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Thu, Nov. 3rd, 2005, 11:36 pm
rmsisson: Gay Marriage

I've been thinking about the gay marriage issue, and I'm having a hard time pinpointing the reasoning for each side of the debate. Aside from the cliches such as "sanctity of marriage" for the pro and "discrimination against gays" for the con, what else is there? Emotion removed, what is the logical reasoning behind each side of the gay marriage argument?

Fri, Nov. 4th, 2005 12:46 pm (UTC)

There's logic involved here? I think it goes something like this. Choose one of the following oversimplifications, and then apply junk science:

1. Gays are bad.
2. Gays are ok.
3. I'm gay.

Fri, Nov. 4th, 2005 06:33 pm (UTC)

It really seems like gay people are total attention whores.

Fri, Nov. 18th, 2005 05:03 am (UTC)

Dr_Cyanne is right. Arguing the gay marriage issue is about as useful as fighting over the last slice of pizza. Broadly speaking, you have two camps: the idealists and the social conservatives.

The idealists subscribe to the notion that America stands for total equality among all social classes. While noble, this view amounts to an unrealistic socialist vision.

I question whether such a goal is desirable or realizable without significant technological advance.

The social conservites, on the other hand, believe that social policy should reflect moral values. Their fear of secular ideology suceeding in divorcing law and morals is certainly justified. However, they tend to cling desparatly to the past and refuse to tolerate anything their sometimes pineinsular morality does not easily classify.

Neither side makes any real sense. Their arguments are generally bad and indicative of laziness and stupidity. (If they were any good, the issue would probably be resloved.)

The real issue, I think, is one of social shaping and administration.

If gay marriage is permitted, what are the effects? We do not now stop gay couples from living together or raising children, so the visible effect would seem to be minimal. Allowing gay marriage may also resolve some of the nebulous custody, contractual, and regulatory issues surrounding gay couples that currently plauge our courts.

On the other hand, the States do have an interests aptly served by restricting marriage as a benefit to heterosexual couples. Prevnting gays from marrying discourages them from entering into the kinds of contractual and custody relationships married people enjoy. Marriage benefits encourage men and women to raise children together. This balance socializes children and allows them to fit into society better. They benefit from understanding the behavior of men and women. And it encourages relationships which are more likely to increase the population. All of these goals are legitimate social interests. And the law, you can see, discourages homosexual relationships preciely because the social utility of these relationships is virutally worthless outside of the sexual predilictions of the individuals engaged in them. Essentially, gay marriage would be a self serving alteration to the status quo.

I soundly reject any notion that the States' refusal to recognize homosexual marriage somehow deprives gays of a liberty interest to which they are entitled. This situation is not analogous to racial or religious discrimination. While I do not deny the reality of homosexual discrimination, the social policies involved for this debate do not compair to the ones the idealist camp would have everyone believe.

I also reject any contention that this issue is one of Constitutional rights. That argument misses the point entierly.

Fri, Nov. 18th, 2005 06:16 pm (UTC)

I think it just comes down to morality. I couldn't think of any logical reason for each side's position other than that. Some people would say that you shouldn't impose your morality onto others, but I think that that overlooks the point that every single law is based on morality. Somewhere, people got together and decided that murdering someone is morally wrong, so it should be punished. And embezzling money from a corporation is morally wrong, so that should be punished. All laws are morality-based.

But I have to wonder if a constitutional amendment is really necessary. Thousands of amendments have been proposed over times, but only a few have ever been ratified, and that indicates that amending the constitution should only be done in serious cases for serious issues. State legislatures or Congress could just make laws banning gay marriage.

However, just about every single time a state passes a ban on gay marriage, some judge somewhere overturns it on the basis of one ground or another. Louisiana passed a gay marriage ban by almost 80%, and a couple weeks later, a judge ruled it unconstitutional. And in Massachusetts, their supreme court ordered the legislatures to pass a law legalizing gay marriage by a certain date. The courts are so out of whack to their constitutional obligations that I think the only benefit to having an amendment to ban gay marriage would be to keep judges from imposing their own personal beliefs and overruling the will of the people.