 'privileging'. If gays are social equals of straights, why can't they get married, too?"(Leo). It is a basic right that any couple deserves, in spite of sexual orientation. Same-sex marriage is still a controversy that America has not decided over because of the same laws that forbid interracial couples from marrying in the 1960s. In the past years, a large sum of people in the United States think nothing of interracial marriage and the past laws of the 1960s are now viewed as prejudiced. There are laws that are against discrimination, "Currently, 20 states have laws protecting against discrimination based on sexual orientation, gender identity or both, according to the Human Rights Campaign,"(Smyth) but many states ban gay marriage. As everyone in the country has their own individual rights, homosexuals should also have these rights.

Same-sex marriage is also beneficial to homosexuals. It provides a legal safety net that will help couples as a whole,

"Perhaps the most important aspect of marriage is that it establishes a legal and social relationship which makes it easier for people to "be there" for each other -- economically, emotionally, and psychologically. Most of the rights and privileges that go with marriage are, in fact, ways to help spouses support each other. Married couples are thus much better off than unmarried couples, giving relationships the ability to grow stronger and deeper." (Cline).

Marriage can protect emotional bonds to any couple whether they are homosexual or heterosexual. Homosexuals get married for the same reasons that heterosexual couples get married for. Marriages for homosexuals are helpful to them not only as a couple, but also to themselves as individuals,

"Studies repeatedly demonstrate that people who marry tend to be better off financially, emotionally, psychologically, and even medically. Marriage is not universally an improvement (women, for example, can actually be worse off in some ways), but it generally is. Because of this, it stands to reason that legalized gay marriage will ultimately prove beneficial for gay individuals. This, in turn, will be better for gay couples, the families of gays, and communities where gays live." (Cline).

Because gays cannot marry, it is difficult to help each other through such things as medical emergencies. The responsibility of support and making decisions are given to family members when they should really be given to their spouse. If people can depend upon their relative's spouse, they would be not as anxious about what will happen to their family member, not only during emergencies, but also in general.

Large quantities of those who are against gay marriage oppose it for religious reasons, especially Christians. The bible views homosexuality as something that is immoral and unethical,

"For this reason God gave them up to vile passions. For even their women exchanged the natural use for what is against nature. Likewise also the men, leaving the natural use of the woman, burned in their lust for one another, men with men committing what is shameful, and receiving in themselves the penalty of their error which was due. --Romans 1:26-27" (Edmiston).

Many religious leaders believe



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