There’s a plethora of standard arguments used as to why same-sex marriage shouldn’t be permitted. I want to quickly run them over with a bit of logic:
- Marriage is traditionally between a man and a woman. Actually, same-sex marriage was practiced in many parts of society, and indeed even the Roman Catholic church, ending within that institution around the 16th century. Not only that, there’s a lot of other things that have been traditional over the years, but they’ve been abandoned. If you look in particular at the current rights of women, not many of those are traditional if we go back to the timeframe when marriage became about a man and a woman.
- Homosexuality is unnatural. Actually, homosexual behaviour has been documented in hundreds of species – mammalian, avian, etc. On the other hand, homophobia has only been documented in one species – the human species. Which trait seems unnatural now?
- Homosexuals can’t have children, and marriage is about procreation. Given the planet’s population has topped 7 billion and is already dangerously unsustainable, it’s morally unjustifiable to argue for only allowing relationships that see procreation occur. What’s more, I’m yet to encounter evidence of any government that forces infertile couples to get divorced, or prevents older people who are past child bearing age from getting married.
- The bible is against homosexuality. The bible is against a lot of things, many of which are done without hesitation by christians on a daily basis. Eating shellfish, wearing artificial fabrics, working on Sundays, etc. You can’t cherry pick.
- We live in a Christian society. Actually, we don’t. Christianity is the major religion in Australia, but it’s not the governing religion. Other faiths are permitted, as are atheists and agnostics. In fact, the legal protection of the unbelief of atheists in itself should be sufficient cause to prevent any religious argument against same-sex marriage from being permitted.
- Gays and lesbians are seeking special rights and treatment. Actually, we just want equal rights. We don’t want special rights. We believe everyone should be treated the same.
- Permitting same-sex marriages is the “thin end of the wedge”. This is the deep-bigot argument that by allowing same-sex couples to get married society will be eventually forced to allow adult-children marriages or adult-animal marriages. This is ridiculous. Neither of those behaviours represent consensual acts and are viewed as repugnant by the majority of society. Homosexuality does not fall into that category.
- It’s just a sheet of paper. Why does it matter? If it’s just a sheet of paper, let’s not let anyone get married, and require everyone already married to get divorced. What, that’s unfair? Yeah, that’s what we’ve been saying.
- Same sex marriages will lead to polygamous marriages. Um, so what? As long as it’s consensual and loving, why does it matter how many people are in a marriage? Society spends way too much time obsessing about what consenting adults get up to between one another.
I know there’s other common arguments out there. Feel free to fire them at me, I bet I can shoot them down just as quickly.