Tag Archives: same sex marriage

Why I think gay and lesbian people should be able to get legally married

I know that this is a topic that seems to come up frequently, and maybe it is a bit over done, but I have to get this off my chest. That is especially after hearing a friend say it was “unChristian” to be gay. No matter how you feel about gay people, the simple truth is that they are Americans and they deserve the same freedoms that we all do. Keeping them from marrying each other is not going to stop the fact that gay and lesbian people exist.

Frankly, I do not believe that being gay is a “choice.” That God, Goddess, Allah, Deity, Mother Nature, or whatever you believe in made gay people gay and straight people straight and that it was on purpose. Gays are not an abomination, are not sinners, are not evil, or any of the other Biblical BS that is floating around out there. As far as that goes, there are more rules to how straight couples should behave in the Bible than there are for gay couples, so I think that says that God trusts gay couples more than straight couples.

Anyway, back on topic here. First of all, over the years, marriage has evolved. First, if a man could buy a woman, she was his wife. Then it was if a father had a dowry to get rid of his daughter, she could become a wife. There were and are arranged marriages, and forced marriages, and marriages of obligation. Most marriages in the US now are voluntary and for love, which is where I am going. The concept of marriage has evolved over the years, and it should evolve again.

Then there is the fact that for no other reason than the most popular religions in America claim that gay marriage is wrong are there laws against it. The Constitution does not allow government to make laws against religion, so why should it allow laws based solely on religious rhetoric? And for those of you who think, “yeah, we have separation of church and state” someone needs to show me that, because I haven’t seen it yet for all the times that I have read the Constitution.

Finally, there is the fact that marriage in the US really has nothing to do with religion. The state that you get married in validates the marriage. A ceremony can take place in a church, but without that piece of paper from the state, the marriage is not legal and the couple doesn’t get any of the benefits of marriage. Therefore, religion should have no ruling on who should get married and who shouldn’t.

What’s the fuss over Proposition 8?

The California courts have overturned Proposition 8, which banned gay and lesbian couples from marrying legally. I can only say that I’m glad somebody saw sense in what has become a fanatically charged issue. Of course this isn’t the end of it, naturally. We are looking at years of legal challenges in the courts of Appeals and then in the Supreme Court before this issue can be laid to rest one way or the other.

Every single challenge to same-sex marriage is based on religious traditions, not legal precedent. Whether it is Mormon, Baptist, Muslim, Lutheran, Catholic or any other denomination, all their objections are based on their spiritual viewpoint and history. Most of the arguments against same-sex marriage that I have been reading tend to quote the Old Testament of the Bible and some are quite extreme (I won’t say which denomination it was, but they were quite vindictive.) in their reactions.

This is not a religious issue, it is a civil rights issue, and from that perspective I can see absolutely no reason to deny any couple the exact same rights and protections held by any more traditional couple. Frankly, the same-sex couples I know have been together longer than the heterosexual couples I know. They are just as loving, as supportive of their partners as any male-female bonding, and in some cases more so. Perhaps because they don’t have to deal with the problems of male-to-female translation the rest of us have to work through.

This is not to say that same-sex marriages are better, that would be ridiculous. There are the same issues of bickering, finance and the same rates of abuse or control that hetero couples go through. (On that note let me stress that if you are in an abusive relationship with ANYONE, get out of it as fast as you can. There are people that will help you. No one deserves to be abused in any way shape or form.)

How can allowing same-sex marriage hurt anyone else? It cannot harm a marriage within a traditional Church organization, since ninety per cent of established churches do not recognize homosexuals and lesbians as members. Therefore these marriages would be outside their purview and not subject to their rules in the first place. If a Church doesn’t allow same-sex marriages, that is their right within their own organization; it does not allow them to force that view on any one outside their organization. The Bible is not a legal text, nor does it form part of the Constitution.

It can’t conceivably harm insurance companies, since if these individuals were in a heterosexual relationship, they would be still providing insurance for two people instead of just one, regardless of the gender of the beneficiary. And the couple in question would still be paying their premiums like everyone else. Same policy, same costs, same benefits, where’s the problem?

Hospitals and medical providers still would have to allow decisions to be made by the patient’s spouse. Let me say right now that it is not the place of an institution to decide who the patient allows to make decisions in their care in case of incapacity or illness; that right is solely up to the patient.

Socially, allowing same-sex marriages would take away an area of instability by granting protection to a group that has been at risk of persecution for centuries.  Things would change, certainly, but for the most part it wouldn’t affect most of the rest of the population.

Sexual issues and religion have been a sore spot for many, many years and that isn’t likely to change any time soon. I have always felt very strongly that sex is one topic where a church establishment has no authority. What happens in my bedroom is between me and my lover, and no one else has any right to say anything about it. What happens in your bedroom is none of my business.  Enough said.

The entire issue, to my way of thinking can be summed up as follows:

If you don’t approve of gay marriage, don’t be in one.

 If you do approve, lend a hand with the legal fight for those who respect marriage so much that they are willing to fight for it.

Find your peace, friends.

Rev. Zita.