What Are The Reasons For And Against Gay Marriage

2689 words - 11 pages

What are the reasons for and against gay marriage
Gay marriage is one of the most controversial issues in the modern world. For the past thousand years,
marriage has been recognized as the social union between a man and a woman. In most cultures across
the globe, homosexuality was viewed with disdain, and marriages between same-sex couples were
forbidden.However, homosexual relationships are slowly gaining acceptance, as homosexuals have
become vocal in fighting their right to marry in the early 90s. With an increased in tolerance for
homosexuality in the society, the controversy over the legalization of gay marriage has been disputed
among people in many nations. While the majority of the population believes that the legalization of gay
marriage will have negative impact on the society, gay activists claim that it is against basic civil rights to
prohibit them from marrying.
Same-sex marriage is nothing new, with historical evidence showing that marriage has not always been
the institution between heterosexuals. Gay marriages have existed in some form around 600 years ago.
(Tulchin, 2007) Since early 1960's, gay activists have been striving for the right to marry. However, the
issue of gay marriage only arose from the 1990's, as three same-sex couples filed a lawsuit against the
state of Hawaii for the prohibition of gay marriage in US. The case has come to a conclusion that
banning gay marriage is not constitutional, as there is no real practical reason and compelling arguments
for it. (Bower, 2010)
This event had triggered the world's attention over the next decade and consequently led to the
creation and approval of the Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA) in 1998. This law is exercised in the US
and it has further defined the term marriage, solely as the legal union between a man and a woman.
(Bower, 2010) In addition, this law asserts that no states in the US are required to recognize same-sex
marriage that is performed in other places. (Masci, 2007)
Although gay marriage is not allowed in many countries, some places provide an alternative - civil union,
as a compromise. In order to reduce controversy, the term civil union was used in replace of marriage,
and it is an institution that offers same-sex couples all the rights, benefits and privileges that are
equivalent to marriage. (Kirk, 2010)
In 1989, Denmark was the first country to establish civil union laws. Since then, many other countries,
including Australia and some states in the US, have adopted the civil union law in attempt to resolve the
problem of gay marriage. (Ellis-Christensen, 2010)
Despite the establishment of civil union, advocates of gay marriage have never stopped battling for the
right to marry. They indict that civil union do not include all the legal benefits, or the cultural significance
of marriage. (Infoplease, 2007) For instance, all benefits and rights granted to a civil partnership are
restricted within the state, as DOMA has denied the recognition from...

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