Fighting for Equality: Same-Sex Marriages Essay

Fighting for Equality: Same-Sex Marriages Essay

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Same-sex marriages have been at the center of heated discussion since 1993, since the Hawaiian Supreme Court stated that allowing same-sex partners to license their relationships contradicted the Constitution. In 2004 Massachusetts was the first state to announce that it would make same-sex marriages legal. At present there are seventeen states, along with the District Columbia, which allow this kind of marriage. However, there are still thirty-three states which consider same-sex marriages unconstitutional. In addition, it is important to note that in the United States’ Congress is still making laws that forbid gay marriage. These laws deny a segment of the population (homosexuals) the same right same as the majority: to marry. It is high time the government did something to stop the discrimination of same-sex couples and abolish these laws.
Both cases (Hawaii, 1993, and Massachusetts, 2004) had a legal response. In 1996 Bob Barr, a Republican, introduced a bill banning same-sex marriages. The bill was voted for in Congress and signed by Bill Clinton into law. This bill, known as the Defense of Marriage Act, recognized only opposite-sex marriages and prohibited the states from acknowledging homosexual marriages—even the ones performed elsewhere. The legislation passed in 2004 had a much greater impact as it was aimed at changing the U.S. Constitution. In this document (the Federal Marriage Amendment) Marilyn Musgrave, a Republican, proposed to legally recognize only heterosexual nuptials: “Marriage in the United States shall consist only of the union of a man and a woman. Neither this Constitution or the constitution of any state, nor state or federal law, shall be construed to require that marital status or the legal incidents...

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..., and Robin Fretwell Wilson. Washington D.C.: Beckett Fund for Religious Liberty; Lanham, Md.: Rowman & Littlefield Publishers, 2008. Print.
Vickers, Lucy. "Promoting Equality or Fostering Resentment? The Public Sector Equality Duty And Religion And Belief." Legal Studies 31.1 (2011): 135-158. Academic Search Premier. Web. 29 Apr. 2014.
“Washington courts controversy as it puts same-sex marriages on legal footing”. Question More. 9 Febr. 2014. Web. 9 Apr. 2014.
"What Does the Bible Say about Same Sex Marriage?" ChristianAnswers.Net. Web. 24 Apr. 2014.
Windsor, Elizabeth Schlain, and Roberta A. Kaplan. "Is Section 3 Of The Defense Of Marriage Act Unconstitutional?" Supreme Court Debates 16.5 (2013): 21-28. Academic Search Premier. Web. 30 Apr. 2014.
Zdechlik, Marc. "Church Group Protests Same-Sex Marriage Law" MPR News, 1 Aug. 2013. Web. 26 Apr. 2014.

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