Up until about a year ago, I was firmly against gay marriage. I'm not really sure why, other than I cannot fathom being sexually attracted to the
opposite sex. Don't get me wrong here; I can appreciate a good looking, well built hunk of a guy, and would rather look at Brad Pitt than Kevin
James. But I'm not sexually attracted to them him, just appreciative.
I began to ponder the social contracts we have with each other. Perhaps it's because am I getting older and becoming more politically and socially
aware. But considering my opinions on some social programs as compared to others, my stance on gay marriage is not so cut and dry as "this is why
I've changed my mind". For example, while I firmly believe that Social Security should be scrapped in lieu of one saving one's own money, or at
least the opportunity to opt out of it, I don't really have any problems with Medicare/Medicaid, save that they should be reworked to be more
efficient and made to work for
the elderly instead of against them.
When the whole California Proposition 8 issue came to light, I was full of righteous indignation. "We" won! Now, while I still believe that the pro
gay marriage crowd should've accepted the outcome (after all, they did allow a vote by the citizens of California. The citizenry voted against it.
That's called "democracy". Get over it and try again next time.), I began to question the legality of preventing
gay marriage. I was still
against it, but the seed of doubt was planted, and my stance was no longer on solid ground.
Then, about a year ago, I was looking at my marriage license (I needed it for insurance) and I said to myself, "Self, this looks a lot like a
contract." And I thought about what marriage is, what is agreed upon, who is responsible for what, and realization dawned: this doesn't just
like a contract, this is
a legally-binding contract between two individuals!"
The continued illegality of gay marriage is a clear violation of what is known as the "liberty of contract", which is the right of two or more
individuals to enter into a contract with each other. The liberty of contract was normal practice from the late 19th century until around FDR's
presidency, when the SCOTUS began to take away the rights of citizens to contract with one another.
Today one might argue that contracts don't cover illegal acts. This is true. You can't contract to kill someone, as murder is illegal. But murder is
illegal because it causes harm to another person. Gay marriage is illegal, and no contract today can protect it. But what harm does gay marriage
cause? Even if a man and a woman are married, that has little to no effect on the fact that I am married to a woman and we have a teenaged son. Two
men or two women marrying don't affect my family any more than a traditional couple does.
The fact that marriage is a legal contract, one that should apply to gays as well as non-gays as it does no harm to anyone's personal liberties and
freedoms and, in fact, promotes individualism and liberty, should be the least of the reasons to legalize it. The fact that it has has no quantitative
adverse affects on society as a whole should be one of the major reasons to legalize it. The main thought should be that we, as a society, have to
move past the thinking that only a man and a woman could possibly love each other and want to live out their lives publicly displaying that love as a
The "it's against God" argument is fallacious. In Leviticus (of the Jewish Torah and Christian bible) the laws against homosexuality are thus:
18:22 Do not lie with a man as one lies with a woman; that is detestable.
20:13 If a man lies with a man as one lies with a woman, both of them have done what is detestable. They must be put to death; their
blood will be on their own heads.
If one believes what the bible says, as I do (mostly, but that's another story
), then homosexuality is against God. However, context is king
here. Those two scriptures are describing the very infancy of humans on Earth. It's difficult at best to "be fruitful, and multiply, and replenish
the earth" if humans aren't procreating. Fundamentalists often point to Paul the Apostle as speaking against homosexuality. However, the word didnt
even enter the Christian bible until the early 1970's. In the original text he talked about "sexual immorality", which could be any of a number of
Love and devotion between two people, whatever their gender, should be promoted and held up as an example of morality and family values. Traditional
couples have proportionally more divorces and instances of cheating than do gay couples, and I find those acts far more deleterious to "family
values" than two people of the same sex marrying.
I know several people that are proudly gay. And I will stand with every one of them to promote their absolute right
of entering into the
marriage contract, as well as their human right to love each other and live publicly as a married couple, promoting the values of liberty, devotion,
and family stability that all people should have.