Free Argumentative Essay On Should There Be A Constitutional Amendment That Allows Gays And Lesbians To Legally Marry?
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When the United State constitution was first written and promulgated to govern the affairs of the country, the family values were based on the Christian faith which emphasize on one husband and one wife. This was the basic definition of the family at that time. A man and woman form a family with their sired children. This is what constituted a family at that time. There was no room left for two male or two female and their adopted children could form a family. The writers of the constitution were guarded by the common biblical notion that a man after leaving his childhood home, he will meet a beautiful lady in the streets of the United State and fall in love. The two shall become one after successful a white wedding approved by the society and the church. The two shall make a beautiful family and make everyone in the society happy by living according to the norms and regulations of the society. The man was not expected to get a second wife as this will be against the law of the society. This is what the writers of the constitution had in mind at the time they were busy making the laws of this great nation. The writers of the constitution stipulated every household is made of husband, wife and the children. The constitution did not leave room for any other formation of the family unit. Any formation apart from the nuclear family made of father, mother and children, according to the constitution is null and void (Weston, 2013) The constitution did not leave room for future amendments in case the family unit at that time did not fit well with everyone in the society or give freedom to citizens to decide the kind of family formation they want when they want to settle down and start a family. As per the constitution, these other formations are illegal and cannot enjoy the rights and privileges allocated to marriages by the constitution (Cox, 2013). In addition, the second wife or the second husband (if woman married by two husband at the same time) are not recognized by the constitution. The constitution only recognized the first wife; when the man has sired a baby with the second wife. It is common to find court cases where second wife are fighting for recognition in their own country. But, the constitution fails to recognize them and many have loss the court cases due to unfairness of the constitutions. The only benefit they can get from the constitution is child support not recognition as second wife.
The constitution has remained static when it comes to marriage. This has cause, many people who are not subscribe to the “constitution marriage” to remain in hiding since any marriage apart from the one in the constitution is term as taboo or illegal. However, the world is changing and people are now discovering themselves better. People are now in a better position to define their feelings and what they desire in life. Thus, there is need for the constitution to change with time also. The constitution is still stack in the 1700s when man could not tell what his/her body needs were or desire in life (Cox, 2013). At this time, man was governed by the religious books and the constitution. But, those days are long gone and the constitution needs to embrace the new society which know its rights and can distinguish constitution rights and constitution discrimination. Thus, there need to change the constitution to accommodate everyone in the society.
The gay and the lesbians need recognition by the constitution since they have a right like any other citizen in the United State. The gays and lesbians are normal people who contribute to the growth and prosperity of this country. They have dedicated their effort and professionalism in various capacities within the government to make sure the ideal which are stipulated in the constitution are achieved. Through, their effort they deserve a place in the constitution since they have invested dearly in this country to make sure the every citizen enjoys the rights which are in the constitution. Therefore, the constitution and the rest of the country cannot turn its back on gay and lesbian on this issue of marriage since it is their main right and privilege which they have been denied (Cox, 2013). Although, the constitution claim everyone is equal in the United State some quotas of the society appear to me more equal than others. Thus, it is the right time gays and lesbian be recognized by the constitution by having their marriage legalized through an amendment of the constitution.
Gays and lesbians are people of the same sex who develop sexual attraction or sexual behavior towards each other. When two men are involved in a sexual relationship with one another they are referred to as gays while for ladies they are called lesbians. People become gays or lesbians mainly because of the environment in which they were brought up or due to genetic imbalance. Sexual orientation usually develop across the life of a person that is, people realize at different stages of their life that they are heterosexual, lesbian, or gay. The gay and lesbians did not become what they are by choice (Kreitzer et al., 2014). Their body mechanism that is genetic formation is what makes them who they are in person and what they desire in life. The feelings can not be switch on and off, they are inborn and involuntary. Thus, the constitution should recognize that every human being is different according to their genetic formation. Thus, it should strive to accommodate and protect everyone in the society with their unique features and nature of their body system. In my calculated and thoroughly research opinion there is a need to amend the constitution to accommodate gays and lesbians rights. They are citizens of this great nation and they deserve a place in the constitution since it is their fundamental right to be in this nation. They have the right to the kind of life that they seem is good for them and they should be given the chance to live it to the fullness. They should be given the chance to live their life to the fullest without fear of discrimination or be victim of torture or abuse by those who don’t subscribe to their feelings and nature. As long as an individual is mature enough to be able to be responsible for his/her actions, then there no good reason as to why we should deny that person to define his/her destiny as long as it is within the jurisdiction of the constitution of this great nation and does not violate the rights and privileges of others (Ryan, 2013). Therefore in my essay am going to give an outline as to why there is a need for the constitution to be amended to accommodate gays and lesbian rights.
Same sex relationships and marriages have been witnessed in the history of a number of cultures but the cases were very rare. These were courageous lot who were able to come to the public without fear of any ridicule or ashamed of their sexuality. However, there are millions of successful gay and lesbian marriages which exist in secrecy (Sussman, 2012). But, with the growing number of gay and lesbian marriage, some countries are starting to pay attention to these unions. As of January 2015, seventeen countries allow same sex marriages and several other countries such as Slovenia and Finland are expected to join the list since the support for same sex marriages has intensified across the world. The recognition of same sex marriages is a human right, social and political issue that varies from one jurisdiction to another. There has been a great debate across the world as to whether to allow same sex marriages or instead be allowed to hold different status or even being denied that right (Kreitzer et al., 2014). But there has been great support for same sex marriages especially from the west because they believe that marriage is enhanced by financial, physical and psychological well being of a person and as long as two people have demonstrated to be able to fulfill all that, then the law should grant them the right to go ahead with their plan. But there has been a big resistance especially from the religious groups that it is against the word of God for people of the same sex to marry each other.
Documents filed by the American scientific associations stated that denying gays and lesbians the right to associate is like discriminating against them. This has resulted to the increased call for countries to amend their constitutions to allow same sex marriages (Sussman, 2012). United States has been a great supporter for the legal recognition of same sex marriages (Butler et al., 2014). This support has remained at about 50% since. Majority of supporters of same sex marriages are younger age (less than 50 years)
In the united states of American defense of marriage Act was signed in 1996. Since then the support of Americans on same sex marriages has increased significantly and has largely been endorse by various states administration (ProCon 2015). It has been noted that majority of supporters of same sex unions are younger Americans. Same sex marriages are recognized by the federal government. The legal issues that surround same sex marriages in the United States are determined by the federal system of government (Ryan, 2013). There is a case in court in America that will be argued April 2015 and its verdict expected June 2015 on whether people should be allowed to marry people of their own choice. The attorney general Eric Holder has said the Obama administration would urge the court to make marriage equality a reality for Americans (CNN, 2013). Same sex couples can now marry in 36 states and the District of Columbia.
There are clauses in the constitution which indirectly show that the gay and lesbian are being denied their fundamental rights of living a happy life like any other United State citizen (Weston, 2013). The fourteen amendment state that the state and any other authority should not prohibit or deny any person without due process the right to life , own property or liberty (Alexander, 2011). Although, this law was passed for the sake of slavery, the law applies to all citizens equally. Marriage is a property to the gays and lesbians. They should be at liberty to practice it without fearing for their life. The government has not follow the due process in denying this group their fundamental right. The Eighth Amendment, states that there should be no unusual and cruel punishment on the State citizens (Alexander et al., 2011). The action by the government and the constitution is cruel punishment and inhumane. Denying the lesbians and gay the right to have a peaceful marriage which is free from criticism or victimization is maximum cruelty. The lesbian and gays have the right to enjoy life just like any other human being. Not allowing them to enjoy the pleasures of life is being cruel and it’s a punishment to gays and lesbians. Moreover, the First Amendment gives the lesbians and the gays the right to express their feeling. Marriage is their right and freedom to express their feelings in public. Thus, the constitution should grant them this right because they deserve it.
The world should embrace gay marriages by amending their constitution to suit the growing need for equality in marriages for the following reasons. First, many same sex couples want to marry for their own reasons like legal security, to provide greater legal protection for their children, to celebrate their commitment or simply they want to marry because they love each other (Ryan, 2013). Many same sex partners will marry if they had a choice and that is why there is reason as to why countries should amend their constitutions to remove those discriminations that exist in the marriage act and ensuring equality for same sex partners (Sussman, 2012).
Secondly, there are a lot of benefits that come with marriage that is, access to all relationship entitlements, protections and responsibilities. This is because marriage is recognized by law as legal relationship. Allowing same sex partners to marry each other also will provide them and their families with real social and cultural benefits (Butler et al., 2014). People in same sex marriage have been seen to be healthier, happier and lived longer. Allowing same sex marriages will also be of great importance in terms of economic development because if we allow these couples to marry they will spend some amount of money on their marriage ceremony. This amount of includes an injections on dollars into the economy. This amount money could not have been realized if we don’t allow same sex marriages (Sussman, 2012).There is growing support cross the world from human rights groups for same sex marriages to be allowed. There is need for countries to amend their constitutions especially on the marriage Act to grand them that right. Some of the countries that allow same sex marriages are Spain, US, Canada, Mexico, Sweden, South Africa, Belgium and many more.
Same sex marriages should also be allowed because civil unions are not enough do not offer same legal benefits as marriage (Ryan, 2013). Civil unions are not widely recognized and respected especially by hospitals, school, insures and other government officials (ACLU, 2015). Civil unions are also not recognized in inter state travels. Civil unions have a likelihood of encouraging discrimination against same sex marriages and downgrading the status of their relationship by entrenching a second class status.
Marriage inequality has been established to have an adverse impact on the health and wellbeing of individuals; this is because in Australia ban on same sex marriages lowered their self esteem and making them look like they are less capable of love and commitment. This is because of the notion that same sex marriages are less stable and of less value to the couples and their family members. This kind of stereotypes and discrimination has profound impact on the well being of same sex partners and their families (Goldberg, 2012). This effects are mostly experienced among young people who will end in alcohol abuse, homelessness and even conflicts with their peers and parents and we have even witnessed some going to the extend of committing suicide. Another reason as to why we should amend the constitution to allow same sex marriages is because the legal and social benefits of marriage flow to children of the couples as well as to the marrying couples (Goldberg, 2012). For instance in Australia when same sex couples marry, their children are entitled to legal and social recognition in similar ways of those of opposite sex marriages.
Additionally, amendment of the constitution to allow same sex marriages will ensure that couples have a reliable legal framework when it comes to death and taxes. That is, incase of death of your partner the law will be clear on who will inherit the deceased property (Butler et al., 2014). If these laws are amended it will foster societal acceptance of gay marriages since by legalizing them will help to establish a social norm that will include respect for homosexual lifestyles and marriages (Shmoop, 2015). Same sex couples have the right to all those benefits that the heterosexual people have. If the society allows people to get married, I don’t think why the same society should exclude a person from marrying on the grounds of sexual identification. If we allow same sex marriages, the number of adopted kids will also increase significantly (Goldberg, 2012). There are so many hopeless children in the streets waiting for the day when they will be adopted and in my opinion this is one of the ways in which the government can tackle this issue.
Although amending the constitution to favor the same sex marriage is a democratic step, there are also some problems that are associated with it. For instance incase of a divorce every partner will be liable to it consequences regardless who is at fault, both partners are usually entitled to half the properties accumulated during their time of marriage and the same applies to the liability of debts (Butler et al., 2014). Secondly, there is a constant change of laws covering same sex marriages across the world. The laws are not predictable and therefore they are reliable. Most states are not yet ready to allow same sex marriages.
People in same sex marriages will also be restricted on the number of countries they can live because most countries do not allow same sex relationship especially Islamic and African countries (Butler et al., 2014). Therefore the law in those countries will be a problem to their relationship. However, the United State should be safe heaven to the lesbian and gays by amending the constitution and give them hope of better future. The constitution need to give the lesbians and gays their American dream.
Conclusively, it is evident that there is a need to amend the constitution to allow gay marriages because providing same sex couples with the same rights and privileges as those of opposite sex marriage will not interfere with the rights of others. It will be like extending privileges already enjoyed by the majority to a small group of people who differ in terms of sexual feelings and desires. We are living in democratic world where everyone has a right to do what they think is right as long as they don’t break the law. The society should encourage equality, respect and dignity for everyone. Although there are some problems that may be associated with the law, a pro outshines the cons. There is need for the society to respect the needs and views of everyone. Most same sex couples do not come out and declare their status in public because of the fear of how the society will perceive them. Gay and lesbian marriages are a reality, thousands of gay/lesbians couples have already gotten married in the United States. Therefore this is a reality that the world should embrace.
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ACLU. "LGBT Rights." American Civil Liberties Union. N.p., 2015. Web. 30 Mar. 2015. <https://www.aclu.org/lgbt-rights>.
Alexander, Kern, and M. David Alexander. American public school law. Cengage Learning, 2011
Butler, Martha Anne, and Cynthia Kirkby. Same-sex Marriage, Divorce and Families: Selected Recent Developments. 2014.
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Cox, Barbara. "“The Tyranny of the Majority is No Myth”: Its Dangers for Legally Married Same-Sex Couples." (2013).
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Kreitzer, Rebecca J., Allison J. Hamilton, and Caroline J. Tolbert. "Does Policy Adoption Change Opinions on Minority Rights? The Effects of Legalizing Same-Sex Marriage." Political Research Quarterly (2014): 1065912914540483.
Ryan, Erin. "Why Equal Protection Trumps Federalism in the Same-Sex Marriage Cases." Available at SSRN 2242692 (2013).
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Weston, Kath, and Jerry Floersch. Families we choose: Lesbians, gays, kinship. Columbia University Press, 2013.
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