Gay Marriage, Same Sex Marriage Research Papers Example
Type of paper: Research Paper
Topic: Government, Criminal Justice, LGBT, Law, Politics, Marriage, Social Issues, Relationships
One of the greatest legal issues that have remained unresolved for a while in the U.S. is the legalization of gay and same sex marriages (NOLO 1). The issue attracted mainstream attention infrequently until the late 1980s. Gay activists took to the streets and in the courts trying to force the states' and federal government to recognize and legalize their social practices. In 1970, for instance, a gay activist, Jack Baker brought a lawsuit against the state of Minnesota after the state denied him a married license to marry his male lover (Adam 262). The hearing ruled against Barker's complaints and denied him the right to marry another man. Further, The Supreme Court ruled that limiting marriage to opposite sex was not a violation of the constitution. Similar to Barker’s petition, other states have been denying gay and same-sex individuals legal appreciations claiming that the act is against fundamental moral values (Smith, Anna 308). However, there are states that have legalized gay practices; thereby, creating legal conflicts between different states.
Legally, it is the responsibility of the federal government to intervene in such conflicting cases. However, the efforts by the federal government to solve this particular issue have been in question in relation to its latest legal provisions (NOLO 1). For instance, some of its latest legal requirements have created conflicts between states instead of providing solutions to controversial issues. A good example of such regulation is the Defence of Marriage Act (DOMA), which allows the states to refuse to recognize same-sex marriages granted under the laws of other states (Smith, 318). The legal move seems to have contributed to more conflicting legal systems, whereby, some same-sex individuals in states, especially where they are not recognized, feel neglected and abandoned by the federal government (Adam 270).
The greatest legal question on this issue has been on balancing of the moral and ethical values with the rights of the same sex community. Most people, especially the religious leaders, have been opposing the legalization of gay marriages, claiming that the act is completely against the moral and religious beliefs (Adam 273). Therefore, the question has triggered discussions in various courts in both the federal and state legal systems, with the primary aim being to determine the best legal actions to take.
After extensive deliberations on the issue of same-sex marriages, the federal government has come up with several decisions, which provide some benefits to gay communities (NOLO 1). The number of states that support and recognize same-sex marriages is also increasing following various amendments to their respectful constitutions. For instance, in 2013, the US Supreme Court decision in U.S. v. Windsor cleared the way for the same-sex couples to receive the relevant federal benefits and protection (Baude 1). During the determination of this case, the federal Supreme Court struck down the section of DOMA, which seems to limit marriages to opposite-sex only thus providing similar benefits to the gay couples (Adam 276). The federal government has also created agencies, such as the US citizenship and immigration services (USCIS) that oversee the protection of same-sex couples' rights in different states. (Smith, Anna 310).
I do not support gay marriages, based on my beliefs and moral stand. Therefore, I think the latest move by the federal government to help same-sex couples by allocating same benefits and legal protections is completely a social decay. Instead of taking this move, I think the federal government should have tried to put more restrictions on gay marriage practices and make an international campaign of same-sex elimination from the society.
Adam, Barry D. "The Defense of Marriage Act and American exceptionalism: The" gay
marriage" panic in the United States." Journal of the History of Sexuality 12.2 (2003):
Baude, William. "Interstate Recognition of Same-Sex Marriages After Windsor." (2013).
NOLO. Issues Affecting Same-Sex Couples FAQ: Does the federal government recognize same-
sex marriage?. 2014. http://www.nolo.com/legal-encyclopedia/issues-affecting-same-
sex-couples-faq-32292-2.html. march 27th 2015.
Smith, Anna Marie. "The politicization of marriage in contemporary American public policy:
The Defense of Marriage Act and the Personal Responsibility Act." Citizenship Studies
5.3 (2001): 303-320.