The issue of gays rights to marry is a volatile and extremely relevant issue our country is facing today. This issue has been a long time in the making, and many people have had to undue hardships in life because of the current situation homosexual people face today. Homosexual Americans are not granted the same rights and social acceptance that their heterosexual counterparts enjoy. This is a cause for concern.
In America, land of the free, how is our society condoning blatant exclusion and bigotry towards a group of people who only want to be accepted? Looking at the current situation of gay rights will show that there is only one logical way to proceed: the legalization of gay marriage. The various arguments against gay marriage will be examined. First off, God does not hate homosexual people. Generally speaking, those to oppose homosexual people view the lifestyle as a sin against God and nature. That statement shows the bigotry and ignorance of the average religious person in America.
If you view God as a loving all knowing being, how can you have the right to judge someone and say that God hates him or her because they are gay? As human beings, we have to love, accept and tolerate everyone, this is what God taught. Not even the “best Christian” should have the ability to judge anyone in this world. Luke 6:37 states that, “Judge not, and you will not be judged; condemn not, and you will not be condemned; forgive, and you will be forgiven.” Being homosexual is also not against nature; homosexuality has been around since the dawn of time and is practiced in the animal world instinctually. How can someone say that something is not nature’s way when over 1500 animal species practice homosexuality naturally?
Society needs to view marriage as a bond between two loving people, regardless of gender. These are people who want to profess their love for one another, and this should not be viewed from an outdated religious viewpoint. A landmark decision was made to allow people of all sexuality the right to marry when the governor of Vermont signed a bill allowing same-sex unions in 1999. Studies have shown that this ruling has had no observable negative effects on their population.
In addition to that fact, many nations currently allow gay marriage including: Belgium, Spain, Canada, South Africa, Norway, Denmark and Sweden; their societies are more open-minded and accepting than in America. At first, religious groups adamantly opposed it, but now years later the majority of them have seen it to have no negative effect and no longer oppose the law. Attitudes towards homosexual people are much more tame, and violence towards homosexuals is much lower in Europe.
They all have progressive citizens who are open-minded and have lower suicide rates due to the cultural acceptance of the lifestyle. While nowhere is perfect, we can look to these countries and realize that acceptance of homosexual marriage is valid and allows for a generally more peaceful population. Another statistic that is in favor of allowing gay marriage is that researcher Darren Spendale found that 15 years after Denmark had granted same-sex couples the rights of marriage, rates of heterosexual marriage in those countries had gone up, and rates of heterosexual divorce had gone down. These findings would dispute the argument that allowing homosexual marriage would dissolve the foundation of heterosexual marriage.
Some fairly recent promising policies in America that deal with gay rights are as follows: on May 17, 2004 Massachusetts became the first state in the country to legalize gay marriage, after that New Jersey and Connecticut followed suit. New York also allows the recognition of gay marriage in other states, but they cannot legally get married in the state. The most notable policy that was made and recently changed was the legalization of gay marriage in California, and then the striking down of that law with Proposition 8.
They legalization of gay marriage was a big step forward for the gay rights problem, and then a couple months later, a big step back. Moving on, sexuality is not a chosen fact, despite what many uneducated and under informed members of society will argue. Why would an individual in society choose to make their life harder, be discriminated against, and many times lose the support of those they love most? In the words of Dr. Henry Yestman, “sexual preference is not a choice, you do not choose to be homosexual or heterosexual as the case might be”. Society should move towards the viewpoint that it makes the person unique and not “abnormal”.
Also, Andrea Camperio-Ciani who is a Professor at the University of Padova claims that the theory of a single gay gene is not valid and that it is not a choice to be gay. He has strengthened this claim by scientifically finding out what makes gay people gay. There is still a lot to find out, but his new work is promising. If a person chooses to believe that the lifestyle is a choice that is simply ignorant on their part.
Just as the religious right wing is completely off base, on the other side are the extreme gay activists, who only hurt the gay rights movement; journalist Alicia Colon who stated, “I know that the militant activists who leave no room for discussion do not represent the majority of the gay community”, expresses the idea in great words. Her statement is very true because the majority of gay people are not demanding special rights or to be treated better than anyone else, just to be treated the same as everyone else.
There are also many misconceptions that are associated with people who are gay. Gay people are not the typical effeminate male or masculine female that is conjured up in the minds of many people. Another misconception is that all gay men are promiscuous and incapable of having stable relationships. To put all gay people into one stereotypical group is doing a great disservice to one’s fellow human, as with any stereotype. People who oppose gay unions focus on the point that marriage is traditionally between a man and a woman. Just because something has been done in the past does not make it right. Society should progress with the evolution of the people in it. Rules and laws are meant to be changing with the times.
To the people who oppose government benefits for same sex couples, ask this: what difference will it make? If a same sex couple gets married or have a civil union that has no affect on someone a heterosexual couple’s marriage. That person would be the only one who could place that affect upon themselves. One does not have to agree with the gay lifestyle, but should tolerate it and support their fellow humans’ love for their partner. Many heterosexual people abuse the right to marry, and have high divorce rates, are these people really deserving of the right to marry? Currently we are favoring a certain type of human relationship, and that is not what America is about.
While there is obviously not going to be a unanimous decision on the issue anytime soon, everyone deserves the right to live a happy like to the fullest extent they wish, without interference from other individuals or groups. The Constitution states that are men are created equal. Discrimination is not American and should not be tolerated. One does not have to agree with everything about the gay lifestyle, but they can create a tolerance and respect their fellow humans’ right to have a happy and productive life, while enjoying the benefits their other human counterparts do.
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