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Same Sex Marriage: Church Vs. State Essay

2238 words - 9 pages

Same-sex marriage is a debated subject throughout the Church, as well as the state. There are two different sides surrounding this debate; one side dealing with a religious view and the other with the state (Constitution). In the United States, laws dealing with marriage are ratified by each state, not by the federal government as a whole. Yet, marriage is viewed differently through the eyes of religion. Each religion has its own views about same-sex marriage. For example, the Roman Catholic Church undeniably opposes same-sex marriage; Pope Francis said, “Marriage is between a man and a woman.” Yet he continues by saying, "We have to look at different cases and evaluate them in their variety" (Burke). The Church under no circumstance condones same-sex marriage, however Pope Francis does not say that the people contributing to this lifestyle will go to hell. The answer to this debate is to legalize same-sex marriage under the Constitution, yet not be accepted by the Roman Catholic Church. In other words, have the government legalize same-sex marriage, since there is no purpose or religious affiliation not to, but have the Church remain against it, as it always has been.
The first laws that were passed enabling same-sex couples to marry began in the early 21st century. The first state within the United States to legalize same-sex marriage was Massachusetts. After a ruling in a case named Goodridge vs. Department of Public Health, the Massachusetts Constitution found that allowing only couples of the opposite sex to marry was unconstitutional.
In 1970, another keen case named Baker vs. Nelson occurred. In this particular incident, two students from the University of Minnesota, Richard John Baker and James Michael McConnell, applied to Hennepin County District Court for a marriage license. Yet, they were denied by the clerk, Gerald Nelson “because the applicants both were men” (Gay Marriage Timeline). The two men then took Nelson to court where the court ruled that the clerk should not issue the marriage license. They then took their case to the Minnesota Supreme Judicial Court where the court prohibited marriage between two people of the same-sex. Lastly, the men took their case to be appealed to the United States Supreme Court, where the appeal was yet again denied and dismissed. This case exemplifies one of the many problems we face today with same-sex marriage, which is what is the true definition of marriage, as well as what should be accepted and what should not?
In the book Debating Same-Sex Marriage the authors, John Corvino and Maggie Gallagher clearly exemplify the debate of same-sex marriage when they said, “The debated over same-sex marriage has been frequently vigorous occasionally strident, and sometimes downright hostile. It touches upon deep human longings and convictions; it affects real individuals and families. The controversy is unlikely to subside anytime soon” (3). This quote illustrates what the debate...

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