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Gay Rights Essay

3410 words - 14 pages

22 October 2014
Pols 1101
Carter

Gay marriage is a topic I am particularly fond of; gay marriage is a subject that is highly debated and appears to be unsolvable. Gay rights groups are fighting for rights and religious groups are fighting against gay marriage. I do not believe it is fair to discriminate against gays for being together. America is a free country and people should be able to be in a relationship with whomever they desire. Gay marriage is only legal in a few states. In some of these states, the uniting of two gays is called a civil union or domestic partnership. I do not think it is right to ruin the holy sacrament of marriage many do believe a domestic partnership is the ...view middle of the document...

People who acknowledge same-sex relationships believe they should have access to the same benefits enjoyed by heterosexual married couples. Many benefits are only available to married couples, such as hospital visitation during an illness, taxation and inheritance rights, and access to family health coverage, and protection in the event of the relationship ending.
Marriage is redefined as society's attitudes evolve, and the majority of Americans now support gay marriage. Interracial marriage was illegal in many US states until a 1967 Supreme Court decision. Coverture, where a woman's legal rights and economic identity were subsumed by her husband upon marriage, was commonplace in 19th century America. No-fault divorce has changed the institution of marriage since its introduction in California on Jan. 1, 1970. With a May 2013 Gallup poll showing 53% of Americans supporting gay marriage, it is time for the definition of marriage to evolve once again. Gay marriage is protected by the Constitution's commitments to liberty and equality. The US Supreme Court ruled in 1974’s Cleveland Board of Education v. LaFleur that the "freedom of personal choice in matters of marriage and family life is one of the liberties protected by the Due Process Clause.
Denying same-sex couples the right to marry stigmatizes gay and lesbian families as inferior and sends the message that it is acceptable to discriminate against them. The Massachusetts Supreme Court wrote in an opinion to the state Senate on Feb. 3, 2004 that offering civil unions was not an acceptable alternative to gay marriage because "...it is a considered choice of language that reflects a demonstrable assigning of same-sex, largely homosexual, couples to second-class status."Gay marriages can bring financial gain to state and local governments. Revenue from gay marriage comes from marriage licenses, higher income taxes (the so-called "marriage penalty"), and decreases in costs for state benefit programs. The Comptroller for New York City found that legalizing gay marriage would bring $142 million to the city’s economy and $184 million to the state’s economy over three years.
Gay marriage would make it easier for same-sex couples to adopt, providing stable homes for children who would otherwise be left in foster care. In the US, 100,000 children are waiting to be adopted. A longitudinal study published in Pediatrics on June 7, 2010 found that children of lesbian mothers were rated higher than children of heterosexual parents in social and academic competence and had fewer social problems. A July 2010 study found that children of gay fathers were "as well-adjusted as those adopted by heterosexual parents." As Washington Post columnist Ezra Klein argues, "We should be begging gay couples to adopt children. We should see this as a great boon that gay marriage could bring to kids who need nothing more than two loving parents. Marriage provides both physical and psychological health benefits, and...

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