Same Sex Marriage Essay

1744 words - 7 pages

For over four hundred years, African Americans have faced discrimination in the United States, and it took them more than ten years to find some sort of equality. Women have also faced discrimination for hundreds of years and it took them over fifty years to earn minimal rights. While the issue of homosexuality is relatively new to our country, the fight for rights started almost immediately, and people today are still struggling to earn civil liberties, like same-sex marriage. If some change isn’t made now, their struggle for rights could last even longer than other minorities have endured. Since there is no national ruling made to abolish same-sex marriage, each state sets its own laws regarding gay marriage. Currently in the US, five states allow same-sex marriage, several states offer civil unions, and the large majority of states ban same-sex marriage. Today, several groups, including Conservatives and Christians, are fighting against gay marriage, citing bible verses and their own personal beliefs as their arguments. The gay community and many socially liberal Americans are joining together to fight back and defend themselves in the search for equality. The United States should implement a national law allowing same-sex marriage to all gay couples, because it will ensure natural rights for all Americans, establish and preserve equality among all citizens, and help to end discrimination against gay Americans.
The lack of any laws allowing same-sex marriage is permitting marriage and certain rights to heterosexual couples and forbidding these rights to homosexual couples. In 1996, Congress passed the Defense of Marriage Act that defined marriage as a legal union between one man and one woman (Wolfson). Couples involving one man and one woman now have more rights than couples involving two members of the same sex, ultimately earning more opportunities. For one person to have further rights and opportunities than another, based solely on who they are married to, is unconstitutional and immoral. Legal rights that gay couples are being denied, since they cannot be formally married, include joint parenting and adoption, joint insurance policies and leases, the ability to be stated as next-of-kin, divorce protections, employment benefits, and policies involving inheritances, among many others (Robinson). So now, not only are laws prohibiting same-sex marriage denying a gay couple from officially expressing their love, they are also making it harder to adopt a child or to receive medical benefits. US Senator Chris Dodd feels that marriage should be about rights and responsibilities, and mostly love, and believes for these reasons, every American should have an equal opportunity to marry (Dodd). Our country stands as a nation that protects minorities and offers equal benefits, but something as simple as a piece of paper that declares a marriage between a couple is not being allowed to gay couples, one of our nation’s highly significant and quickly...

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