The United States seems to consist of a lot more gay people than most people think. With studies averaging around ten to twenty percent, and polls suggesting that twenty five percent of adults are homosexual, it seems we need to adjust to these terms (Morales). Homosexual people are often discriminated against. Most people do not realize that being gay is not a choice, but determined by genetics and environmental aspects. Gay bullying is a big issue in our culture.
A more controversial issue in culture is gay marriage. When two heterosexual people get married, they get roughly 1,400 rights; about 400 of them are share rights, while the rest pertain to federal rights. Through civil unions and the limited abilities to join in homosexual marriage, only state benefits are available (Robinson). With only a minimal set of civil liberties available, homosexual partners do not receive many very important benefits that could be argued to be necessary for a healthy, meaningful life. Because of this, I believe we need to allow a universal privilege across the country for gay marriage, as well as allow them to receive the same benefits as heterosexual marriages; if this was to happen, gay couples would get medical, death, and family benefits, which they need. With this law being universalized throughout the country, homosexual marriage and partnership would become more acceptable.
Having medical rights is one of the biggest issues for people in a homosexual relationship. Some hospitals and situations require that only family members can be present to see the patient; restricted hours also fall here. If a homosexual female was in intensive care, her partner would not have the right to visit her (Marrige Rights and Benefits). The stress involved in any trip to the hospital is enormous; not being able to visit a partner who is on the brink of death would be traumatizing, though.
A second issue with medical rights is dealing with unresponsive or terminal patients. At certain points, major medical decisions need to be made, yet the patient is unfit to make those decisions. Since their partner is probably who knows them best, and may even know what they would want for this situation, it would seem logical to allow the patient’s partner to make those decisions. Homosexuals do not have this right, though. Because of this, unwanted procedures may occur, which may end up being life-changing. We need to allow equal medical rights for marriages so that these situations can happen more smoothly and end in the way the patient would have desired.
Though the term ‘death benefits’ does not sound pleasant, these benefits are very important. If a heterosexual male was to pass away, his wife would have the right to consent to any after-death procedures which had not yet been arranged. She would be able to participate fully in deciding burial plans and final arrangements. She would know what her husband wanted, and could follow through in the way he would have wished. But if a homosexual man died, his partner would not have these rights. Without these rights, the partner would not be able to plan any arrangements; the funeral would consequently not ensue the way the deceased would have wanted (Marriage Rights and Benefits). The partner may also have a harder time processing the death since he did not get to participate in the funeral provisions. Death rights are important, so we need to make them available to more people.
With over 1,400 rights, I feel family rights are some of the most important. Family is important to everyone; we would not be who we all are today without our families. Homosexuals do not get to be so calm about their families. Most people have family issues to deal with when first coming-out as gay, such as trying to get their families to understand their lifestyle. Once they grow up and try to start a family, a bigger problem arises; they are unable to start a family. Since reproduction is not able to occur without spending thousands of dollars on medical procedures, they may look towards adoption or foster care. Some homosexuals may find a way to adopt, but filing for joint adoption of foster care is not legal at this time. Another big issue could develop if one of the partners has a child already from a past relationship. Once the partners have been together for some time, they may want to file for one to become a stepparent; this is not a right homosexuals have, however (Marriage Rights and Benefits). Since they cannot become a stepparent, they cannot legally be considered part of the family. If the child’s parent gets into an accident or trouble with the law, the parent’s partner would want to take the child in as their own, as they may feel like a family at that point. This would not be able to happen, though; the child would have to go somewhere else. The partner would not get rights to the child, and may not get to speak to the kid again, depending on where he or she ends up. Another issue with family includes property and equity distribution rights at divorce; these rights are unavailable, which could cause one or both of the partners to become bankrupt, in debt, or homeless at divorce.
The issues with civil rights should be enough to change our thinking and procedures, yet there are many other strong arguments. With more marriages comes more money, which would equal economy stability. Bullying rates would be reduced since homosexuals would be perceived as normal. Depression issues and suicides would decrease, as well. Looking at all of this, on top of the benefits equal civil rights would bring, makes it easy to support gay marriage. Some people are ignorant to reasons for supporting gay marriage, and only think about the negatives. These people who object equal rights use objections, a couple stating that homosexuals are unnatural, and that they are unfit to be parents. Most of these people have strong religious backgrounds, but saying homosexuality is unnatural is going against their God since gay people were created that way for an intended purpose. They have choices on whether they act on their urges, but their desires have been set in stone by whoever or whatever created humanity. The problem of whether gay people are sufficient at raising children is purely biased with no real eminence. Homosexual parents treat and raise their children the same as heterosexual parents; they may even raise them better as to dealing with stress and bullying given that the gay parents have undoubtedly encountered strong currents of harassment. Another issue is that they might ‘turn their child gay,’ but it has been stated various times that sexual orientation is not a choice or an effect by other people. Having gay parents will not make them gay, but it will teach the children to be more accepting of others and make them knowledgeable about homosexuality and oppression issues. Overall, the objections used against gay marriage are flawed; they are good to state, though, for the reason that they end up providing more motives to favor gay marriage.
Since all of the rights mentioned are simply given to heterosexuals, they may not notice how privileged they are. Things that may seem simple to them are much harder for homosexuals. The justness in this is nonexistent. Rights should not be treated as privileges; if they are given out, they need to be distributed fairly. Among everything mentioned, if these rights were enforced, homosexual people would start to feel accepted in the community. Communities would therefore be brought together, creating a tighter-knit country. The benefits outnumber the faults in this argument, which shows that it is probably most ethical to make gay marriage legal. The ability to help partners in medical situations, family aspects, and deaths are only a couple of the countless reasons to support homosexuals through this process. These rights can only be enjoyed if we universalize gay marriage and marriage rights throughout our country, thus we need to reach out and do all we can to make these equal rights possible.