Religion's Influence In Society And Government

1555 words - 6 pages

Over the course of American history, marriage has evolved from the traditional, Christian ideology of marriage into accepting civil unions and civil partnerships. America was founded on the principles of Christianity and Puritan ideals. For example, our forefathers came to America to seek religious toleration, in land not yet claimed by the European world. The American government was supposed to be established sans religious virtues and values, giving the people the ability to dictate their religious values; nonetheless, over the last 300 years, the idea of marriage in the eyes of the average American has gradually changed from social union to carrying a religious and social connotation.
Marriage has been the social agreement that has provided organization and meaning to people’s lives. Throughout most of America’s history, religion has influenced most of its laws and policies. Even though, religion and state are constitutionally separate, politicians still tend to use religious influence to make policies and laws. For example, issues on abortion and the death penalty debates have been influenced by religious institutions. According to religious connotations, marriage is defined as the socially legalized union between heterosexual couples, comprised of a man and a woman, which in the future will procreate and raise a family. In addition, the president of the Massachusetts Family Institute, said, “marriage is based on the fact that all human beings from conception have, in every cell of their bodies, whether XX (female) or XY (male), even a sex-change operation and hormone treatments cannot change those chromosomes (Jost 2003).
Because religion is engraved into American society, many Americans consider marriage a social norm; some people have become upset that more liberal people who want to overthrow traditional marriage. In religious institutions, marriage is considered to be a central point of family development. In addition, society has adopted religion as their outline to how to live their lives because this many citizens, in American society, are disturbed by the idea that traditional marriage is going to be destroyed and replaced by a new system that is not familiar to society. According to Paul Amato’s book Alone Together: How Marriage in America is Changing, “religion is often seen as a set of deeply personal beliefs, but religion also has a social dimension. Like most sociologists, we see religion as an institution that brings like-minded people together can creates communities of believers. Religious participation can be viewed as a form of social integration. Finally, the norm of lifelong marriage refers to spouses’ bonds with one another—bonds that expected to persist even when spouses are dissatisfied with their relationships” (Amato, Booth, Johnson, and Rogers 175).
On the other hand, civil partnership, sometimes known as civil union, is a form of partnership between two same-sex individuals that is similar to marriage (Browne...

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