I wanted to make one of those 10 myth of same-sex marriage format type of argument but decided to stick to something simpler. Perhaps if I had more time to formulate the argumnets. Here are my reason why there should be same-sexed marriage.
1) Vote: â€œWill of the people argumentâ€
Opponents of the same-sex marriage state that both in polls and actual votes the majority of the population are against same-sex marriage. The response is that just because the majority supports a position does not mean that it can ignore the needs of the minority or discriminate against them.
a) Parallels with Interracial marriage:
In 1967, the US Supreme Court in Loving v Virginia struck down laws that banned interracial marriage stating â€œUnder our Constitution, the freedom to marry, or not marry, a person of another race resides within the individual and cannot be infringed by the state.â€ Do the words of the Supreme Court no longer make sense just because we substitute the words â€œanother raceâ€ for â€œsame gender?â€ This decision and the earlier decision of Perez v Sharp (1948) came at a time where public opposition to interracial marriage was extremely high.
While the laws against interracial marriage were not enforced, they were not completely repeals until 2000. It was not until 1998 that South Carolina repealed their laws against interracial marriage and in 2000 Alabama. It should be noted that in South Carolina 38% of the votes were against the repeal and in Alabama 41%.http://www.cnn.com/2000/ALLPOLITICS/...a.interracial/http://www.cnn.com/ALLPOLITICS/stori...age/index.html
b) â€œActivist Judgesâ€:
So it seems that without the acts of these â€œactivist judgesâ€ the ban against interracial marriage would have carried on until 2000. The fact is that often in civil rights cases it is these â€œactivist judgesâ€ that are protecting the rights of the people especially those in the minority. If you think about it, these judges are not â€œactivistsâ€ but merely people who are upholding the constitution.
c) Tyranny of the majority:
A society where majority rules and the rights and interests of the minority are not protected is not democracy in action but that of failure. What is more insidious than having laws that discriminate, teaching people to discriminate then turning around and saying that the majority supports such discrimination hence it is valid.
2) Social Collapse Argument:
It is claimed that if same-sex marriage is allowed, society will be split apart, culture will crumble and the moral fabric of the nation will be ripped asunder. If that claim was true then they would have made a very strong argument. But merely repeating a conclusion over and over again without proof or even an explanation as to how society will decay and collapse does not make oneâ€™s conclusion correct. Countries which have granted same-sex marriages have yet collapse.
a) Parallels with womenâ€™s rights and interracial marriageâ€
It would seem that the arguments against same-sex marriage are very similar to the arguments made against womenâ€™s rights and interracial marriage. One of the opponents against interracial marriage in Alabama stated that â€œInterracial marriage is bad for our Southern culture.â€ (http://www.cnn.com/2000/ALLPOLITICS/...a.interracial/
It should be noted that some members of the House panel in Alabama reportedly balked at approving the interracial marriage bill until they were assured it would not open the door for homosexual marriages in the state. (http://www.cnn.com/US/9903/12/interr...age/index.html
Christian fundamentalist oppose and defeated the introduction of the Equal Rights Amendment to the US constitution as that would go against the â€˜traditional familyâ€™ structure of obedience and submission which would result in the further decline of Western Society.
b) Bad influence on Children argument
The argument that same-sex marriage would be a detriment on children betrays a sense that the person still operates on the notion that homosexuality is a disease that can be spread. Studies have shown that children raised by same-sexed parents are not maladjusted nor do they automatically become a homosexual. In fact same-sexed parents adopts children with disability at a higher rate and giving them a loving home, which detracts from the idea that somehow or other same-sex couples or marriage will result in the collapse of society.
c) Fine with Homosexuality but against same sex marriage argument
There are more â€œmoderateâ€ people who claim that they have no objections against homosexuality but are against same sex marriage. One must question whether have these people thought out their position or do they harbour thoughts against homosexuality. After all, if homosexuality is not a crime and there is nothing wrong with it then what is wrong with same-sexed marriage?
d) Same sexed marriage today, polygamy and incest tomorrow argument
Unlike same-sexed marriage, polygamy or other forms of more extreme examples such as incest can be shown to be actually detrimental. For example children of people who are closely related have a high chance of deformity.
3) Civil Union v Marriage
Marriage is not simply a nice ceremony and bouquet throwing but brings with a bag of legal rights.
a) â€œWhat is in a name?â€
Some opponents of same-sex marriage are willing to grant same-sex couples all the legal rights in a marriage but that it is to be considered as a civil union instead of a marriage. The Massachusetts court stated recently that â€œthe history of our nation has demonstrated that separate is seldom, if ever, equal.â€ If asking certain racial groups to move to the back of the bus is discriminatory despite the fact that all are offered public transport why is this any different.
b) â€œSacred and Specialâ€
It has been argued that marriage is sacred and special and that allowing same-sex marriage will destroy that. Again, such statements offer conclusions and no reasoning other than repeating the conclusion over and over again. How does allowing same-sex couple marry affect oneâ€™s marriage? If something such as same-sex marriage of another person can destroy oneâ€™s own marriage then that couple is facing a whole lot of other problems.
4) Religious rights does not act as a trump
As much as one should protect oneâ€™s freedom to religion, that right does not trump all other rights. The preamble of the Human Rights Charter promotes among other things equality but makes no specific reference to religion, thus suggesting that the dignity of each individual human being and their rights are of paramount importance and should not be abrogated.
a) Parallels with apartheid, gender and slavery:
In the past when South Africa was under apartheid, their government tried to justify their position based on their religious belief. Religion has also been used to discriminate against women.
Also slavery has been justified through the use of religion but that does not mean that religious rights should take precedence.
Genesis 9:24-25 Noah awakens from drunkenness and curses Ham that Canaan shall be a â€œservant of servantsâ€
Leviticus 25:44-46 God tell Moses that Hebrews should not sell their own brethren but should buy slaves â€œof the nations that are around you.â€
Alabama Senator argued that those bitter about slavery â€œare obviously bitter and hateful against God and his word, because they reject what God says and embrace what mere humans say concerning slaveryâ€ (Alabama House Candidate Quits After Slavery Defence, Washington Post, May 12, 1996)
The point is not whether such interpretation is â€˜correctâ€™ but rather the danger of promoting one set of religious belief over every single citizen.
After all if there is same-sexed marriage, it does not mean that every one must be forced to enter into same-sex marriage. No rights of the individual are lost if same-sex marriage came into being yet on the contrary a lot of people are affected not just in a theoretical â€œsacred and specialâ€ way but in a real way if same-sex marriage is banned.