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Friday, June 21
The Indiana Daily Student

Legal decency

In early June, Ryan Anderson gave a conference at the Stanford Anscombe Society where he argued against same-sex marriage, saying it was not a granted right.

I’ve always seen the legalization of gay marriage in terms of equity and human rights.

I thought the desire for equal rights were feelings everyone, regardless of their sexual orientation, would be able to sympathize with.

Anderson argues, however, that our definition of marriage deals with procreation and childrearing, which involves a relationship between two members of the opposite sex.

He argues first that a marriage between two people of the same sex does not fall under our legal definition of what marriage is.

Second, he argues that the government is involved in marriage in order to produce children.

He then cites studies, though their origins are dubious at best, that have shown committed heterosexual marriages produces the best children.

Therefore, there are no practical benefits to legalizing homosexual marriage, he claims.

So I have to wonder, if legally gay marriage doesn’t make sense, then does it become a matter of human decency?

Marriage is indeed a social contract, as Anderson puts it.

But while it means many different things to different people, it is a moral matter as well. We cannot justify excluding a group from a human right simply because prejudiced laws exist.

If anything, we need to focus on changing those laws.

Anderson bases his claims on laws that can be changed. There shouldn’t be a reason for the special kind of romantic relationship between two males or two females to not be legally recognized.

What kind of world are we creating for these people if the sexual orientation they’re born with is always the other, the anti-mainstream, the ?alternative, the one that’s not legally recognized?

I think this has equally dangerous effects on society as the social costs of poor childrearing.

Furthermore, it infringes on concepts of equal rights — which does, indeed, have to do with basic human decency.

Thus, I believe the legal recognition of gay marriage is a part of basic human rights on the grounds of equal rights and freedoms.

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