The Instigator
debatefan01
Pro (for)
Losing
14 Points
The Contender
TheSkeptic
Con (against)
Winning
33 Points

Gay Marriage should not be legal

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Post Voting Period
The voting period for this debate has ended.
after 7 votes the winner is...
TheSkeptic
Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 11/30/2008 Category: Politics
Updated: 8 years ago Status: Post Voting Period
Viewed: 3,675 times Debate No: 6091
Debate Rounds (4)
Comments (25)
Votes (7)

 

debatefan01

Pro

The discussion over whether the state ought to recognize gay marriage has thus far focused on the issue as one of civil rights. This argument is erroneous because the state recognition of marriage is not a universal right. States regulate marriage in many ways besides denying couples of the same sex from marrying. Many states prohibit first cousins from marrying, and all prohibit marriage of closer blood relatives, even if the individuals being married are sterile. In all states, it is illegal to attempt to marry more than one person. and some states restrict the marriage of people suffering from syphilis or other diseases. Homosexuals, therefore, are not the only people to be denied the right to marry the person of their choosing. Many groups and types of people are denied this union.

I bring these people up to illustrate that marriage is heavily regulated, and for good reason. When a state recognizes a marriage, it bestows upon the wedded couple select benefits which are costly to the state. Married couples can collect their dead spouse's social security entitlements, be covered under their spouse's health insurance plan, and claim an additional tax exempt status for a spouse. Basically, a married couple receives a subsidy. Why? Because a marriage between two unrelated heterosexuals is more likely to result in a family with children than that marriage between two unrelated homosexuals. The propagation of society is a compelling state interest and it is for that reason that states have kept marriage from couples unlikely to produce children.

Does this mean that we should exclude all people who cannot propagate society? Simply put: no. A small minority of married couples are infertile but excluding them from marriage would be too bothersome. Of the few sterile couples who are married, few of the spouses know they are sterile. Furthermore, with fertility tests being way too expensive and burdensome to mandate and force upon all potentially sterile couples, states choose to let them marry. On blood relatives: Some argue that the exclusion of blood relatives from marriage is only necessary to prevent the conception of genetically defective children but blood relatives still cannot marry even if they undergo a sterilization process. There are even some couples who marry plan not to have children, but since the State does not know whether or not John and Jill will have kids, excluding them is impossible. Some still point to the elderly and the fact that they cannot help propagate society and while that is true, such cases are so rare that it is simply not worth the effort by the State to restrict them. The marriage laws help to insure, though not without flaw, that the vast majority of couples that receive the benefits from being legally married are those same couples who will bear children.

Homosexual relationships do absolutely nothing to serve the state interest of propagating society. Unless these marriages serve some other "state" interest, there is no reason for the state to bestow upon them the costly benefits of marriage. The burden of proof is currently on the advocates of gay marriage to show what state interest these marriages serve. So far, this burden has not been met as all we hear from the gay activists is that this is about "gay rights". Show me where it says on the law books that marriage is a right to be bestowed upon on all couples who "feel the love." You cannot, as no such law exists.

On the issue of homosexual couples and propagation, one may argue that lesbians are capable of procreating via artificial insemination, so the state does have an interest in recognizing lesbian marriages. Ok, that sounds good until you recognize the fact that a lesbian's sexual relationship, committed in a marriage or not, has no bearing on her ability to reproduce. A lesbian can propagate society without needing marriage so again, there is no reason to bestow costly unions there. Perhaps it may serve a state interest to recognize gay marriages to make it easier for gay couples to adopt. However there is research being done that suggests children need both a male and female parent for proper development. Statistics become flawed as small sample sizes and other methodological problems make it impossible to draw conclusions from studies that directly examine the effects of gay parenting. There are just too many variables to accurately come to a definitive conclusion on the positives and negatives from gay parenting. However, the common wisdom about the importance of a mother and father in a child's development should at least bring advocates of gay adoption to a pause. The differences between men and women extend beyond anatomical structure and can be found in societal roles. Society has been founded upon a heterosexual family culture and unit and that practice has extended into every aspect of life. It therefore becomes essential for a child to be nurtured by parents of both sexes if a child is to learn to function in a society made up of both sexes. Let us be clear: I would never say that gays are bad parents or that they would necessarily make their children gay, but they cannot provide a set of parents that includes both a male and a female.

Some have compared the prohibition of homosexual marriage to the prohibition of interracial marriage. This analogy fails because fertility does not depend on race, making race irrelevant to the state's interest in marriage. By contrast, homosexuality is highly relevant because it precludes procreation.

Some argue that homosexual marriages serve a state interest because they enable gays to live in committed relationships. However, there is nothing stopping homosexuals from living in such relationships. Advocates of gay marriage claim gay couples need marriage in order to have hospital visitation and inheritance rights, but they can easily obtain these rights by writing a living will and having each partner designate the other as trustee and heir. There is nothing stopping gay couples from signing a joint lease or owning a house jointly, as many single straight people do with roommates. The only benefits of marriage from which homosexual couples are restricted are those that are costly to taxpayers.

Some argue that the link between marriage and procreation is not as strong as it once was, and they are correct. Until recently, the primary purpose of marriage in every society around the world has been procreation. Recently, Western societies have downplayed the procreative aspect of marriage, much to our detriment. As a result, the happiness of the parties to the marriage, rather than the good of the children or the social order, has become its primary end, with disastrous consequences. When married persons care more about themselves than their responsibilities to their children and society, they become more willing to abandon these responsibilities, leading to broken homes, a plummeting birthrate, and countless other social pathologies that have become rampant over the last 40 years. Homosexual marriage is not the cause for any of these pathologies, but it will exacerbate them, as the granting of marital benefits to a category of sexual relationships that are not reproducing can only widen the separation between marriage and procreation.

The biggest danger homosexual civil marriage presents is the enshrining into law the notion that sexual love, regardless of its fecundity, is the sole criterion for marriage. If the state must recognize a marriage of two men simply because they love one another, upon what basis can it deny marital recognition to a group of two men and three women, for example, or a sterile brother and sister who claim to love each other? When the purpose of marriage is procreation, the answer is obvious. If sexual love becomes the primary purpose, the restriction of marriage to couples loses its logical basis, leading to marital chaos and financial burdens on all taxpaye
TheSkeptic

Con

I thank my opponent for once again starting one of my more favorite debate topics. Hope it goes well! *NOTE* - By "gay", I am referring to the LGBT(Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender) community [1].

My opponent's main argument hinges on one thing: marriage is for procreation by giving economic stability to Rheterosexual couples and their families. I will demonstrate why this is an inadequate argument, and will list out my opponent's arguments in a 123 format, and any sub-points in an ABC format.

~Counterarguments~

1. Marriage is for an unrelated heterosexual couple to have children and become economically stable as a family.

My opponent is true when he claims that marriage helps bring economic stability to a heterosexual couple who starts a family. He is also true when he claims that this will lead to more children. However, he is false when he states that this is the reason why gays shouldn't be allowed to marry. The origin of marriage is before recorded history, but in the early times marriage was more of a business transaction between families. A father would marry his daughter off to a richer family for reasons including personal gain and reputation [2]. Marriage, however, has come a long ways since it's conception. The period of Ancient Rome is drastically different from 21st century America. As such, marriage has evolved from being a business transaction to much more of a personal agreement between lovers. Just because marriage might have been a tool for society to survive does NOT mean it should be the same for now. To say that marriage should only be allowed to those who can procreate because it's origins were such is committing the genetic fallacy [3]. So it brings me to these points:

A) If marriage should be only for those who can "procreate and propagate society", then why not allow polygamous marriages? I don't know about you, but my math says when you have more than 2 spouses + action in bed = more children ;D

B) Tell me, what is the difference between a private relationship and a marriage? Nothing much really, just three things - financial benefit, religious purposes, tradition. Now for the purpose of society, I would imagine you would say that only financial benefit is concerned. So we both agree that a marriage can help lovers become more financially stable and contribute more to society. Now realize this: can't gay people financially contribute to society? Of course they can! They have jobs, they make money, they pay bills, and they bring in the pork. They are as financially beneficial to society as any other type of couple. So in fact, if we ALLOW gay marriages, then by your same reasoning this will give GAY couples MORE financial stability, which leads to MORE societal benefits. Isn't this what you were basing your argument off of?

C) WHY should marriage only exist to benefit the needs of society?

2. Gay parenting

This argument is completely irrelevant because adopting kids is a separate matter from legal marriage. So my opponent's long paragraphs pertaining to this point are both erroneous and irrelevant.

3. Slippery Slopes

My opponent actually made two slippery slope arguments (or fallacies I dare say). He stresses the more common one, that if we legalize gay marriage then why not the other forms of marriage. But he slipped in a quite hilarious passage talking about how the supposed downfall of marriage leads to "disastrous consequences" for society.

A) "Recently, Western societies have downplayed the procreative aspect of marriage, much to our detriment. As a result, the happiness of the parties to the marriage, rather than the good of the children or the social order, has become its primary end, with disastrous consequences. When married persons care more about themselves than their responsibilities to their children and society, they become more willing to abandon these responsibilities, leading to broken homes, a plummeting birthrate, and countless other social pathologies that have become rampant over the last 40 years."

----> It is my opponent's HEAVY BURDEN to demonstrate why less emphasis on the procreative aspect of marriage leads to "social pathologies that have become rampant over the last 40 years". Besides, can't people procreate outside of marriage? Of course, unless you would argue that there is some divine lock on sex outside of marriage, which I dare say will be an even heavier burden.

B) I propose that all marriages involving consenting adults be legalized. So yes, there goes polygamy, incest, and other fun consenting adult-like marriages you can think of. THROW 'EM AT ME!

~Conclusion~

I have refuted my opponent's main three points. I have shown why even if marriage should be for propagating a society's needs, legalizing gay marriage is still beneficial. I have shown why both of my opponent's slippery slope arguments fail or have yet to meet their burden.

*NOTE* - I skipped/didn't refer to some of my opponent's paragraphs because they were really just responses to possible argument against anti-gay marriage advocates. I didn't and wouldn't argue that gay marriage should be legalized because interracial marriages do, lesbians can inseminate, etc. I never supplied these arguments so his refutations are of no use.

---References---
1. http://www.gaycenter.org...
2. http://www2.hu-berlin.de...
3. http://en.wikipedia.org...
Debate Round No. 1
debatefan01

Pro

debatefan01 forfeited this round.
TheSkeptic

Con

As is evident from this forfeit and the comment's sections, my opponent as of now has not supplied a counterargument, and will likely not. Until then, extend all my arguments to this round.
Debate Round No. 2
debatefan01

Pro

debatefan01 forfeited this round.
TheSkeptic

Con

As is evident from the comments section and this second forfeit, extend all my arguments to this round. And remember kids, vote for CON!
Debate Round No. 3
debatefan01

Pro

debatefan01 forfeited this round.
TheSkeptic

Con

And that's that folks! Unless you don't have at least a drip of intelligence in your body, or your just a vote-bomber, VOTE CON!
Debate Round No. 4
25 comments have been posted on this debate. Showing 1 through 10 records.
Posted by jjmd280 8 years ago
jjmd280
Proof that vote bombing DOES work - good job debatefan01!!
Posted by Mangani 8 years ago
Mangani
I didn't read the entire debate after realizing Pro forfeited 3 of four rounds, but his entire first argument is full of logical fallacies and contradictions.

Examples: Marriage is a benefit for the state if propagation is ensured; yet not all married heterosexual couples can reproduce; lesbians can reproduce out of wedlock. Guess what? Heterosexuals can reproduce out of wedlock as well.

His entire first paragraph is devoted to justifying regulation of marriage by stating marriage is regulated. First paragraph is argumentum ad antiquitatem, or appeal to tradition.

His second paragraph is baseless. Fallacy of false cause. He is incorrectly assuming that the state recognizes heterosexual marriage because it is financially beneficial to the state to do so.

His third paragraph undermines his premise. He says gay marriage is not about civil rights because other non-propagational marriages are equally restricted, but then volunteers several examples of where that is not the case.

His fourth paragraph is an appeal to authority- "there is no law that says so, therefore it is not so".

Paragraph Five- Pro presents the false dilemma (another logical fallacy) of heterosexual and homosexual parents. Heterosexual marriage does not ensure that children resulting from that marriage will have a male and a female parent, and homosexual marriage does not bar the possibility of having a male and female parent.

Paragraph six- he attempts to eliminate an argument for gay marriage by stating the false dilemma of procreation, and implying that procreation is the only relevant comparison when evaluating interracial vs. gay marriage. The point gays try to make here is that marriage is a contract between consenting adults- not between the adults and the state, or a church. Their argument has nothing to do with procreation.

I know TheSkeptic had this under control, but it is clear Pro had no ground under his feet whatsoever... All points Con. Obviously.
Posted by jjmd280 8 years ago
jjmd280
All points to skeptic.
Posted by TheSkeptic 8 years ago
TheSkeptic
No problem, if you want to pick up this debate some other time I'd be glad to accept a challenge :)
Posted by debatefan01 8 years ago
debatefan01
Yeah...I am going to have to end this debate as well...I have a tourni to prep for this friday, sat, and sun. and school finals the following week.

I do want to continue this debate after school gets out...what do you think?
Posted by fo-shizzle0855 8 years ago
fo-shizzle0855
skeptic, nice formatting and use of references. I dont agree with you on the topic, however depending on how the formality goes i might vote for you to you half of the points. Debatefan yours was good too.
Posted by fo-shizzle0855 8 years ago
fo-shizzle0855
I totally agree with you. Sorry no offence bellalouise but in these types of debates you need
EVIDENCE. You can't just go on your feelings. It helps to be a little bit more educated about the topic
Posted by debatefan01 8 years ago
debatefan01
Oh...poor little Bellalouise.....I will turn your own argument against you.

Firstly, marriage is a legal contract that the state can choose to recognize; it does not (from a constitutional standpoint) have anything to do with happiness and feelings.

That being said....if you are arguing that it's their right to happiness...what about the happiness of the people WHO HAVE TO ACCEPT GAY MARRIAGE WHO ARE AGAINST IT.

ARE THERE NOT MORE PEOPLE WHO are against gay marriage than for it?

Yep.

That means, should gay marriage be legalized; you HAVE VIOLATED THEIR PURSUIT OF HAPPINESS.

I personally think that the pursuit of happiness thing is no good argument but even then I win on that account because your way would violate the happiness OF MANY MORE PEOPLE as opposed to mine which would do that to A SMALL MINORITY.....

Thank you, come again!
Posted by Bellalouise 8 years ago
Bellalouise
If we don't let gays and lesbians marry, we are invading on their right to "pursuit of happiness", and when you do that, troubles arise, questions form, arguments begin to fume. I think that they should be allowed to marry, because if it makes them happy then that's great! and honestly, we need more happy people in the world.

P.s. the word "gay" means happy, does it not?
Posted by PoeJoe 8 years ago
PoeJoe
Protip: To set the clock back to seven days, the instigator must only change a single attribute of the debate. Then, five seconds later, change it back... and walah! That's how I kept my monkeyyxxsun challenge going for so long.
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