The Instigator
Mr.Infidel
Pro (for)
Winning
20 Points
The Contender
shift4101
Con (against)
Losing
0 Points

Gay Marriage Should be Legal

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Post Voting Period
The voting period for this debate has ended.
after 3 votes the winner is...
Mr.Infidel
Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 10/25/2011 Category: Philosophy
Updated: 5 years ago Status: Post Voting Period
Viewed: 4,604 times Debate No: 18981
Debate Rounds (4)
Comments (7)
Votes (3)

 

Mr.Infidel

Pro



Resolution

Homosexuals should be given the right to marry with full equal benefits as their straight counterparts.

The opponents of the debate, and what positions they will argue.


I am affirmative (the pro gay marriage position) whilst my opponent is going to argue the anti-gay position (the negative).

The scope of the debate.

To discuss the legalization of gay marriage.

The length of the debate, in number of rounds.

There will be 4 rounds. First round is acceptance only.

The maximum length of each statement.

8000 Characters

The time limit between statements.


72 hours (3 days).

Burden of Proof

The burden of proof is shared.

________________________________________________________________________

Voters, please read this debate before voting, do not vote based on your biased opinion.


PLEASE DO NOT ACCEPT THIS DEBATE UNLESS YOU ARE SERIOUS ABOUT THIS!
shift4101

Con

"based on your biased opinion."

As if your opinion isn't biased. (No offence.)

Disregard the above statement. Letsgetiton!
Debate Round No. 1
Mr.Infidel

Pro

I would like to thank my opponent for accepting this debate and hope it will be engaging for the two of us. I will be making a case for gay marriage and ask that you read my argument with an open mind.

Contention 1: The Harm Principle

Same-sex marriage is no more capable of harming anyone than heterosexual marriage. Consider the people that we do allow to marry: Pimps, drug dealers, arsonists, felons of all kinds, known pedophiles, and many more people who have committed terrible crimes are free to marry and do so on a daily basis [1]. Indeed, it is reduction ad absurdum to say that we are preventing gay marriage to avoid harming society. In fact, gay marriage bans harm those of in a homosexual union. It is estimated that there are at least 1,049 legal rights that are denied to homosexual partners [2].


Contention 2: Gay marriage bans violate the equal protection clause of the 14th amendment.

The Equal Protection Clause of the 14th amendment requires that “[no State shall] deny any person within its jurisdiction the equal protection of the laws.” [3] Bans on SSM are in violation of this Equal Protection Clause for at least three reasons: (1) They deny gay men and women the ability to marry the person of their choice; (2) They single out and harm a suspect class by preventing them from marrying; (3) There are over 1,000 rights they are denied simply because they cannot marry. [See source 2]

Indeed, gay marriage bans are unjust because they discriminate against gay couples by preventing them from forming legal valid marriages. This is a clear violation of the Equal Protection Clause.

Contention 3: Legalization of gay marriage benefits society

If gay marriage were to be legal, then all would benefit. Undoubtedly there are many people who feel that gay marriage does not benefit society, when in fact, the exact opposite is true.

Contention 3.1: Economics

Alongside the better treatment of homosexual counterparts, there is a betterment of the economic status of society as a whole, meaning that legalization of SSM would be beneficial to the community.

It has been estimated that there would be an immediate revenue gain of about $17 billion if gay marriage would be made legal nationally. According to Market Watch “one thing is abundantly clear: legalization of gay marriage would mean a windfall for the wedding industry.” (Keep in mind that wedding industry are about a $70 billion/year business)! [4]

Contention 3.2: Children

Currently, there is an estimate of 16.2 million double-orphans in the world today [5]. Rather than providing these children with the opportunity to be in loving homes, adoption agencies are continually denying a stable home to the child simply because the potential parents are gay.

Gay parents are equally able to raise children as their straight counterparts. Dr. Ellen Perrin says, “The vast consensus of all the studies show that children of same-sex parents do as well as children whose parents are heterosexual in every way—in some ways children of same-sex parents actually may have advantages over other family structures—they did better in discipline, self-esteem, and had less psychological difficulties in home and at school [6].”

Another study done by the USC sociologists say children with gay parents show more empathy for social diversity and are less confined by stereotypes. This study indicates that sexual orientation has no measurable effect on the quality of parent-child relationship or on the medical health of the children. [7]

Let’s recap:

  1. Same-sex marriage does not harm anyone;
  2. Same-sex marriage bans violate the equal protection clause;
  3. Legalization of gay marriage benefits society economically; and
  4. Gay people are just as able to raise children as their straight counterparts, thus being able to provide a home for orphans and the needy.

Thank you.

References

[1] “Gay Marriage: The Arguments and the Motives.” iVeritas Et Ratio-Truth and Reason.Accessed on October 26, 2011 http://www.bidstrup.com... (point 9)

[2] “In Defense of Gay Marriage.” Accessed on October 26, 2011 http://www.angelfire.com...

[3] http://www.usconstitution.net...

[4] http://www.marketwatch.com...

[5] http://answers.google.com...

[6] http://www.webmd.com...

[7] http://www.narth.com...


I would like to thank Danielle and Freeman for helping me find sources via their debates.
shift4101

Con

Thank you Mr. Infidel for this debate.

What is Marriage, why does the state honor Marriage, and who has to supply the BoP. (Burden of Proof)

Considering the nature of this debate, I will use a rather ambiguous definition of Marriage. Marriage - A relationship between married people or the period for which it lasts. (1)

Because the state recognizes marriage, we can assume there is both a beneficial reason and social effect behind that recognition. But what could be the beneficial reason? The two most likely reasons would be the following: [] The state sees a special value within Marriage [] or they are honoring the tradition of Jewish, Christian, and/or Islamic religious traditions.

If we assume the latter, the state is in direct violation of the 1st Amendment. (2) Even if we let that slide, the nature of those religions would inherently dismiss the possibility of Gay Marriage. So this conclusion is rather unlikely.

So then we must assume the former; the state recognizes a special value within Marriage. What is this special value? Most likely, the special value is the natural, procreative acts that take place in a stable heterosexual marriage that keeps a society alive. If no children are created or raised, within 100 years that entire society will cease to exist. However, if we apply this to any other type of relationship that is not procreative, the state loses its incentive to sponser the Marriage.

Unless my opponent disagrees with my inital statements regarding marriage, the Burden of Proof is now on my opponent entirely to display what other distinctively beneficial reason the state has for recognizing a homosexual marriage. Mr. Infidel has provided a few arguments of that nature, which I will now rebute.



C1 Sub: Harm

This argument largely depends on the provided definition of harm. Does it physically harm anyone? Due to the nature of sodomy, both consenting partners are physically harmed during sexual interactions in a homosexual relationship. Does it emotionally harm anyone? By legalizing gay marriage the whole Christian community in America, amung other religious communities, would be distraught. So yes, state support of Gay marriage would cause harm.

C1 Sub: Who do we allow to marry? (Pimps, drug dealers, arsonists, etc.)

A person's history and ability are incredibly less obvious than his/her sexual orientation when applying for a marriage licencse. To examine each couple, heterosexual or homosexual, for defects such as infertility or a history of violence would be both dehumanizing and expensive. In the current system the benefits of recognized, generally-good marriages exceedingly outweigh the disadvantages of a handful of poor marriages. In other words, the state can only practically recognize marriage by the type of acts that come with marriage, such as child rearing and raising; rather than the actual, varying effects that come with any-given marriage. Even if we allow same sex marriage, pimps, pedophiles, arsonists, etc will still be able to get married.


C2 Sub: Denies marrying any desired person ("They deny gay men and women the ability to marry the person of their choice")

No man can marry another man, nor woman a woman, regardless of his/her sexual orientation. Equal protection under the laws exists, so this point is irrelevant.

C2 Sub: Singles out suspect class ("They single out and harm a suspect class by preventing them from marrying")

No man can marry another man, nor woman a woman, regardless of his/her sexual orientation. Unless my opponent can prove there is something innately different between homosexual men and women and heterosexual men and women, such as there is with African-Americans and Caucasions, no single suspect class is being singled out or harmed.

C2 Sub: 1,000 rights denied ("There are over 1,000 rights they are denied simply because they cannot marry")

No man can marry another man, nor woman a woman, regardless of his/her sexual orientation. They can marry anyone they like, so as long as they are a member of the opposite sex so procreative in type actions may take place. Therefore, no rights are being denied to a select group.

C3 Sub: $17 billion in national revenue

Even if recognizing Gay Marriage called for $30 billion in revenue, it would still absolutely pervert the reason why the state honors marriage. Speaking economically, what is to stop me from going off and marrying my best friend and recieve all of the benefits marriage entails, like "joint tax filing, tax exemptions, social security benefits, insurance benefits, and hospital visitation privileges"? (3) Even so, if the state should dismiss the initial reason to recognize any law, whats stopping the government from legalizing contract killing, sale of any and all drugs, or prostitution? Surely these would generate some form of public renevue.

C3 Sub: Adoption of Orphans

One study has suggested that father abscence causes girls to experiment sexually earlier, leading to more teen pregnancies. (4) Another study suggests homosexually raised children are more inclined to become homosexuals or bisexuals. (5) Regardless of the status of children raised in homosexual households, this is more of an argument for legalizing first, joint, and second-parent adoptions in the U.S. than an argument for Gay Marriage. Marriage is not required to adopt (except in Arkansas, which forbids any unmarried couples from adopting children) (6)

Conclusion

I fail to see any terribly convincing arguments my opponent may have provided. If he has provided any, I am sure he will reiterate them in the later rounds where I will further rebute them. But in the meantime, I rest on my resolution that honoring Gay Marriage would remove the purpose of any state honored marriage.

I thank my oponent for his wonderful openning round!

_________________________________________________

1. http://www.google.com...;
2. http://www.usconstitution.net...;
3. According to one study, there are more than 1,000 rights and privileges associated with marriage. See “Achieving FullEquality: 2007 Gill Foundation Annual Report” http://gillannualreport.org...
4. http://gaymarriage.procon.org...
5. http://gaymarriage.procon.org...
6. http://gaylife.about.com...
Debate Round No. 2
Mr.Infidel

Pro

Thank you for your arguments and rebuttals. You are a formidable opponent and I am pleased to be debating with you.

For purpose of this debate, I am going to concede and accept my opponent's definition of marriage as . Marriage - A relationship between married people or the period for which it lasts. (Shift4101).

==REFUTATION OF CON'S ARGUMENTS==

State's Interest in Marriage?

My opponent has brought up an excellent point, namely, "What is the State's interest in Marriage?" To answer this question, my opponent has supplied two possible reasons: (1) The state sees a special value within marriage; and (2) The State honors the tradition of religion. I will concede that these are possible reasons; however, I would like to bring up my own reasons. Linette Scott, the Deputy Director of Health Information & Strategic Planning for the CA Department of Public Health, has indicated that the state has many purposes in licensing and fostering marriages. For example, marriage helps to: (1) facilitate public order by organizing individuals into cohesive family units; (2) Develop a realm of liberty and free decision making by spouces; and (3) Create stable households. [1] All of these purposes apply in heterosexual couples as well as same-sex couples. This will become important later in the debate.


The APA says: "research shows that same-sex coupels are similar to heterosexual couples in essential ways and that they are as likely as opposite-sex couples to raise mentally healthy, well-adjusted children. Thus, there is no scientific justification for denying marriage equality, when research indicates that marriage provides them many important benefits." [2] [emphasis mine]. To summarize: same-sex and opposite-sex couples are similarly situated.

So to conclude, the state has many interests in marriage, not just religious or special values like my opponent would like for you to believe.

Now, I would like to refute my opponent's two possible causes for state's interest in marriage and refute them to show how they have no baring in the result of this debate.

1) Same-sex marriage violates the first amendment.

Okay, so what is the first amendment? The first amendment sates: "Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the Government for a
redress of grievances." [3] Hence, that has NOTHING to do with marriage, nor does it say that SSM would violate this amendment.

2) Special value.

Before you make this claim, you need to define what a special value is. Marriage has NOTHING to do with procreation. Moreover, based upon my opponent's logic, marriage should be denied to couples who are sterile or have no desire for children.

| CONCLUSION |

I have shown that there are more than just 2 reasons for federal marriage, hence refuting my opponent's claims. Furthermore, I have re-affirmed that SSM should be legal, just upon the interest in marriage. Anyway, I shall now deal with defending my own arguments.

==DEFENSE OF MY ARGUMENTS==

Contention 1: Harm

My opponent completely drops this argument. When I mean "harm", I refer to physical, mental, or moral injury. My opponent says "Due to the nature of sodomy, both consenting partners are physically harmed during sexual interactions in a homosexual relationship." Please prove this as I have not had any physical injury during any homosexual experience.

"Does it emotionally harm anyone? By legalizing gay marriage the whole Christian community in America, among other religious communities, would be distraught." I'm sorry, but my opponent still has provided no evidence for his claim. Moreover, this is a secular not a religious society. Why should we let religion dictate the rights of the peple to people who don't even believe in religion X?



A person's history and ability are incredibly less obvious than his/her sexual orientation when applying for a marriage license. To examine each couple, heterosexual or homosexual, for defects such as infertility or a history of violence would be both dehumanizing and expensive. In the current system the benefits of recognized, generally-good marriages exceedingly outweigh the disadvantages of a handful of poor marriages. In other words, the state can only practically recognize marriage by the type of acts that come with marriage, such as child rearing and raising; rather than the actual, varying effects that come with any-given marriage. Even if we allow same sex marriage, pimps, pedophiles, arsonists, etc will still be able to get married.--Shift4101

this is completely irrelevant to the debate.

Contention 2: The 14th Amendment

Again, completely irrelevant to what my opponent is saying. I am well aware that "no man can marry another man", which is why I am arguing that it should be legal! Equal protection is relevant.

There are 1,000+ rights denied, which is completely dropped. "They can marry anyone they like, so as long as they are a member of the opposite sex so as long as they are a member of the opposite sex so procreative in type action may take place." This is irrelevant as procreation is not important in determining who can marry whom.

In Turner v. Stafley, 482 US 78, 95 (1987) "[T]he decision to marry is a fundamental right and marriage is an expression of emotional support and commitment." [4] Hence, we see that procreation is not involved with determining marital rights.

Contention 3: Benefits

C1.1: Economics

“Even if recognizing gay marriage called for $30 billion in revenue, it would still absolutely pervert the reason why the state honors marriage.” Firstly, who decides what “perversion” is? Secondly, I have already refuted the claim by providing alternate reasons for state recognized marriage. “What’s stopping the government from legalizing contract killing, sale of any and all kinds of drugs, or prostitution?” Respectfully, please stay on topic. I am for prostitution and drug sale of all kinds, but that is not what we are debating. As for the contract killing, please see contention 1.

C1.2: Children

Legalization of same-sex marriage can provide for better stability with the legal and financial benefits that come with legalization of marriage. Hence, this is called the “utility factor.” I have already shown how couples of the same-sex are just as capable of raising children as their heterosexual counterparts. However, if they were able to be legally married, they would be better able to provide a more stable family.

What you want to do is compare 1 to 100, when a few homosexual families are not good; you want to abolish all homosexuals from having children.

Instead of providing a loving home for children, my opponent would rather have children suffer in an orphanage simply because the potential family is gay.


Over ½ million children are in foster care and 100,000 are awaiting adoption [5], should children be deprived of the right to a loving family simple because the parents are gay?

I want to thank you for your opening round and for your excellent arguments. I look forward to your response. Thanks.



References

1. Walker, Vaughn R. "Case3:09-cv-02292-VRW Document70." AFER, 4 Aug. 2010.
http://www.afer.org... p. 67.

2. The American Psychological Association. "APA Praises Prop 8 Decision as Victory for Science, Human Dignity."
http://www.apa.org...

3. US Constitution: 1st Amendment.
http://www.usconstitution.net...

4. ThinkProgress2. "Ted Olson Interview With Fox News Sunday's Chris Wallace." YouTube. (Link in comments).

5. http://www.inthelifetv.org...

shift4101

Con

shift4101 forfeited this round.
Debate Round No. 3
Mr.Infidel

Pro

My opponent has sadly forfeited this round. I hearby urge a vote for the affirmative as my arguments stand.

Summary

I'd like to summarize my arguments before I close this debate for the voting period.

1) The purpose of marriage

I have shown that the purpose of state recognized marriage is to facilitate public order by organizign individuals into cohesive families; develop a realm or liberty and free decision making by spouces; and to create a stable household.

2) The harm principle

I have shown that gay marriage does not harm anyone. Therefore, there is no reason for the majority to impose morality on the minority.

3) The utility factor

I have shown that marriage brings benefits, which include financial benefits; and would thereby give gays a more stable household in which to live.

4) Benefits everyone

I have shown that there are both social and economic benefits to legalization of same-sex marriage.

5) Children

I have shown same-sex couples are just as capable of raising children as their heterosexual counterparts.

6) 14th amendment

I have shown that there are over 1,000 rights denied to same-sex couples and thus it is a blatant violation of the constitutional amendment.

I thank my opponent for a lively debate. I thereby urge a vote for the affirmative (PRO) side as my arguments stand.

Thanks!
shift4101

Con

shift4101 forfeited this round.
Debate Round No. 4
7 comments have been posted on this debate. Showing 1 through 7 records.
Posted by Mr.Infidel 5 years ago
Mr.Infidel
That's fine.
Posted by shift4101 5 years ago
shift4101
I'm sorry, but I'm not going to be able to reply for this round.
Posted by Mr.Infidel 5 years ago
Mr.Infidel
Shift, when will your arguments be up?
Posted by Mr.Infidel 5 years ago
Mr.Infidel
Fixed
Posted by Ore_Ele 5 years ago
Ore_Ele
You said at the end of your round, to not accept this unless you are willing to "defend the anti-gay marriage position." By saying "the" anti-gay marriage position, you are basically stating that there is a singular one to be defended, as opposed to saying "an" anti-gay marriage position, which is basically saying that you can defend any one of several.
Posted by Mr.Infidel 5 years ago
Mr.Infidel
What do you mean?
Posted by Ore_Ele 5 years ago
Ore_Ele
Define "the anti-gay marriage position."

Surely Con only needs to argue that SSM should not be legalized, and so long as the argument makes sense, whether it is a common argument or not doesn't matter.
3 votes have been placed for this debate. Showing 1 through 3 records.
Vote Placed by lotus_flower 5 years ago
lotus_flower
Mr.Infidelshift4101Tied
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Total points awarded:60 
Reasons for voting decision: con used about.com, pro OBVIOUSLY defeated him, and con forfeited 2 rounds.
Vote Placed by thett3 5 years ago
thett3
Mr.Infidelshift4101Tied
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Total points awarded:70 
Reasons for voting decision: Forfeiting 2 rounds out of a 3 round debate= auto loss.
Vote Placed by Davididit 5 years ago
Davididit
Mr.Infidelshift4101Tied
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Total points awarded:70 
Reasons for voting decision: Forfeit.