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Breakign The Barriers
Two men go to apply for marriage at the same time. Both have been with their partner for over twenty years, yet they are both denied. You may now be asking yourself why? Why would two people who obviously loved their partners after being with them for so long be denied the right to get married? Well the reason is the two men were applying for marriage with each other.
Ronald Seigmund and Robert Lawrence, both long time gay rights activists knew they would be denied the right of marriage, but they also knew that they would get publicity for gay rights if they claimed to be denied the right of marriage because of discrimination against homosexuals. Soon after these claims they got what they had counted on, publicity. They were on T.V. speaking about gay rights and discrimination. Many people recognized them when they went out in public, and many respected them for standing up for what they believed in and supported their opinions. Others had quite the opposite reaction; they spat on the men calling them faggots and sometimes even threatening them. The men actually got death threats on their phone saying that people were going to kill them. This is unfair to the men, and any other homosexuals. Their reasons for wanting to be married are simple; they want the same rights as everyone else, such as full pension, health care benefits, and a say in their partner’s medical treatment if for some reason that person couldn’t speak for themselves. Siegmund once said, “Nothing we are asking for is going to change anything for anyone else.”
The law, called “Don’t ask, don’t tell”, bans members of the military who are gay or lesbian from serving openly, but Obama is trying to change this law. He said that, “The don’t, ask don’t tell law is just wrong.” Republicans, who are generally against gay rights or marriage, are against the removal of this law. They think that the war, not this one law, should be focused on. Some people believe that not allowing people to be openly gay or lesbian in the military is a denial of civil rights. As some say, “Gays and lesbians served honorably and valiantly, so what is the big deal.” Why should they have to cast a shadow over who they really are?
Many same sex unions promote the same ideas as conservatives, yet they are still discriminated against because of their drastically different lifestyles. Homosexuality has been condemned by Catholics. They say that a couple should consist of a man and a woman, as that’s how God wanted it. Many Catholic adoption agencies have even shut down because state law states that they must allow homosexuals to adopt a child if they wish, and Catholics disagree. Not all catholics have this opinion though. Doug Paul was raised in a very strict Catholic family, but he has now taken a stance as a supporter of homosexuals, despite his parents beliefs, and the judgement of many other Catholics, and he still practices the Catholic religion.
The human rights acts forbids discrimination based on peoples sexuality, yet there are laws banning marriage for certain people but not others. Courts have decided that the human rights act does not protect the marriage of homosexuals, but isn’t that discrimination in itself? Civil rights have often been used as back up for supporters of gay marriage and gay rights. As the fourteenth amendment states, “No state shall deprive any person of life, liberty, of prosperity..... nor deny to any person the equal protection of the laws.”
Opponents of same sex marriage are worried that gay and straight relationships will be taught as equal in schools, but to teach them as unequal would be unfair. They also say that children are best raised when raised by both their biological parents, but when children are being raised in foster families, adoptive families, by single parents, or their parents are divorced, nobody was speaking out against that. Is that wrong now too? Or, is it better to be raised by your biological parents and to be abused, than to be raised by homosexual parents who love and want you? Kasey Nicholson-McFadden, a ten year old girl said, “It doesn’t bother me to tell people that my parents are gay, it does bother me to say they aren’t married. It makes me feel that our family is less than their family.” Now an adult, Ms. Connolly Ingram said, “As a daughter of lesbian moms I know that children are affected by this decision.”
We are all very aware that African Americans have suffered greatly and have not always been treated equally or had equal rights to whites, only 26% of African Americans throughout the nation support legalized gay marriage. So they can have equal rights to whites, but homosexuals can’t have equal rights as them? It seems sad that they can discriminate against others who are different after all the suffering they have been through.
Although there are many opponents to gay marriage, there are people out there who want to help. Nevertheless some people have referred to homosexuals as “it”, but supporters bounced right back saying that was “demeaning, insulting, and dehumanizing.” But the battle still continued with opponents saying that equal rights for homosexuals was “freaky and bizarre”. Martha Jane Kaufman said, “ We grew up recognizing our families as families whether or not the government did and we’re frustrated by the suggestion that we should have to make our families look like straight ones in order to be considered a valid family by the government.” Call your local senator, or congressmen, and tell them this law should be brought back to the table because no matter what others say there will never be change unless we heed Obama’s call to, “Be the change we seek”.
Fetner, Chip, et al. “Maine Voters Send Clear Message On Marriage.” USA Today.
November, 2009, p. 10a.
Dokoupil, Tony. “Faith Beyond His Fathers.” Newsweek. January, 2009, p. 72-75.
Armour, Stephanie. “Gay Unions ay Affect Benefits.” USA Today. March, 2004, p. 3b.
Farrell, Micheal. “Gay Marriage Vote Would Violate Human Rights Act.” Christian
Science Monitor. January, 2010, p. 1p
Bergman, Brian. “Why Should We Have To Call It Something Else?.” Macleans.
2003, p. 33p.
Bumiller, Elisabeth, “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell Hearing Set Obama Told Pentagon Officials
Law Banning Gays Was Just Wrong.” Pittsburgh Post - Gazette. February,
2010, p. A.4.
Freeman, Sholnn, “Supervisor Rebuked For Anti-Gay Remarks; Colleagues Chastise Delgaudio
Words ‘An embarrassment to this board and to the county.” The Washington Post.
January, 2010, p.T.1.
Parker, Kathleen, “The Most Relevant Question? Don’t Ask.” Tulsa World. February, 2010, p. A.
Stone, Mathew, “Panels Focus: Sexual Bias In Schools; A State Agency Will Provide Guidance
On Issues Such As Accommodations For Transgender Students.” Portland Press Herald.
January, 2010, p. B.1.
Wildman, Sarah, “Children Speak For Same-Sex Marriage.” The New York Times. January,
Olson, Theodore, “The Conservative Case For Gay Marriage.” News Week. January, 2010, p.