The Civil Right of Marriage

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Why does anyone marry in this country? For most people, the answer is love. Offering to marry someone usually means that you truly love them, enough to stay with them forever (or at least a long time). It’s usually meant as the ultimate declaration of love. Also, on a practical level, there are other benefits. There can be reductions on taxes, and shared healthcare. Many people will say that marriage provides a safer home for children. If marriage is so beneficial to individuals, then why are so many people protesting against gay marriage? There is no logical reason, but many people have tried.

One of the arguments commonly used against gay marriage is that it weakens the definition of marriage. I ask why, if they’re so protective of the holy sanctity of marriage, they make more of a fuss about this then when a celebrity had a 55-hour marriage that was just for fun? And they seem to be ignoring the fact that 46% of marriages in the US result in divorces. If they wish to protect the value in marriage, perhaps they should start looking at that instead. Usually, gay couples that wish to marry would like to settle down together, in a serious relationship that could very well last for the rest of their lives. As long as you both shall live, indeed.

Another argument that seems to be popular is that marriages are for having children. What does this say about infertile heterosexual couples, and couples that are too old to have children? No one is telling them that they can’t marry. And then, look at this: Census estimate: “49.7 percent of households are married. Of those couples that are married, 21.4 percent have children under 18.”1 It would seem that their argument is invalid. Not everyone seems to be following their antiquated beliefs. That they argue against gay couples, and not these, hints strongly of hypocrisy.

One of the strangest arguments is that being around gay married couples will encourage children to be gay. I’m sorry, but I can’t help but to compare that to thinking that if you’re around tall people, you’ll become tall, too. All right, so maybe we don’t know everything about genes. Even so, it’s very likely that genetics play the largest part in your sexuality. Like LeVay, a British-American neuroscientist says, "...the scientific evidence presently available points to a strong influence of nature, and only a modest influence of nurture." However, you can be sure that if a gay couple adopts a child that’s gay, people will jump to that false accusation. Taking this even further, homophobic couples may blame homosexual couples in their environment if they discover that their child is gay.

These arguments, however, are sadly only used by the the people that actually try to justify their actions, or are motivated by fear. The main reason for the other people is solely because of their religion. They do not seem to comprehend that there is separation between the church and the state. If they won’t let gay couples marry in their churches, fine. That’s their religion, and other people can’t impose on them. They cannot, however, impose their religious beliefs upon couples that wish to have a state-sanctioned, nonreligious wedding.

Marriage is a civil right. To deny this freedom to anyone is discrimination, pure and simple. Should gay couples have to hide love, something that everyone seeks? As Louis J. Marinelli says, “They didn’t want to destroy American culture, they wanted to openly participate in it.”




1 From http://www.census.gov/





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fire_ice4ever This work has been published in the Teen Ink monthly print magazine. said...
May 24, 2011 at 8:18 pm

This was great! Very respectful to both sides and very well researched. I agree with you 100% I don't see the big deal is on this holy sanctum, Vegas shouldn't exist if that were the case. 

I love it! Deserves to be published!

 
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