The Instigator
TheSkeptic
Pro (for)
Winning
199 Points
The Contender
Phil
Con (against)
Losing
190 Points

Gay Marriage Should Be Legalized.

Do you like this debate?NoYes+17
Add this debate to Google Add this debate to Delicious Add this debate to FaceBook Add this debate to Digg  
Vote Here
Pro Tied Con
Who did you agree with before the debate?
Who did you agree with after the debate?
Who had better conduct?
Who had better spelling and grammar?
Who made more convincing arguments?
Who used the most reliable sources?
Reasons for your voting decision
1,000 Characters Remaining
The voting period for this debate does not end.
Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 10/19/2008 Category: Society
Updated: 8 years ago Status: Voting Period
Viewed: 17,514 times Debate No: 5683
Debate Rounds (3)
Comments (134)
Votes (68)

 

TheSkeptic

Pro

Gay Marriage should be a legal form of marriage for the simple fact that disallowing LGBT groups to marrying is taking a right that should be theirs.

I'll let you go first, as I am contending that there are no substantial legal reasons to disallow same-sex marriage, and thus it should be a right for any LGBT couple to marry.
Phil

Con

Thank you for the challenge to debate this topic. I haven't debated for some time (busy building new features for the site), but decided I need to have a little fun.

I have to point out the obvious. In your first paragraph, you say that gay marriage is already a right ("taking a right"), however in your second paragraph, you say that it "should" be a right. Which one is it?

Your contention that gay marriage "should be a legal form of marriage" otherwise we as society would be taking a right away is false. The right to which you are referring doesn't exist (in most states) or in the U.S. Constitution. Since the right doesn't currently exist, you can't take it away.

You stated, "there are no substantial legal reasons to disallow same-sex marriage." Though not substantial in your opinion, are there other legal reasons to disallow same-sex marriage? If there are in fact legal reasons, how did you determine they were not substantial, and why would you choose to ignore them? In the next round, please clarify for myself and the audience how you came to decide which legal reasons are substantial and which ones are not, and why. Is the fact that more than ‘55% of Americans are opposed to gay marriage'(1) a substantial reason in your opinion, or just something we should ignore?

If you want to marry two women, should you be allowed to do so…legally? What about three women, or four? What if you want to marry a sibling, should that be allowed? The answer to all of these satirical questions is of course, "no". Why? Because it's common sense that there's something inherently wrong with a man being married to multiple women, a sibling, or someone of the same sex. I'm personally not opposed to expanding several marriage benefits to people in relationships, specifically those dealing with taxes and hospital visitation privileges. However, from a moral point of view, I believe it is not in the best interest of the U.S. to recognize gay marriage. Once we go down that road, it opens up all sorts of doors that I and most Americans want to keep closed. For example, if gay marriage were to become a legal right in the U.S., then it would be only a matter of time before churches could be legally punished for not recognizing gay marriage, or, before children are taught the who, what, where, when and how of homosexuality. Marriage has always been, is, and should remain between a man and a woman.

(1) http://pewforum.org...
Debate Round No. 1
TheSkeptic

Pro

I thank my opponent for taking this debate, and am glad to hear that he is working hard on new features :D!
*Note - Gay will be a loose term for the LGBT community.*

~Counterarguments~

"I have to point out the obvious. In your first paragraph, you say that gay marriage is already a right ("taking a right"), however in your second paragraph, you say that it "should" be a right. Which one is it?"

--> All that meant is that it SHOULD be a right for gay people to marry, because others would contest that it SHOULDN'T a right for gay people to marry.

"Your contention that gay marriage "should be a legal form of marriage" otherwise we as society would be taking a right away is false. The right to which you are referring doesn't exist (in most states) or in the U.S. Constitution. Since the right doesn't currently exist, you can't take it away."

--> Because there isn't a law, amendment, or what have you recognizing gay marriage, this is a discrimination on gays. The lack of a legal form of marriage recognizing gay marriage is discriminating against the RIGHT of gays to marry like any other heterosexual couple, because without a law recognizing the rights of gays, they CAN'T marry, a right that I am arguing should be present for heterosexuals AND homosexuals.

"In the next round, please clarify for myself and the audience how you came to decide which legal reasons are substantial and which ones are not, and why."

--> I would say that the burden of proof is on you, since I argue there is no justifiable legal reason to prohibit gay couples to marry. Whatever your argument may be, I'd be glad to refute it. Gay couples should marry because they are voluntary and adults. Marriage should be given to anyone who fits these requirements.

"Is the fact that more than ‘55% of Americans are opposed to gay marriage'(1) a substantial reason in your opinion, or just something we should ignore?"

Argumentum ad populum. The fact that 55% of Americans are opposed to gay marriage has no merit on the justification for gay marriage.

1. Slippery Slope argument

I'll disregard the problems with your slippery slope argument, but instead I'll take a new approach. Why NOT let polygamous marriage? I have yet to see a feasible argument against more than two partners who are consenting and adults.

The only problems with the marriages we will supposedly "soon allow" are as follows:

Polygamous marriages: Most show signs of coercion, and involve young under-aged girls. However, if it were to be between consenting adults, then I'd say that is fine and should be made legal.

Incestuous: The reason why we say "no" to it in an intrinsic why is due to the Westermarck effect [1], a subject involving imprinting. But if it's between two or more consenting adults, then SURE. GO AHEAD.

Bestiality (just in case you do this one): Animal abuse, most would say. The animal can't say "I do".

~Conclusion~
Not only does the classic slippery slope argument fail (in a new approach I'd dare say), but I have shown that gay couples SHOULD have rights, since not letting them have the ability to marry is discrimination. I will await my opponent's new arguments and rebuttals.

---References---
1. http://en.wikipedia.org...(psychology)#Westermarck_effect
Phil

Con

You are arguing that a law should be created to recognize gay marriage. Let's consider what it takes to become a law at the federal level, and then we can clearly determine whether or not gay marriage should be legalized:

According to http://www.usconstitution.net... here is the general process:

"First, a bill must pass both houses of Congress by a majority vote. After it has passed out of Congress, it is sent along to the President. If the President signs the bill, it becomes law.

The President might not sign the bill, however. If he specifically rejects the bill, called a veto, the bill returns to Congress. There it is voted on again, and if both houses of Congress pass the bill again, but this time by a two-thirds majority, then the bill becomes law without the President's signature. This is called "overriding a veto," and is difficult to do because of the two-thirds majority requirement.

Alternately, the President can sit on the bill, taking no action on it at all. If the President takes no action at all, and ten days passes (not including Sundays), the bill becomes law without the President's signature. However, if the Congress has adjourned before the ten days passes and without a Presidential signature, the bill fails. This is known as a pocket veto."

Since the protocol as described above has not occurred in regards to legalized gay marriage, then it is indisputable that the recognition of gay marriage should not be a law.

Furthermore, in your comments of this debate you agreed with the statement, "Yeah, screw democracy." If you are not pro-democracy, then that would explain why you so easily threw aside my argument that a majority of Americans do not want gay marriages to by recognized under the law. The fact of the matter is that we live in America, and it is a democracy (or representative democracy), and laws are created by a strict set of protocols which are directly influenced and affected by public opinion. Homosexual Americans have EXACTLY the same rights as heterosexual Americans, no less and no more. Both groups of people are permitted to marry someone of the opposite sex.
Debate Round No. 2
TheSkeptic

Pro

So it seems that my opponent either drops, or agrees with the clarifications I gave toward his points about my opening argument, with arguments such as "since the right doesn't currently exist, you can't take it away."

He has also seemed to dropped his slippery slope argument, so may the audience keep this in mind.

~Counterarguments~

1. Process of a bill becoming a law

I fail to see the weight in my opponent's argument concerning how a bill becomes a law. I am well aware of the process, but this fails to show for my opponent why gay marriage shouldn't be legalized. It basically amounts to that since gay marriage hasn't been made legal by the federal government, it shouldn't be legal. Is it just me or is that just absolutely redundant!?

Also, I did not explicitly state whether the state or federal government should legalize gay marriage, but only that it should be legalized. The role of who should legalize it is of no concern in this debate.

2. 55% of Americans oppose gay marriage

As I've stated before, just because a slight majority of Americans oppose gay marriage, this shows nothing on whether or not gay marriage should be legal, only that Americans oppose it. I respect their opinions, but this doesn't mean I agree with their opinions. Do note that a well 3/4 of America is Christian [1], and thus many would oppose gay marriage based solely on religious purposes. About 20% of Americans believe the sun revolves around the Earth [2], but does that give even an inkling on the merit of that claim?

3. Comment about "Yeah, screw democracy"

First of all, I agreed with that statement in a partially sarcastic manner, though it probably wasn't clear. However, this is once again a FAILED argument. Not only should the comment section be out of the context of this debate, but whether or not I support democracy (which I do) has no merit on the legality of gay marriage.

"Homosexual Americans have EXACTLY the same rights as heterosexual Americans, no less and no more. Both groups of people are permitted to marry someone of the opposite sex."

--> EXCEPT MARRIAGE. Which is exactly the point of this debate. The point is, homosexual people want to marry, uh duh, the same gender! Not allowing them this option is taking away a right that is theirs.

~Conclusion~

In the progression of this brief debate, my opponent has given no substantial argument against gay marriage. The only feasible argument was his slippery slope argument, but he has failed to bring it back up. I tackled that argument in a new way, by asking him why polygamy, bestiality, or incest should be illegal if they all involve consenting adults. His recurring point is about 55% of Americans being opposed to gay marriage, but I clearly showed that to be a fallacious argument. For all the reasons I have shown, and for all the points I have refuted, vote for Pro.

---References---
1. http://en.wikipedia.org...
2. http://www.smirkingchimp.com...
Phil

Con

During the course of this debate my opponent has made wild assumptions, while ignoring the facts and the rule of law. He is arguing that gays do not have equal rights, yet he fails to point out a single legitimate right that heterosexuals have, but which is being refused to homosexuals. We all have the exact same rights, and the right to which I am referring is the right to marry someone of the opposite sex. There is no right to marry someone you love. Furthermore, I have not abandoned my opening arguments; to the contrary, I am using this concluding round to bring my round one round two arguments full circle.

While my opponent callously throws majority rule out the window, I cannot follow suit. The fact of the matter is that a clear majority of Americans do not want gay marriage to be legalized (I offered an explanation of why in round one with the slippery slope argument). Even more supportive of my position is that only 36% of Americans actually support gay marriage (1). These statistical facts apparently hold no water with my opponent, which is strange because public support is the "why" and "how" most laws are created.

In order for my opponent's premise that "gay marriage should be legalized" to become true, a law would have to be created and passed. It's a fact, there is currently no law recognizing gay marriage at the federal level. I can only assume my opponent is referring to a national law to recognize gay marriage since he did not specify a state for such a law. Therefore, I merely pointed out the protocol by which to pass a federal law, and I am arguing that since no law has been passed, or even proposed, gay marriage should NOT be legalized. My opponent failed to reference any pending legislation at any level of government that would in fact legalize gay marriage, even though I asked for specific legislation in round one. If my opponent is unable to produce evidence of a pending bill in support of his argument, how can he possibly contend that gay marriage should be legalized? His arguments are merely based on his personal feelings and view of the world. Furthermore, based on his anti-American comments for this debate, and his profile content, I suspect he doesn't really like traditional America (ie: democracy), and would instead prefer a socialistic-type of nation where the beliefs of a few rule the lives of many.

In response to my opponent's bizarre suggestions that polygamy, bestiality, or incest should be made legal in order to support his argument that gay marriage should also be legalized, I would argue the exact same reasons to oppose such laws as I am here for gay marriage.

In conclusion, gay marriage should not be legalized because:

a) Only 36% of Americans support such a law, and 55% are opposed to it.

b) There are no supporting bills in the pipeline. If there is no pending bill, then gay marriage shouldn't be legalized because it needs to first go through the proper channel to become a law.

(1) http://pewforum.org...
Debate Round No. 3
134 comments have been posted on this debate. Showing 1 through 10 records.
Posted by Korashk 6 years ago
Korashk
RFD:
Arguments to Skeptic because his were better;
Sources to Skeptic to counter rampant vote-bombing and give him the win he deserves.
Posted by TheSkeptic 7 years ago
TheSkeptic
Simply challenge me or message me if you desire to start a debate.
Posted by magpie 7 years ago
magpie
Skeptic:
If your PRO position is: 'if GLTGs are prohibited from marrying other GLTGs of the same sex, then they are, in fact, being discriminated against'; then I will argue CON.
Since GLTGs are already allowed to marry straights or other GLTGs, albeit to members of the opposite sex, there is no point in arguing that they should be allowed to do that, which, they are already permitted to do; so I will not accept a debate with the false premise that they are not allowed to marry.
Your atheism and my theism are incompatible to assign moral determination; but I will debate whether it is appropriate for the majority to determine the legal structure.
I will not entertain argument of both issues within the same debate.
Posted by TheSkeptic 7 years ago
TheSkeptic
I'm not saying that the minority should be able to boss around the majority, but I'm saying that what is moral or not should not be determined by majority rule.

I can gladly debate you on this topic (gay marriage or cultural relativism) and show you the flaws of your thinking.
Posted by magpie 7 years ago
magpie
Skeptic may call majority rule, cultural relativism, if he chooses, but the fact is that it makes no sense for the minority to decide what is lawful. The majority decides who occupies the White House and congress. Within the limitations established by our constitution, the majority rules.
Imagine, if you will, that you and nine others decide to drive from Sacramento to the bay area to see a football game. While approaching Oakland, you and eight of the others decide that you will go to an Oakland Raiders game. While Jack wants to drive on to San Francisco to see a Fortyniners game.
Instruct me, please, on why you and eight others must cave to Jack. Are you kidding yourself? You certainly aren't kidding Sadolite or Magpie.
Posted by TheSkeptic 7 years ago
TheSkeptic
That's an absurd idea - cultural relativism. Are you saying that morals are determined by what a culture, meaning the majority, deems to be true?
Posted by sadolite 7 years ago
sadolite
"but society says no" So if we as a society put same sex marriage to a vote and the same sex marriage advocates loose then society said "no" correct? And this should put the issue to rest, society said "no".
Posted by magpie 7 years ago
magpie
Society sets rules re: marriage, contract law, child care/abuse, etc. Defining marriage as between two adults of opposite sex and not closely related is a reasonable requirement. No one is discriminated against. If a pedophile wants to marry a child and society says no, is the pedophile being deprived of his constitution rights? He may feel so. After all, he wants to do what he wants to do. His perspective is egocentric. His position is quite understandable, but society says no. Likewise, two twelve year-olds, or brother and sister, or mother and son. Homosexuals are people of one sex or the other nothing in the law says that they cannot marry. Two heterosexuals may not marry if they are the same sex. the law applies to everyone regardless of sexual proclivity.
Posted by skeetervalentine 7 years ago
skeetervalentine
It's already been explained in the forums.

Sex is not marriage, that's a ridiculous notion.
Posted by sadolite 7 years ago
sadolite
DATCMOTO, Excellent analogy, I can't wait to here someone explain this analogy away using incoherent, logic defying, politically correct psychobabble.

"People of the same sex cannot physically 'marry' in this sense.. our body's do not allow it, externally or internally."
68 votes have been placed for this debate. Showing 1 through 10 records.
Vote Placed by KingDebater 6 months ago
KingDebater
TheSkepticPhilTied
Agreed with before the debate:--Vote Checkmark0 points
Agreed with after the debate:--Vote Checkmark0 points
Who had better conduct:--Vote Checkmark1 point
Had better spelling and grammar:--Vote Checkmark1 point
Made more convincing arguments:--Vote Checkmark3 points
Used the most reliable sources:--Vote Checkmark2 points
Total points awarded:00 
Vote Placed by dsjpk5 10 months ago
dsjpk5
TheSkepticPhilTied
Agreed with before the debate:-Vote Checkmark-0 points
Agreed with after the debate:-Vote Checkmark-0 points
Who had better conduct:-Vote Checkmark-1 point
Had better spelling and grammar:-Vote Checkmark-1 point
Made more convincing arguments:-Vote Checkmark-3 points
Used the most reliable sources:-Vote Checkmark-2 points
Total points awarded:07 
Vote Placed by famousdebater 10 months ago
famousdebater
TheSkepticPhilTied
Agreed with before the debate:--Vote Checkmark0 points
Agreed with after the debate:--Vote Checkmark0 points
Who had better conduct:--Vote Checkmark1 point
Had better spelling and grammar:--Vote Checkmark1 point
Made more convincing arguments:-Vote Checkmark-3 points
Used the most reliable sources:--Vote Checkmark2 points
Total points awarded:03 
Vote Placed by BLAHthedebator 1 year ago
BLAHthedebator
TheSkepticPhilTied
Agreed with before the debate:--Vote Checkmark0 points
Agreed with after the debate:--Vote Checkmark0 points
Who had better conduct:--Vote Checkmark1 point
Had better spelling and grammar:--Vote Checkmark1 point
Made more convincing arguments:Vote Checkmark--3 points
Used the most reliable sources:--Vote Checkmark2 points
Total points awarded:30 
Reasons for voting decision: So i I move closer Then love will take over And lead the way
Vote Placed by tajshar2k 1 year ago
tajshar2k
TheSkepticPhilTied
Agreed with before the debate:Vote Checkmark--0 points
Agreed with after the debate:Vote Checkmark--0 points
Who had better conduct:Vote Checkmark--1 point
Had better spelling and grammar:Vote Checkmark--1 point
Made more convincing arguments:Vote Checkmark--3 points
Used the most reliable sources:Vote Checkmark--2 points
Total points awarded:70 
Reasons for voting decision: #Blessed
Vote Placed by Midnight1131 1 year ago
Midnight1131
TheSkepticPhilTied
Agreed with before the debate:Vote Checkmark--0 points
Agreed with after the debate:Vote Checkmark--0 points
Who had better conduct:--Vote Checkmark1 point
Had better spelling and grammar:--Vote Checkmark1 point
Made more convincing arguments:Vote Checkmark--3 points
Used the most reliable sources:--Vote Checkmark2 points
Total points awarded:30 
Vote Placed by UchihaMadara 2 years ago
UchihaMadara
TheSkepticPhilTied
Agreed with before the debate:--Vote Checkmark0 points
Agreed with after the debate:--Vote Checkmark0 points
Who had better conduct:Vote Checkmark--1 point
Had better spelling and grammar:Vote Checkmark--1 point
Made more convincing arguments:Vote Checkmark--3 points
Used the most reliable sources:Vote Checkmark--2 points
Total points awarded:70 
Reasons for voting decision: CVB someone...
Vote Placed by CheeseFries 2 years ago
CheeseFries
TheSkepticPhilTied
Agreed with before the debate:-Vote Checkmark-0 points
Agreed with after the debate:-Vote Checkmark-0 points
Who had better conduct:--Vote Checkmark1 point
Had better spelling and grammar:--Vote Checkmark1 point
Made more convincing arguments:-Vote Checkmark-3 points
Used the most reliable sources:-Vote Checkmark-2 points
Total points awarded:05 
Vote Placed by 1Devilsadvocate 3 years ago
1Devilsadvocate
TheSkepticPhilTied
Agreed with before the debate:--Vote Checkmark0 points
Agreed with after the debate:--Vote Checkmark0 points
Who had better conduct:-Vote Checkmark-1 point
Had better spelling and grammar:-Vote Checkmark-1 point
Made more convincing arguments:-Vote Checkmark-3 points
Used the most reliable sources:-Vote Checkmark-2 points
Total points awarded:07 
Reasons for voting decision: Con gets 5 points for MCA & MRS. I gave the other 2 to counter the C.V. of Erick / ockcatdaddy, some one else should counter the rest, which comes out to 8 points left to counter. It could be argued that Bullish's vote should be countered as well, since he too provided no RFD, his however at least could be seen as plausible.
Vote Placed by Bullish 3 years ago
Bullish
TheSkepticPhilTied
Agreed with before the debate:--Vote Checkmark0 points
Agreed with after the debate:--Vote Checkmark0 points
Who had better conduct:--Vote Checkmark1 point
Had better spelling and grammar:--Vote Checkmark1 point
Made more convincing arguments:Vote Checkmark--3 points
Used the most reliable sources:--Vote Checkmark2 points
Total points awarded:30