Because of my time in California the past few weeks, I've been very exposed to the "conversation" surrounding Proposition 8, the California constitutional amendment which bans same-sex marriage. On Tuesday, it passed, and people are, to say the least, upset about it. Because this is an issue close to my heart, and on my mind, I thought I should probably post about it.
To put it simply, Prop. 8 is shameful. It is not okay to discriminate against a person based on their sexuality, just as it is not okay to discriminate against them based on their race, gender, or religion. This proposition is very clearly discrimination. People are very sensitive about the word marriage, even our new president-elect, who I feel to be a very compassionate, smart, open-minded guy has said that while he believes in equal rights for homosexual couples, he doesn't necessarily agree with the word "marriage" being used to describe their relationship. I completely disagree with this. Marriage is a contract, not some magical transformation. Anyone who is over the age of 18 in this country is able to sign a contract, why are we taking that right away from people based on their sexual preference? It's like saying that a person couldn't have a mortgage if they were black, or couldn't have a car loan because they were Catholic. There is no reason that gay and lesbian couples shouldn't have the same rights as everyone else, except perhaps "because god said so," which, quite frankly, I'm pretty sure he didn't, and even if that was the case, we are supposed to have a separation of church and state in this country.
The government, by allowing same-sex marriage, would not be forcing any church to perform these ceremonies. No one is going to chain pastors to their pulpits and make them do something that they believe is morally wrong, but at the same time, the church should not have the power to determine which people have basic rights. The right to enter into a contract. The right to be married.
The other argument I keep hearing is that by allowing same-sex couples to marry, we are somehow violating the "sanctity of marriage." You know what violates the sanctity of marriage? DIVORCE, quickie weddings in Las Vegas between people who barely know each other and teenagers getting married just because one of them happens to get pregnant. If marriage is a scared institution, why are we so casual about it? (As long as it's between straight people.) Furthermore, the group with the highest rate of divorce in this country, are those that scream the loudest about the "sanctity of marriage." Isn't that interesting? Besides that, how exactly, does someone else's relationship effect theirs? Just because the neighbors may beat their children (they don't, by the way) doesn't mean that Justin and I would be bad parents. Why would someone else getting married effect the "sanctity" people at all? They should mind their own buisness.