Marriage Equality

My Thoughts on Marriage Equality

Many little girls dream of the day they’ll get married.  They take curtains or table cloths for veils and borrow a dress from mommy to playact the whole thing.  Plans are made and dresses are designed using crayons.  There are many different dreams, but one thing is the same for every one of these little girls: the whole thing is going to be just perfect.  When these little girls grow up, however, they find out all of their plans may be perfect, but the reality is not quite so simple.  All of those childhood plans do not prepare them for the reality which is the actual marriage itself.  This marriage will bring together two individuals and it’ll change their lives forever.  There’ll be irritation. There’ll be compromise.  There’ll be a learning period where they have to get used to having someone else in their space.  Despite these problems, there’ll be happiness and companionship which will make everything else pale in comparison.  Marriage is supposed to be this beautiful, wonderful thing every person should be allowed to be a part of.

There is only one problem with this.  Some couples who love each other and are committed to each other are not allowed to marry.  The laws which established marriage did not account for people of the same sex.  Marriage has been defined as between a man and a woman.  This law could simply be changed to accommodate gay couples, but there are many who have fought and are still fighting against allowing this to happen.  A change needs to be made to provide all people with the same rights.  People who are homosexual deserve the same basic, simple rights as everyone else.

There are those who would fight hard to keep same-sex marriage from happening.  Many of these people are religious, although not all are.  “It’s Adam and Eve, not Adam and Steve,” the opponents quip.  Religion has played a huge factor in keeping gay couples from tying the knot.  “It’s against my religion!!” has been repeated over and over again by Christians of a wide variety of denominations.  This argument is simple to refute.  There are no laws concerning marriage which dictate a couple must be religious in order to get married.  Athiests are allowed to get married all of the time.  Since this is the case, the argument using religion against same-sex marriage is actually just people hiding behind their bigotry and fear of things they do not like or understand.  If these Christians were really just trying to protect the sanctity of marriage, they might consider fighting against divorce instead of fighting against same-sex marriage.  In my opinion, Christians would fare better in the public if they focused on fighting for their own rights instead of fighting to keep others from rights they should have.

The nature argument is one of the most basic and repetitive arguments against same-sex marriage.  The truth is marriage is a societal institution.  The natural world didn’t create marriage, humans did.   As far as nature goes, there are animals all over the world which have same-sex tendencies.  Google it.  This is just one more proof the nature argument is invalid.  This argument seems to be more about the discomfort of homosexuality than the actual “nature” of it.

Many people say marriage is only for procreation.  This statement in itself does not consider people who can’t have kids or even people who don’t want to have them.  Does this mean a couple who has tried, but cannot have children should not be allowed to participate in an actual “marriage?”  With the world becoming more populated every day, gay couples not procreating might just be a good thing.  Also, if gay couples do not procreate, then they might be more willing to provide a loving home for unwanted or orphaned children all over the world.  Yes!  That’s awesome!  Procreation happens whether people are married or not.  This does not seem like a very strong argument to keep same-sex couples from getting married.

Another argument involves the fear of gay people redefining the institution of marriage.  There is a fear which once the definition of marriage starts being changed, still other couplings might be allowed to occur.  Marriage with animals, children, or even siblings is sure to follow if the sanctity of marriage is disrupted.  This argument seems to compare homosexuals to child molesters or zoophiliacs.  Rude!  Proof once again the people who fight against same-sex marriage fear what they do not understand.  Nor do they even try to understand it.  This is not some twisted form of love.  It is the love between two consenting adults.

Still more adversaries might mention allowing same-sex marriage would confuse and harm children.  Teaching children to love and respect each other seems to be a better choice than to teach them fear and bigotry.  Children will hate what they are taught to hate and, likewise, they will love what they are taught to love.  There is no good reason to keep children from learning there are other people who are like them and not to be afraid to be who they are.  There are too many kids out there who are killing themselves over this stuff.  Stop promoting fear and hate!

Some would argue gay couples are allowed civil unions, and that should be enough.  This is fine for some, but the problem with civil unions is that they don’t provide any federal rights.  A simple example of this is if a partner involved in a civil union was hospitalized, the other partner would have no right to be allowed in the room with their loved one.  They also would not be entitled to insurance benefits of their partner or medical decision-making.  These rights are all included in marriage.  These couples have every right to receive these same benefits.

There are many other arguments against same-sex marriage.  Each more implausible as the next.  It all comes down to whether people can come to grips with something they have feared in the past.  In this article entitled The Top 10 Arguments Against Gay Marriage:  All Receive Failing Grades!, the author makes a poignant statement saying,  “I urge all of those who oppose gay marriage to start focusing on their own lives, to accept that they don’t need to marry a person of the same sex, and to recognize the right of all Americans to be treated equally under the law:  ‘liberty and justice for all’ should not come with a disclaimer.”  Truer words have not been spoken.

Being gay is not a crime.  It is not a disease.  It’s life.  Maybe not your life, but other’s.  It is a right, not a privilege.  Groups such as some closed-minded Christians like to make these issues about choice or religion.  These Christian people have chosen to follow rules laid down in the Bible.  They have chosen to raise their children with certain beliefs and behaviors acceptable to them and their religion.  There is nothing wrong with them doing this.  Nothing.  It is their choice.  Some Christians believe gay people have chosen to be gay.  These same Christians believe this is against their Bible, and those who are gay are evil, wicked sinners.  {That’s fine if you believe that, but if you said that to someone every time you believed they were a sinner, you would still be standing in church talking to other Christians about all of their sin before you ever had time to leave and tell others not of your faith.}  Most gay people insist they are born gay and they have no choice in the matter.  Who are you to say otherwise?  Many have been discriminated against so much they have chosen to hide who they are.  There are some who have even tried to not be gay to keep from being persecuted by others.  This will ultimately fail because hiding who you really are is exhausting and misery in the making.  They should be able to be who they are.  They should not have to hide, be embarrassed, or even ridiculed.  The Bible teaches people about love, acceptance, and tolerance, and yet many Christians choose to ignore this and stand on what they consider their higher ground in the face of wickedness.  This exact attitude would be described as wickedness in their own Bible.  Technically, the part of the Bible that mentions one man lying with another man, in Leviticus 18:22, also includes in the next chapter, in Leviticus 19:19, not to mix wool fabric with other types of fabrics.  We move forward and progress.  Things aren’t as they were back then.  Although, there is a verse, in Leviticus 20:13, which condemns homosexuals to death, a few verses before this, in Leviticus 20:9, children who disobey their parents should also be condemned to death.  This is all in the Old Testament that also allowed a man to be stoned if he picked up a stick on the wrong day.  None of these things are followed today, so why put such emphasis on homosexuality?  There are no picketers shouting for their right to kill their child if he disobeys.  Doing this would be despicable.  The world has changed.  It is time to change with it.  You don’t have to agree with something to let it be.  Every Christian has the right to religious freedom.  Some choose to be more liberal or more conservative.  They have the right to believe whatever they want and to teach their children whatever they want.  They have the right to not like what people are doing around them.  That’s totally fine.  The problem comes from these groups trying to stop others from having those same freedoms.  Not everyone believes in the Bible.  Not everyone who believes in the Bible agrees with what is in the Bible or how it should be interpreted.  Separation of Church and State has been built on this principal for this reason.  There should not be one religion dictating what others are to believe.  There would never be an agreement of what that one religion would be anyway.  This is an issue of a simple basic right.  The gay/lesbian community is not out trying to invalidate heterosexual marriages.  They are not trying to raise themselves higher than those around them.  They don’t want to make your kids gay.  They just want to get married.

Although there has been fighting and dissension all throughout this marriage battle, there have been some successes.  On April 7, 2009, Vermont became the first state in the United States to legalize same-sex marriages.  Maine followed their example a month later.  Four years later, there are now 13 states in the United States that have legalized same-sex marriage.  The states with the law already in effect are:  California, Connecticut, Delaware, Iowa, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, New York, Vermont, and Washington.  Minnesota and Rhode Island have also legalized same-sex marriage which goes into effect on August 1, 2013.  While this is all very exciting news for the gay/lesbian community, there are still so many hurdles that they face.  Also, many groups are still trying to reverse the laws in the states which have already legalized gay marriage and to keep the rest from following suit.

Just last year, on June 26, 2013, the Supreme Court ruled against DOMA which is the Defense of Marriage Act.  They decided it was against the rights of same-sex marriages.  They also dismissed a case in California that was trying to ban the already allowed same-sex marriages.  DOMA was created in 1996, responding to criticism of the growing gay/lesbian community.  Section three of DOMA says the word “marriage” only includes the legal union of a man and a woman and the word “spouse” would only refer to a person of the opposite sex.  On June 26, 2013, this small section was deemed unconstitutional by the Supreme Court.  This is exciting news for same-sex couples because now their union can be called a marriage.  DOMA “undermines” same-sex marriages in visible ways and tells those couples, and all the world, that their otherwise valid marriages are unworthy of federal recognition.  For now, the issue of marriage equality is back in the hands of the States.  It is up to each state to allow same-sex marriages to exist.  There is still a long way to go for the gay/lesbian community.

“Love is patient, love is kind.  It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud.  It does not dishonor others, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs.  Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth.  It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres.  Love never fails” 1 Cor. 13:4-8ish.  This is such a beautiful sentiment.  Love is what marriage is supposed to be about, not gender.  Choosing to love and be committed to one person is a huge step.  This should not be hampered because the world is not sure about someone’s sexual preferences.  Love is the most important thing there is.  It makes everyone equal.

There are too many things which are truly wrong and hurtful in this world.  There is hunger, famine, disease, and war.  The list goes on and on.  There’s no reason why marriage equality should be a part of this list.  Why is this still an issue?  Every day, people live their lives and most don’t stop doing what they are doing because of what their neighbor might think.  And yet, there are people out there who just can’t let this be.  There are groups who want everyone to live the way they live.  It’s not just religious groups, but people who just don’t understand the life style choice.  These groups hide behind the guise of making the world a better place.  {Letting people live their lives would make this world a better place.  Leaving each other alone would make this world a better place.  Letting go of hatred would make this world a freaking better place.}   The problem with this is everyone’s opinion on what would make the world a better place seems to differ greatly.  Someone’s rights should not be denied or neglected because of the beliefs of others.  Wanting to marry someone of the same sex is a simple and beautiful thing which has been turned into something ugly and disgraceful.  Marriage has always been about love and the joining of two people in that love.  Anyone who is able and wants to should be allowed this simple and basic right.

People are just not going to agree on most things {let alone the important stuff}.  What is important to one person, might not be important to someone else.  The most irritating thing about this whole same-sex marriage debacle is it doesn’t even really affect the people who are fighting it.  They might think so.  They might sincerely think they are doing the right thing by keeping same-sex couples from marriage.  This is so sad.  This fear and bigotry has been involved in the history of mankind for a long, long time.  After same-sex marriage is accepted and constitutional for all {and that will happen}, there will just be some different group of people to fear and try to repress.  Look at the past.  There was a time in the United States of America that the color of a person’s skin made some not equal.  This is still the case in many places, but the focus has changed, not the actual issue of equality for all.  It would be lovely if everyone could just let each other be happy.  If people can learn to see the differences in others and accept them then this might just happen one day.

Here is the simplicity of it all.  Not one single person is being asked to become homosexual.  If someone does not like it, they do not have to participate in it.  The people fighting for gay rights are not trying to take away anyone else’s rights.  They just want their own rights like everyone else.  Homosexual people just want to marry who they want.  It’s time they are allowed to do so.  Marriage equality will happen.  The question is “When?”  When will people just learn to live and let live?  When will love and understanding count above all else?  As long as human kind looks for the faults and differences of others, they will find them.  They will use these differences to start wars and to promote hate in the disguise of religion, honor, or justice.  Differences in people should not be an excuse to cause separation and take away rights from others.   It’s time that human kind realizes there is enough war and hate.  All we need is love.

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2 thoughts on “Marriage Equality

  1. Pingback: (Lack of) Equality | It's Mayur Remember?

  2. Pingback: The Agenda | losing my {reli}ginity

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