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Dr. Lisa Lawless, CEO of Holistic Wisdom
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Essential Civil Rights
Despite being legal, there are those that stand against same-sex marriage. This article outlines common disputes and addresses many of the arguments against it.
What Is Marriage?
Marriage is a powerful legal and social institution that protects and supports intimate family relationships by providing a unique set of rights, privileges, and benefits. Those who can marry often take these rights for granted, but these benefits were unfairly denied for gay and lesbian people until 2015 when The US Supreme Court made same-sex marriages legal in all 50 states.
If you take what the scripture of the bible says, then you would also have to abide by the following rules:
- Marriage shall consist of a union between one man and one or more women. (Gen 29:17-28; II Sam 3:2-5.)
- Marriage shall not impede a man's right to take concubines in addition to his wife or wives. (II Sam 5:13; I Kings 11:3; II Chron 11:21)
- A marriage shall be considered valid only if the wife is a virgin. If the wife is not a virgin, she shall be executed. (Deut 22:13-21)
- Marriage of a believer and a nonbeliever shall be forbidden (Gen 24:3; Num 25:1-9; Ezra 9:12; Neh 10:30)
- Since marriage is for life, neither the US Constitution nor any state law shall permit divorce based on: Deut 22:19; Mark 10:9-12
- If a married man dies without children, his brother must marry the widow. If the brother refuses to marry the widow or deliberately does not give her children, he shall pay a fine of one shoe and be otherwise punished in a manner to be determined by law. (Gen. 38:6-10;Deut 25:5-10)
- In lieu of marriage (if there are no acceptable men to be found), a woman shall get her father drunk and have sex with him. (Gen 19:31-36)
Marriage Is An Institution Between A Man And A Woman
This is the most often heard argument against same-sex marriage, yet it is easily one of the weakest arguments. Who is marriage to be defined by? Isn't this whole debate like allowing a particular ethnic group to be married, but another not to be because of religious reasons? Isn't our country supposed to protect our civil rights and not allow any religion to supersede our rights? Can you imagine how Christians would react if the government were trying to impose Pagan or Jewish marriage ceremonies to be required by law to be valid?
While religions should be allowed to have their beliefs, they should not impose them as law in the United States. Our country stands for freedom, and to have the audacity to say to the world that our country stands for freedom only when it adheres to certain religious beliefs is the opposite of freedom.
Marriage Is For Procreation
If that's the case, why are infertile couples allowed to marry? Try to explain to a menopausal mother or father with erectile dysfunction (ED) that since they cannot procreate, they cannot marry. Such an argument fails to persuade based on the marriages society does allow routinely.
Same-Sex Couples Should Not Raise Children
In light of who society does allow to get married and bring children into their marriage: murderers, convicted felons, and known child molesters are all allowed to marry and procreate freely and do so every day. So if children are the priority here, why is this allowed?
The fact is that many same-sex couples raise children who are adopted, born through artificial fertilization, or from failed attempts at heterosexual marriages. Many studies have demonstrated that the outcomes of children raised in gay and lesbian homes are just as healthy as those of straight couples. Psychologists tell us that what makes the difference is the love of the parents, not their gender. These studies show that gay and lesbian people are just as capable of loving and caring for children as much as anyone else.
Gay Relationships Are Immoral
According to whom? When it comes to the law, freedom of religion implies the right to freedom from religion. The bible should have absolutely no standing in American law as it defies our constitutional rights.
It is also important to remember that not all world religions have a problem with homosexuality. Buddhism, for example, celebrates gay relationships. In this regard, the religious freedom of Buddhist people is being infringed upon. If one believes in religious freedom, then it must be acknowledged that homosexual marriage is one of those freedoms.
Marriages Are For Ensuring The Continuation Of The Species
Considering that the earth has overpopulated right now. Not to mention that this would contradict the argument that same-sex couples should not have children.
Same-Sex Marriage Would Threaten The Institution Of Marriage
If you allow same-sex partners to marry one another, you no longer encourage them to marry people to whom they feel little attraction, which in turn will lower divorce rates. If anything, same-sex marriage will help increase the longevity of heterosexual marriage. Not once has the legalization of same-sex marriage in any state affected anyone's marriage.
Marriage Is Traditionally A Heterosexual Institution
Slavery was also a traditional institution. Enough said.
Same-Sex Marriage Doesn't Work
Prior to the US legalizing same-sex marriage, it was legal in Denmark since 1989, and the rest of Scandinavia soon followed. The results were positive. When the law was being debated, 72 percent of the Danish clergy opposed it. A 1995 survey showed that 89 percent of the Danish clergy now admit that the law is good. There has been a reduction in suicide, the spread of sexually transmitted diseases, promiscuity, and infidelity.
Same-Sex Marriage Will Lead To Legalized Incest, Bestiality, etc.
This is no different than claiming that heterosexuals may start practicing incest or having sex with animals if they don't get married. Convicted murderers, child molesters, pedophiles, drug dealers, etc., are all free to marry. Where's the outrage about that? This is a bigoted anti-homosexual argument and not a pro-marriage one.
Granting Homosexuals The Right To Marry Is A Special Right
That is like saying that allowing African Americans to sit at the front of the bus is a special right. As Justice Kennedy observed in his opinion overturning Colorado's infamous Amendment 2 (Roemer vs. Evans), many gay and lesbian Americans are, under current law, denied civil rights protection that others either don't need or assume that everyone else along with themselves, already have.
The problem with all this "special rights" talk is that it assumes that everyone is already treated equally; therefore, any rights LGBT+ people are granted must consequently be special. That is most assuredly not the case.
Sodomy Is Illegal
It's not anymore, nor should it have been; in November 2003, the Supreme Court voted that "The petitioners are entitled to respect for their private lives," Justice Anthony Kennedy wrote for the court's majority. "The state cannot demean their existence or control their destiny by making their private sexual conduct a crime."
Why People Oppose Same-Sex Marriage
So far, we've examined the reasons everyone gives for opposing same-sex marriage. Let's examine how the real reasons people oppose and fear it:
Not Comfortable With The Idea Of It
We all have the right not to be comfortable with things. However, if you live in a country where you are comfortable with everything, then you probably aren't living in a free democracy. That is part of the compromise of freedom. There will be things that make some people uncomfortable with what you believe and how you live. That's the deal.
It Offends Everything Religion Represents
Whose religion? Many mainstream Christian denominations, to be sure, and most branches of Islam and Orthodox Judaism, but outside those, most beliefs are unopposed to same-sex marriage, and many favor it. When the Mormon church arrogantly claimed to represent all religions in the Baehr vs. Lewin trial in Hawaii, the principal Buddhist sect in that state made it very clear that the Mormon church didn't represent them and that they supported the right of same-sex couples to marry. Religious freedom does not just mean the right to worship with your choice of religion, but also freedom from religion.
Marriage Is A Sacred Institution
Who says? This is based on the assumption that the state has the responsibility to 'sanctify' marriages, a fundamentally religious idea. Here we're dealing with people trying to enforce their religious doctrines onto everyone, but by doing it through weakening the separation of church and state, thus undermining the Bill of Rights.
Homosexual Sex Is Unnatural
Nature reveals that 450 animal species demonstrate homosexual behavior, ranging from displays of affection to lifelong bonding, including sex, and even adopting and raising orphans. Nature demonstrates that this is indeed natural.
Sex With Two Men Is Not Masculine
Just as there are effeminate gay men, there are effeminate straight men. There are also masculine lesbians and masculine straight women. The point is that we all possess masculine and feminine attributes.
Homosexuals Might Recruit
This is because most heterosexuals are so repressed, confused, and uneducated about their sexuality that they feel scared when presented with something out of their comfort zone. This is incredibly hypocritical when it is brought up by religious fundamentalists who often try and recruit people into their religion through missionary work or convert homosexuals through conversion therapy. Heterosexuals try and recruit homosexuals all the time.
Why Was It A Civil Rights Issue?
Without legalized marriage for same-sex couples they would not have the following rights offered to heterosexual couples:
- Accidental death benefit for the surviving spouse of a government employee.
- Appointment as guardian of a minor.
- Award of child custody in divorce proceedings.
- Beneficial owner status of corporate securities.
- Bill of Rights benefits for victims and witnesses.
- Burial of service member's dependents.
- Certificates of occupation.
- Consent to post-mortem examination.
- Continuation of rights under existing homestead leases.
- Control, division, acquisition, and disposition of community property.
- Criminal injuries compensation.
- Death benefit for surviving spouse for government employee.
- Disclosure of vital statistics records.
- Division of property after dissolution of marriage.
- Eligibility for housing opportunity allowance program of the Housing, Finance and Development Corporation.
- Exemption from claims of the Department of Human Services for social services payments, financial assistance, or burial payments.
- Exemption from conveyance tax.
- Exemption from regulation of condominium sales to owner-occupants.
- Funeral leave for government employees.
- Homes of totally disabled veterans are exempt from property taxes.
- Income tax deductions, credits, rates exemption, and estimates.
- Inheritance of land patents.
- Insurance licenses, coverage, eligibility, and benefits organization of mutual benefits society.
- Legal status with partner's children.
- Making, revoking, and objecting to anatomical gifts.
- Making partner medical decisions.
- Nonresident tuition differential waiver.
- Notice of guardian ad litem proceedings.
- Notice of probate proceedings.
- Payment of wages to a relative of deceased employee.
- Payment of worker's compensation benefits after death.
- Permission to make arrangements for burial or cremation.
- Proof of business partnership.
- Public assistance from the Department of Human Services.
- Qualification at a facility for the elderly.
- Real property exemption from attachment or execution.
- Right of survivorship to custodial trust.
- Right to be notified of parole or escape of an inmate.
- Right to change names.
- Right to enter into a premarital agreement.
- Right to file an action for nonsupport.
- Right to inherit property.
- Right to purchase leases and cash freehold agreements concerning the management and disposition of public land.
- Right to sue for tort and death by wrongful act.
- Right to support after divorce.
- Right to support from a spouse.
- Rights and proceedings for involuntary hospitalization and treatment.
- Rights by way of dour or courtesy.
- Rights to notice, protection, benefits, and inheritance under the uniform probate code.
- Sole interest in a property.
- Spousal privilege and confidential marriage communications.
- Spousal immigration benefits.
- Status of children.
- Support payments in a divorce action.
- Tax relief for natural disaster losses.
- Vacation allowance on termination of public employment by death.
- Veterans' preference to a spouse in public employment.
- In vitro fertilization coverage.
- Waiver of fees for certified copies and searches of vital statistics.