Legalizing Same-Sex Marriage Essay

Submitted By rtk7012
Words: 2593
Pages: 11

I am studying same-sex marriage while using the history, legal situations, biological research, and Christian scriptural context relating to same-sex marriage as a lens to find out why Americans oppose same sex marriage. In doing so I will help my reader better understand why same-sex marriage should be legal. The saying, “never judge a book by its cover” is a saying that most mothers have used. Therefore when it comes to the topic of same-sex marriage, my mother always judged the book by its cover. Being that I was raised in a heavily Christian structured home, I had a bias opinion when it came to the topic of same-sex marriage. The debate over whether or not people in same sex relationships should be allowed to marry, or even enter into civil unions, is not a new fight. Homosexuality is an accepted lifestyle in today’s society with most evidence proving biological causation. Marriage is defined as a social union or legal contract between people, called spouses, creating a kinship, according to The Webster Dictionary. The definition of marriage varies depending on the culture and religion, but all marriages are acknowledged as intimate and sexual. People marry for many reasons. Some of these reasons being for legal or social purposes as well as love, emotional and financial reasons, the desire for a family, spiritual and religious reasons are also others. Out of all the wonderful things listed, marriage creates legal obligations between the individuals involved. On the other hand, civil unions are a relationship between couples that is legally recognized by a governmental system. Essentially, civil unions are very similar to a marriage but without the actual word marriage attached to it. As well as the difference in the way the government perceives and handles a civil union, in comparison to a marriage.
Same-sex encounters are seen as far back to ancient Rome, more specifically, the word “lesbian” comes from the Greek word “Lesbos”. Lesbos was the name of a Greek island where lesbians, of that time, lived and formed a functioning society. Marcus Valerius Martial, the greatest epigrammatist in Latin Literature, gives records of the sexual life of the ancient world by giving details of homosexual encounters (Dynes 768). With that, one can see that homosexuality has been around a long time in fact relationships between same-sex couples have also been documented in the past. America, What the hold up? For many countries like Canada, Belgium, Spain, and South Africa, to name a few, the idea of same-sex marriages is nothing new. The Netherlands has allowed same-sex marriage for over a decade, having legalized it in 2001 (Johnson 15). When given all of this insight on the history of same-sex relationships, why are Americans still in dispute with an act that has been on going before the United States was ever colonized? Could this be due to our country being founded on Judeo-Christian principles or could it be that we want society they way we want it?
Not only is there historical evidence on homosexual relationships, but there are judicial encounters, as well. Same-sex relationships has raised eyebrows in our judicial system with two Supreme Court decisions involving gay rights, one decade apart has left a lot of people wondering just where the law stands when it comes to the right to engage in homosexual activities. The Court first considered the matter in the 1986 case of Bowers v. Hardwick, a challenge to a Georgia law authorizing penalties for persons found guilty of sodomy. Sodomy is oral or anal sex performed homosexually or heterosexually. The Georgia law of sodomy applied to both heterosexual and homosexual sodomy. The Supreme Court chose to consider only the constitutionality of applying the law only to homosexual sodomy. Michael Hardwick was charged with sodomy, after a police officer discovered him in bed with another man in the privacy of his own home. Secondly in 2003, the Supreme Court of Texas was challenged