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Legalization of Same-Sex Marriage

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Same-sex marriage also known as gay marriage has remained a controversial topic over the years and people oppose it on the basis of religion, cultural, social, and/or political reasons. Indeed, those who practice it have come under a lot of discrimination and rejection in view of the fact that they are seen to practice unsocial behavior. The major part is that they had to hide while doing it since there was no legal support for the practice meaning that they were doing it illegally. However, over time there has arisen civil rights group fighting for the recognition of same-sex marriages that has since been legalized in some states. This has greatly affected the family law which continues to contradict the actual family values set in the constitution. Same-sex marriage legalization will continue to greatly affect either positively or negatively the parents, children, couples, social morals, family values and social structures. In this regard, its legalization still remains an enormous debate to lawmakers. This paper gives the sources and references to be used in the discussion for and against the legalization of same sex marriage in the view of critically analyzing the topic on facts and figures.

National Conference of State Legislatures, "Same Sex Marriage" (July 2011),

This webpage gives informed ideas on same-sex marriage, civil unions and domestic partnerships. The page was last updated on 14th July 2011, meaning it has current ideas and development of the topic. The ideas presented include the issuance of marriage licenses to couples of same-sex in different states such as Connecticut, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, New York and Iowa. The page also deals with recognition of same-sex marriages in other states; civil unions allowed in different states that gives spouses a chance to practice and right to same-sex marriage. The webpage has a lot of information in that it gives a chronology of significant events that change the view of same-sex marriage; it gives a same-sex timeline since 2003. There are also charts that summarize civil unions and domestic partnerships in different states and their legality or illegality. It informs readers of the states and statutes of each on the aspects of marriage especially same-sex marriage and its definitions. The webpage also gives the benefits that are extended to couples in same-sex marriages for state employees. The Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA) is given as an example of the legal acts that have been enacted by congress to bar same-sex marriage at the federal level.

Eskridge, William N., & Spedale Darren R. Gay Marriage: For Better or For Worse? What We've Learned from the Evidence. New York: Oxford Univ. Press, 2007, Print

This book gives the facts about gay marriage in the United States; the authors begin by stating what the opponents say on the issue. They give evidence based on social structure and their actual research in Scandinavia that has been run for 17 years. They try to dispute the notion that allowing or legalizing same-sex marriage would lead to compromising the institution of marriage, harming children, or weakening of the family structures. The authors tend to show that the research indicated that allowing gay marriage would benefit the marriage institution. The authors present the happy lives of same-sex marriages and track their fulfilling lives that indeed proof that same-sex marriage is a benefit to society. The book is a scholarly description that presents the facts and figures to help ascertain that gay marriage is beneficial. It aims to change the traditional thinkers to focus on the conventional issues of society by first checking the facts rather than baseless principles of society or religion. It has the demographics on the number of families that practice same-sex marriage; for instance; those who opt for civil marriages, church weddings and the traditional structures. It also offers a historic perspective of gay marriage in the country and how it has transformed over time.

Cahill, Sean. Same-Sex Marriage in the United States: Focus on the Facts. New York: Rowman & Littlefield, 2004, Print

The book brings into focus same-sex marriage as an initial topic in politics; this is specific to the 2004 elections. It gives the facts that are present in the debate on gay marriage based on certain facts. In reading the book the reader will seek to answer a set of questions including; the number of same-sex couples in the U.S.; where they live; the rights gay people enjoy in the U.S.; the number of children brought up by gay parents; the policies that are in place that affect the gay children and they policies that affect the gay parents; and the response of religion especially Christianity especially on the basis to oppose gay marriages. The author works at the National Gay and Lesbian Task Force as a policy director and brings out his agenda clearly in the book. In his capacity he opposes the discrimination of gay people and pushes for the legalization of gay marriages arguing that facts given argue for themselves. He avoids political debates and gives hard facts that should be used in the voice of reason to understand the topic. He uses slide bars, pullout quotes and charts to make the information easy to understand. The book has charts on the laws that affect the rights of gay couples in different states; laws of adoption in every state; distribution of gay households, and the raising of children in the U.S. The book also quotes several politicians from the republican and democratic parties as they argue for or against the topic. Among the statistics presented by the author include the spending of anti gay crusaders which is way above that of gay advocates; the increase of gay marriages in the rural and southern states and the little benefits that gay couples get at retirement age.

Bradley, Gerard V., "Same-Sex Marriage: Our Final Answer?" Notre Dame Journal of Law, Ethics & Public Policy, 14, (2000): 729-752

This journal article tries to oppose same-sex marriage in view of studying the law and social norms; the author quotes how marriage is being transformed to uncertain incidences from an evidently defined relationship. He insists that the basis of marriage is the sexual morality principle that is supported by law and other secondary attributes. The author gives a historic account on the issue of marriage when it was a taboo to talk about gay marriages. However he notes that the topic has now been liberalized and customized to suit certain interests. The article identifies Vermont as the first state to legalize gay marriages which was done to suit political interests; which were known as civil unions. The article gives an example of the case at the high court Baker vs. State where there were provisions to allow same-sex marriages. This was later done by legislators who were guided by other reason apart from social morals and norms. This article will be very important in the proposal as it will give the facts behind legalization of gay marriage in opposing the practice.

Paprocki, Thomas J. Marriage, Same-Sex Relationships, and the Catholic Church. Loyola University Chicago School of Law, 38, (2007): 247-268

The murder of two gay persons opens this journal article, giving the cruel nature of society especially to those who oppose social norms. It gives the discrimination against the gay community for following their hearts and passion. The article is very informative on the nature of marriage arguing that neither the church nor the state created marriage and thus it is for the individual to decide on whom to marry. It also focuses on the law and truth in relation to the state where it gives a historic account of the civil laws. The article helps to understand social norms and taboos; giving the religious perspective and the social perspectives. The Catholic Church’s position on the matter is clearly defined and analyzed so as to justify same-sex marriages.

MacLeod, Adam J., "The Search for Moral Neutrality in Same-Sex Marriage Decisions," BYU Journal of Public Law, 23, (2008): 1-59

This journal article starts on the day California State struck down conjugal marriage and was later joined by Connecticut and Massachusetts. This gave gay couples the right to have same union marriages and redefined marriage. The states did away with the old definition of marriage and opened a new chapter that caused social norms and moral debates. The article follows the debate and adoption of the laws by the high court and the steps that occurred before the decision was made. The article makes clear the dos and don’ts in every state and hence gives the legality issues that surround gay marriages. The author examines the extent of the decision made by the high court and this is very important to the report as it examines the legality of same-sex marriages. The Supreme Judicial Court (SJC) decision was based on the essence of marriage which is in a stable relationship and not conjugality. The decision ruled that same-sex marriages brought self fulfillment and thus legalized them. This article is very effective in the report since it will explain the arguments in each case and help reflect the legalization of same-sex marriage.

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