The Instigator
kenballer
Pro (for)
Winning
9 Points
The Contender
Stephen_Hawkins
Con (against)
Losing
0 Points

Gay marriage is not a civil right

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Post Voting Period
The voting period for this debate has ended.
after 4 votes the winner is...
kenballer
Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 6/10/2012 Category: Society
Updated: 4 years ago Status: Post Voting Period
Viewed: 5,256 times Debate No: 21180
Debate Rounds (5)
Comments (7)
Votes (4)

 

kenballer

Pro

FIRST ROUND WILL JUST BE FOR ACCEPTANCE AND RULES ONLY

In this debate, I will explain how gay marriage is not a civil right as part of my argument.

Then, If my opponent attempts to provide arguments for gay marriage to shift the burden of proof another way, I will also show how its detrimental to society to redefine the purpose of marriage to counter it.
Stephen_Hawkins

Con

I accept, based on the following assumptions:

Gay marriage is meant as synonymous to Same Sex Marriage.
Civil Right is a right that is given to one by being a member of a community.
This constitutes a policy / moral debate, not a factual one. The is does not mean this debate is on the disagreement of the fact that it is, in some places, not a civil right.
The debate has no geographic leaning, but assumed to be regarding a modern first world country (a Western European / North American country, for example)
Plagiarism from anywhere of any kind without citation results in an instant forfeit. Citing or quotations should not consist of more than 50% of the entire argument, in order to promote
The Burden of Proof is on my opponent, due to his acceptance of "gay marriage is not a civil right [being] part of my argument".

Any disagreements with these things should be posted to prior the argument. Any enfraction of the rules after acceptance means an instant loss. Any challenge to the definitions do not count as 'instant loss', but a semantic debate should be frowned upon, and loss of conduct if something is redefined for no reason, or redefined for inadequate reasons.
Debate Round No. 1
kenballer

Pro

One modification of CON's rules. Since I have the burden of proof at the moment and we are dealing with civil rights and not necessarily human rights, the laws are going to mainly reflect the United States and lean towards it. This was what I was planning on doing when I opened the debate. Our constitution may not have a legal effect in the UK but it does in spirit because many of the nations and the courts are influenced by the U.S. supreme court and the U.S. constitution.

THE DUE PROCESS CLAUSE

The U.S. Supreme Court has always defined marriage to be between a man and a woman for the continuation of society and never did they say that the fundamental right to marry included same sex marriage. In fact, the Supreme Court rejected the existence of such definitions or rights in the past and said there is no fundamental right to gay marriage .

After the Loving decision, The U.S. Supreme Court in Baker v. Nelson in 1972 regarding the issue of Same sex marriage endorsed a Minnesota supreme court decision. The case will show you that the same court in Loving v Virginia not only distinguished same sex marriage from interracial marriage, but established it as a right that does not exist under the constitution and never did. They also rejected and refuted many of the same arguments gay activists make today [1]:

"The institution of marriage as a union man and woman, uniquely involving the procreation and rearing of children within a family, is as old as the book of Genesis. Skinner V. Oklahoma ex rel. Williamson, 316 U.S. 535, 541, 62 S.Ct. 1110, 1113, 86 L.Ed. 1655, 1660 (1942), which invalidated Oklahoma's Habitual Criminal Sterilization Act on equal protection grounds, stated in part: "Marriage and procreation are fundamental to the very existence and survival of the race." This historic institution manifestly is more deeply founded than the asserted contemporary concept of marriage and societal interests for which petitioners contend. The due process clause of the Fourteenth Amendment is not a charter for RESTRUCTURING it by judicial LEGISLATION."

As you can see, Marriage wouldn't be "fundamental" to the "existence" and "survival" of humanity if it was completely delinked from procreation or had nothing to do with reproductive potential. There are also plenty of state and federal courts that mention Baker as a U.S. SCOTUS ruling [2]. Marriage is the regulation of procreation and rearing of children. This has been deemed the most compelling of ALL compelling state interests by the U.S. supreme court several more times. Let me explain precisely why this is the case:

The Purpose of CIVIL Marriage:

The traditional view of marriage is based on the anatomical possibility or "natural teleology of the body" where only a man and a woman, and only two people, not three, can generate a child and raise the child through the natural complimentary element of both genders.

Procreation and rearing of children is a biologically driven act that happens either by choice or by accident [3]. The state regulates this by encouraging procreation and child-rearing to take place within a marriage. This is done in order to make sure they do not procreate and rear children in an unstable environment if they end up producing a family either by choice or by accident .

The Means to Achieve this Purpose:

The state uses the traditional idea of marriage ,as a means to achieve this purpose, in order to encourage heterosexual couples to obtain a marriage license. Then, the state issues marriage licenses in order to reinforce this meaning of marriage and ,as a result, provide legal and social support for their relationships. There are two theories about the definition of marriage that potentially helps to achieve this purpose:

A. The Responsible Procreation Theory

The responsible procreation theory involves establishing family stablity where the state encourages heterosexual couples to procreate and/or rear their children in a environment that is best situated to raise children [4]. Family stability is about how many transitions in the environment the child may experience during the child development process.

There is empirical evidence that supports this theory. In terms of the selection process, Studies show that people, who cohabit, compared to those who don't, have less traditional ideals or views of marriage. Then, according to other studies, they would not only be more likely to cohabit but more likely to divorce from prior cohabitation. [5]

B. The Optimal partnership theory

The optimal partnership theory involves establishing family structure where the state promotes the ideal partnership between two biological married parents. Family structure is about who the child is being raised with during the child development process.

There is also empirical evidence supporting this theory. Almost Every study demonstrates that children from two biological parents fare better in every category of social and psychological measurement. They are less likely to be poor, to exhibit behavioral problems, to struggle in school etc. than children in any other living arrangement [6].

Therefore, it does not matter whether the cause of the good child outcomes from couples is based on the idea of traditional marriage that people believe in or the physical experience of marriage. It would still be warranted for the state to use and promote a traditonal notion of marriage to ensure a stable home for children.

WHAT ABOUT INFERTILE COUPLES?

The Fundamental right to marry:

Since Marriage between a man and a woman has been held to be a fundamental right, a law excluding infertile heterosexual couples would be constitutionally unenforceable. The state couldn't survive strict scrutiny since it would be overinclusive and not narrowly tailored. There are two more reasons why they allow the infertile to marry along with any other scenario dealing with heterosexual couples.

Responsible Procreation:

In order to actually know that couples are in fact infertile, the state would have to resort to intrusive fertility tests in order to establish that they are unable to have children. However, therapy and the availability of long-term fertility may reverse the prognosis (even in post menopausal women) making it medically impossible to fully establish infertility. Not to mention, the state would have to check almost every single couple that wants a marriage license. This clearly would take a large amount of resources to accomplish. Thus, it's costly, impractical, and unconstitutional. The law rightly assumes a presumption of reproductive and child rearing potential on the part of heterosexual couples.

Marriage:

As I explained before, Our marriage laws are there to shape culture and culture shapes conduct. Allowing infertile heterosexuals to marry does not attempt to take away the law's ability to recruit and influence the culture of heterosexuals who are "fertile" to make sure they create and/or raise their offspring's in a stable environment. Moreover, the state cannot promote responsible procreation and rearing of children without referencing and acknowledging the traditional definition of marriage because it's the only union that can perform this particular action.

Therefore, infertile couples (or ANY other heterosexual scenario) do not change the definition and challenge the intention of the marriage institution. This is because the definition of marriage (the means) and the purpose of it (the ends) are synonymous.

Next round, I will get to the equal protection clause

http://www.cas.umt.edu...
http://en.wikipedia.org...
http://www.cdc.gov...
http://www.ca8.uscourts.gov... 10,11
http://eprints.qut.edu.au... 2
http://www.urban.org... Gates
Stephen_Hawkins

Con

I reject the requirement of a geographical leaning in the US, due to the fact that it was not stipulated before, and therefore would be changing the parameters of the debate. Further, I also point out my opponent's entire argument was simply a c/p from previous work, which falls under a breaking of the rules I mentioned previously.

As such, I reject the Due Process clause issue, due to it being purely an American definition. Of course, if my opponent wishes to actually claim this should hold value for other countries, he should justify it. Of course, I can (and shall now due to the obvious way this clash shall go) refer him to the Natural Justice of the Ridge v Baldwin case, and state that equality is naturally just under the judiciary. Further, Parliamentary majority has said, albeit outside of official parliamentary voting, time and time again that they wish SSM to be legal. Further, American laws do not affect world laws anymore than British law does. In fact, British law is arguably more impacting due to the effect of the EU and stronger diplomatic ties, but that is for another debate. However, I realise my opponent wants to make it American only, so he can use his tried and tested (and failed) argument, which he has copied and used 3 times already.

Further, as per traditional rules, I shall post my argument in favour first. This means that it may or may not address my opponent's points directly, but shall pose my own argument.

Introduction

My opponent puts forth an entirely traditionalist view of marriage. The problem of this marriage is on multiple grounds. Firstly, it states marriage is for "procreation and child-rearing". This means that marriage is "a permanent and exclusive commitment to each other of the type that is naturally fulfilled by bearing and rearing children together"[1]. I wish to show two things in my argument: firstly, that the revisionist position of marriage is more accurate, followed by how, even in the traditionalist view of marriage, SSM should be legalised.

The purpose of marriage

As we well know, the purpose of marriage was child rearing and procreation. I do not deny that this used to be the definition of marriage. However, the purpose of marriage was not twofold, but onefold. It has a single purpose. The phrase 'child rearing and procreation' is one that is popular, but is it applicable in modern society? In a society where those needing adoption is at an all-time high[2], and sociologists criticising endlessly about how the high population is causing massively detrimental effects on society[3], do we need to continue ferverously promoting procreation? It is, surely, more reasonable to promote childrearing? But marriage also has a third effect which traditionalists wish to ignore, which are traced back to it's Sumerian roots over 5000 years ago: the loving union it creates that is officially recognised and respected. We know this through a number of ways from unofficial polls[4] to religious groups commenting[5] to professional commentators[6]. Some put forth the idea that marriage is to benefit children instead[7] as well. I shall address this point in a moment.

I want to point out a quotation about the definition of marriage being purely procreation: “Marriage is not fundamental to our ‘existence’ and ‘survival’ merely because it sometimes is marked by expressions of love, commitment, and respect. Marriage is fundamental to our existence and survival because it remains society’s best and most effective way of ordering sexual relations between men and women, encouraging procreation, and increasing the odds that a child will have the influence and support of both a mother and a father.” -- Thomas Messner[8]

The point is, marriage is not fundamental to society. If we did not have marriage (and we did not for a long time) the human race still trots on. If we leglised SSM, the human race still trots on.

The purpose of marriage is love, not war procreation. If it were procreation, then we have an issue: my opponent has decided to abandon the actual purpose of marriage due to its impracticality. If marriage was legal for those unable to reproduce because "it's costly" or "impractical", then we have abandoned the actual purpose of marriage for these reasons. It's like saying you support the red sock (I believe that's a football team in America) but because the black sock is cheaper, you wear the black sock. That means you don't support the red sock, you're supporting the black sock.

Procreation among the homosexual community

The homosexual community being unable to procreate is something that my opponent is claiming to be impossible is an underlying fundamental premise to his argument, which, if proven false, undermines and defeats the entire argument. I am stating this now because, if my opponent cannot refute this, his argument is prima facie wrong. The thing is though, homosexuals can reproduce.

Of course, they cannot reproduce in a natural way. Similar to those who are infertile (which can be established with extreme ease, by the way: you take a sperm sample, and you take an egg sample. Simple.), they have access to IVF treatments and surrogacy[9]. These aren't science-fiction events: these are real. I am simply pointing out the facts now, those who are in a homosexual relationship can have children, and many have. Marriage has been stated to promote children, and SSM couples are just as well off, if not better[11,12]. Thus, marriage is better for the children, and allows marriage in society.

The democratic agreement

Finally, we live in a democracy. This means we get the option as citizens to vote on what we want. The voting allows us to run society, and allows the majority to make decisions on this issue. As it does not have any prima facie effects of discriminating against people in society, then the polls should be able to be used to decide what to do. And what do the polls say?

SSM USA Poll.


The polls are loud, the polls are clear: democracy should be in action, and my opponent is attempting to undermine a fundamental foundation of our society.

To conclude

SSM promotes children. SSM promotes strong, loving relationships. SSM is promoted by democracy. SSM promotes the purpose of marriage, that is, to create strong, secure settings for children to be raised, and an acknowledged commitment between two loving people. For these reasons, I suggest a vote in favour of common sense, equality and democracy, and vote CON.

1 - What is Marriage? By Sherif Girgis et al, accessed 13/06/12, http://tinyurl.com...
2 - http://www.bbc.co.uk...
3 - http://www.populationpress.org...
4 - http://surveycentral.org...
5 - http://www.catholicculture.org...
6 - http://www.patheos.com...
7 - http://www.news-record.com...#
8 - http://thenewcivilrightsmovement.com...
9 - http://www.fertility-docs.com...
10 - http://www.telegraph.co.uk...
11 - http://www.concordmonitor.com...
12 http://www.tandfonline.com...;
& http://www.livescience.com...;

Debate Round No. 2
kenballer

Pro

I did not plagarize. This is my own work and I made the necessary citations. So I don't know what CON is talking about, he can't just make baseless assertions like this.

Nevertheless,The nature of my arguments can still apply anywhere and to this resolution because I don't just say that gay marriage is not a civil right merely based on what the government and courts have randomly declared. I explain the moral and philosophical aspects behind it. For example, from the Universal Declaration of Human rights:

"Article 16
1.Men and women of full age, without any limitation due to race, nationality or religion, have the right to marry and to found a FAMILY. They are entitled to equal rights as to marriage, during marriage and at its dissolution.

3.The FAMILY is the NATURAL and fundamental group unit of society and is entitled to protection by society and the State. " [1]

(If you noticed, it never said without any limitation due to GENDER and the ARTIFICIAL family. Con even admitted that gay families are not naturally produced)

Therefore, Gay marriage is not a civil right because the purpose of civil marriage involves the procreation and rearing of children. Its something that only a man and woman can do. This is why civil marriage is a civil human right. In addition, since this is what civil marriage "is", it logically follows that gay marriage cannot be an equal right as well. Let me explain how and why:

EQUAL PROTECTION CLAUSE

Since civil marriage has always been defined between one man and one woman for responsible procreation and rearing of children, this is not about whether a law banning same sex marriage is constitutional or unconstitutional. The legal issue that is before us is whether traditional marriage laws are based on invidious, arbitrary, discrimination.

Discrimination: " The equal protection clause is not intended to provide "equality" among individuals or classes but only "equal application" of the laws. The result, therefore, of a law is not relevant so long as there is no discrimination in its application. By denying states the ability to discriminate, the equal protection clause of the Constitution is crucial to the protection of civil rights.

Generally, the question of whether the equal protection clause has been violated arises when a state grants a particular class of individuals the right to engage in an activity yet denies other individuals the same right." [2]

1. Sex Equality

Bans on interracial marriage were about the segregation of protected classes ,which has been deemed in the Brown decision to be another form of discrimination. When it comes to the Sexes, The Supreme Court has never ruled integration to be a form of discrimination. Thus, there is no discrimination between the sexes because men and woman can equally marry someone of the opposite sex.

2. Sexual Orientation Equality

Traditional marriage laws do not violate the equal protection clause because providing a separate institution like civil unions to same sex couples has been deemed constitutional on basis of sex (with some conditions of course). For example, We have separate but equal situations for men and women that permeate our country ranging from restrooms, the military, prisons, sport teams, and even separate but equal public schools. We have this even though women are a minority that historically have been discriminated against.

In a case called Vorcheimer v. Philadelphia school District, the Supreme Court ruled, that "Separate" is essentially "Equal". As long as each gender equally has a choice in going to both schools for both genders and that, interests in creating separateness based on the biological differences grounded in sex and GENDER are a legitimate state interests.[3]

In United States v. Virginia , the court agreed with this rationale as well:

"Had Virginia made a genuine effort to devote comparable public resources to a facility for women, and followed through on such a plan, it might well have avoided an equal protection violation."[4]"it is not the 'exclusion of women' that violates the Equal Protection Clause, but the maintenance of an all-men school without providing any -- much less a comparable -- institution for women... It would be a sufficient remedy, I think, if the two institutions offered the same quality of education and were of the same overall caliber."

Obviously, this is deemed constitutional because there is a fundamental difference between race and sex. This is why we no longer have bans on interracial marriage or have Jim Crow laws but still have and always accepted apartheid for the sexes and define marriage between one man and one woman.

JUSTICE UNDER THE LAW

Now, if they were being discriminated against, the existence of an infringing liberty or equal right would not automatically make a law unconstitutional. However, Let's pretend for the sake of argument we are discriminating on same sex couples or gay individuals. I will even pretend that they are a suspect class ,which would require passing strict scrutiny from my side. Even if this is the case, my arguments would still pass the strict scrutiny test and justify the discrimination. I showed earlier how there's a compelling state interest for traditional marriage laws; now I will show how they are fully narrowly tailored:

GAY MARRIAGE INTERFERES WITH THIS PURPOSE

My argument, in a nutshell against gay marriage is this, where the possibility of natural children is nil in law, the meaning of marriage is nil. If marriage is allowed between members of the same sex, then the concept of marriage has been emptied of content except to ask whether the parties love each other. There would be no reason to have public recognition of marriage. Let me explain precisely how and why:

If the state were to call same sex unions a marriage in conjunction with opposite sex couples, the law would publicly declare that, from now on, Marriage can be understood apart from responsible procreation and natural parenthood.

Since the well-being of children would no longer be a component of the concept of marriage, the social stigma within choices (like divorce, cohabitation, fatherlessness etc.), which serves as a natural deterrent, would decay and its effect would basically be eliminated. This is because marriage ends up ONLY becoming a matter of choice between consenting adults who want to express their love a certain way.

THE CLAIM THAT GAY MARRIAGE IS A CIVIL RIGHT

Not only would the state no longer be able to encourage incoming generations of heterosexuals to create stable environments, as I previously explained, but it would end up discouraging them as well.

If the traditional notion of marriage, which is defined as banning gay marriage by gay marriage advocates, continues to be compared or labeled as a form of slavery/bigotry akin to racism/homophobia and the state enforces this, then the likely hood of the next generation holding and practicing this idea of marriage in the future would be virtually impossible.

Therefore, since same sex couples are fundamentally different, an important governmental distinction between the two relationships would be reasonable in order to continue advancing this interest. The state can use the traditional definition to encourage procreation and rearing of children to take place inside a marriage to each generation while the state can encourage homosexuals to adopt and stay together with civil unions.

JUSTICE is applied EQUALLY in each case.

Now, I have established the "is" portion by showing that gay marriage "is" not a civil right. I will explain what we "ought" to do going forward regarding public policy and legislation in the next round.

[1] http://en.wikipedia.org...
[2] http://www.law.cornell.edu...
[3] http://law.justia.com...
[4] http://en.wikipedia.org...
Stephen_Hawkins

Con

My opponent's entire argument for this round is pointless. It is evident due to the fact that he has simply copied and pasted from a previous argument (which breaks round 1, where I say no copying from any source for this precise reason). As I stated that this debate is a moral debate, the is makes no difference. My opponent did not object. My opponent's R3 ends though with "Now, I have established the "is" portion by showing that gay marriage "is" not a civil right." Thus, it is clear, and is an admissal, that his last two rounds have meant nothing to the debate. Until he actually states which arguments he did not mean is part of a 'proving' that it is a civil right, or not a civil right, all of his previous is pointless.

Further, my opponent has dropped and conceded the democracy point. Therefore, this prima facie takes precedence, and negates the resolution.

Also, I accept that the Declaration of Human Rights does not state that SSM is a right for the purpose of this debate (though I dispute this), because it is irrelevant. My opponent has simply made red herrings (and admitted it so) due to what he had ended his argument with.

He states that he has some moral reasoning behind this, but it is yet to be seen. He has stated it is not discrimination, but I have not said this in the least: it is a red herring. I have not stated it is segregation. This is a red herring. I have not stated that it has a "separate but equal" problem. This is a red herring. My opponent has just misprepresented my case after misrepresenting my case. However, all these points are just defended by what the law says. He has simply said SSM currently is not a civil right. This is all a red herring. Due to this, I urge a conduct in my favour, due to this argument essentially being a complete drop, consisting of copy/paste on a different issue than what is raised.

However, seeing as I have 6000 characters to extend my case, I wish to promote a new one altogether: an ethical approach. I want to promote a Kantian Ethic system.

Kantian Ethics, created by Kant, uses 3 moral maxims to make all decisions. Firstly, that all actions should be universalised. Second, that all people should not be used as an ends, not a means. Thirdly, that we should therefore work towards a "kingdom of ends": a place where everyone is used as an ends, not a means.

The argument in favour of Kantian ethics comes from intuition. We actually know intrinsically that we should not use people as a means to an end. When we think of the trolley problem:

Suppose that a judge or magistrate is faced with rioters demanding that a culprit be found for a certain crime and threatening otherwise to take their own bloody revenge on a particular section of the community. The real culprit being unknown, the judge sees himself as able to prevent the bloodshed only by framing some innocent person and having him executed.

When we look at this case, we have an inherent leaning towards not committing the injustice of sentencing the culprit to no punishment, and let action take it's course. Indeed, from this Harvard lecture (youtube video), we can see how the majority, when presented with a similar problem, choose the options where we don't kill people. Allowing people to die is justified over actually killing people due to the immorality of forcing and imposing our will onto others. We also later see how people in majority accept the universalisability principle. Thus, we can conclude that Kantian Ethics' founding premises hold true.

Now, let us apply it here. How do we do so? We create a moral rule which can be applied in all circumstance (making it universalised) which is justified (not using others as a means only). For example, "We should punish murderers" may be justified because the ends is to punish a murderer, not to use murderers for punishment. But that is not enough to make it justified: it needs to be something that we do for duty's sake. We have duties like, for example, living in accordance with the moral maxims by being moral beings. Thus, by being moral autonomous agents, we need to live by moral maxims.

Now we have established what Kantian Ethics is, we can actually get to the heart of the issue: do we morally promote SSM or not? Well, let's create some moral maxims and see how they run. My opponent (clearly in R2) wants to create a moral maxim where "Marriage should be justified for those who will procreate and create good homes for children". However, this moral maxim has problems: it legalises polgyamy when it is a good home for a child (compared to an orphanage), legalises SSM if they have IVF or surrogacy, and other problems. If we do a different moral maxim which is closer in line to what my opponent is putting forth: "Marriage is justified only for those who will naturally procreate and create a good home for a child". However, the nature problem is incredibly large: we remove all IVF and surrogacy for one, then we have to remove all of those who are adopted. But a larger problem is that natural procreation can occur for polygomy still, and we have an even larger problem.

The only reliable solution is "Marriage is justified for those who want it". When marriage is allowed for all, we solve all of the problems. we still keep saying the actual statements themselves, such as paedophilia, are wrong, but the actual union itself seems to have no actual problems. But still, we need to add the previous necessity to create a construct for childrearing and stable relationships. With these, we have no problems for universalisation. "Marriage is justified for creating those who would be in a stable relationship with good childrearing". Each of these seem to create a system which is justified. The moral law means that things such as paedophilia are seen as wrong, but keeps IVF and surrogacy. It promotes the moral maxims of not using people as means, etcetera.

To reiterate and state an obvious criticism: of the three attributes of marriage we want to promote: secure relationships, procreation, and childrearing. The first and third are promoted. But procreation, if generalised into being a necessity, means that morally we cannot legalise marriage for those who may be impotent. But moreso we cannot legalise marriage due to it simply being a means to populate. This is blatantly immoral, and a horribly Machiavellian view of the world.

To conclude, all my criticisms from my previous argument stand. Further, Kantian ethics dictates that the moral course of action is to legalise SSM.
Debate Round No. 3
kenballer

Pro

Apparently, we are not on the same page here. Again, I am here to prove that gay marriage is not a civil right under the definition I provided of civil rights. Since the burden of proof was on me, My arguments were geared toward making my case NOT rebutting CON's case that gay marriage is a civil right.This is not simply a moral debate but a public policy debate as to whether or not we should make it into a civil right. Just like in the Dred Scott situation, Something can be a civil right but be proven morally incorrect or violate human rights. If I simply explained the "is" without the "ought", then I would commit the naturalistic fallacy. I would not be able to do one without the other.
This is why part of my argument was to show how gay marriage "is" not a civil right to provide context and understanding as to why we "ought" not to make it into civil right which is what I am about to do. However, since CON has completely misconstrued my argument let me first clear up the argument I made before.

THE TRADITIONAL VIEW OF MARRIAGE

I never said that the purpose of marriage is for procreation in the first place. Instead of a couple procreating naturally outside of marriage either by choice or by accident; I made it clear that the purpose of marriage is to encourage couples to procreate inside a marriage. The only couples that can do this action by choice or by accident is a man and a woman.

This is why our marriage laws regulate opposite-sex relationships by establishing a baseline definition of who is married. As a by-product, it provides a shared framework of concepts such as adultery, remarriage, divorce, etc. to be understood. Moreover, We come to know how these choices and situations can be detrimental for families as a result.

For example, The mere appearance of a green/ red traffic signals helps us know when to make the right choice to drive so drivers won't harm themselves and others. Now, our understanding that green light means "go" encourages to drive and red light means "stop" to discourage us from driving. Our understanding that marriage is between a man and a woman encourages us to procreate inside a marriage and not outside of it.

In short, This is moral rule which can be applied in all circumstances (making it universalised) which is justified (not using others as a means only), which fits right into Kantian ethics. The law does not make us do right from wrong but helps us understand what is right and wrong regarding the well-being of children. Whether or not we choose to do what's right is entirely our choice. This is done to maintain order in the public arena in both situations. Now, Are traffic signals also a situation where the state is imposing someone's morality or will? I think not but according to CON, that seems to be the case.

CON'S REVISIONIST VIEW OF MARRIAGE

I have already shown how redefining marriage to just two people would remove two of the three attributes of promoting marriage CON spoke of . Now, even though CON's alternate view of marriage does not remove secure relationships from the idea of marriage, CON never explains how including same sex couples into the definition would strengthen the bond and love between heterosexuals in marriages, which would create a better environments for children.

Moreover, The revisionist view of marriage is overinclusive and underinclusive. Douglas Allen , in his book called "An economic assessment of same-sex marriage laws" [1] said it best :

"Many people love one another in both sacrificial and sexual ways (for example, cohabitants, polygamists, homosexuals), but are not married. At the same time, there are loveless marriages in which love, though once present, no longer exists, and arranged marriages in which love is not present at the beginning. Historically, love played almost no role in marriage; matches were arranged between kinship groups."

When it comes to democracy and the Gallup poll, The only poll that matters is the BALLOT box and Last time I checked 32-32 states rejected gay marriage with the last two states (California and Maine) that voted being the most liberal states in the nation. This reveals that people do not accept CON's view of marriage but the traditional view of marriage.

GAY SO-CALLED MARRIAGE IS DETRIMENTAL TO SOCIETY

In the previous rounds, My arguments established the "is" portion by showing that gay marriage "is" not a civil right. Now, we are at the "ought" portion regarding public policy and legislation. I will explain why it should not be made into a civil right as part of why its not a civil right. Civil rights are about fairness and justice. They govern behavior to make sure we have order[2]. The concept of gay marriage does not provide fairness nor is just and it potentially creates disorder if we consider making it into a Civil right.

LONG TERM EFFECTS OF REDEFINING MARRIAGE

The Social ramifications:

Based on the arguments and studies I mentioned in Round 1&2 involving the promotion of non-traditional views of marriage and discouraging traditional views of marriage as well; it logically follows that vulnerable future generations, will be programmed to formulate choices (like divorce, fatherlessness, etc) that have the potential to harm their own family and society in general as a result.

Legal ramifications:

The problems with redefining marriage also arise in same-sex divorce and parental laws. Just as there are a set of entry conditions for marriage there would be a set of exit provisions as well. Douglas Allen can better discuss the potential impact of same sex divorce on straight relationships and parental consent laws in his book called "An economic assessment of same-sex marriage laws". [1] 959-964

THE IMMEDIATE EFFECTS OF REDEFINING MARRIAGE

This new law impinges on people's freedoms and their capacity to live their life with freedom of conscience and to transmit their values to their own children. Americans will either be forced to accept something like this and reject their own beliefs that reflect objective (not subjective) reality in the process or else live in fear of a secular government that will pander to the likes of intolerant gay activists who will undoubtedly impose their convoluted notion of equality and human rights.

Now, I have explained how gay marriage is not a civil right based on the "is" and the "ought". CON must provide a compelling state reason for how redefining the purpose of marriage benefits society as a whole. However, even if he was successful in providing an argument for gay marriage, the benefits would have to outweigh or at least equal the costs for gay marriage to be considered a civil right as its defined.

[1]http://www.law.harvard.edu...
[2] http://en.wikipedia.org...
Stephen_Hawkins

Con

I'm going to go through my opponent's argument quickly, before finally restating my position.

Firstly, though, I'd like to state that one should not be convinced that rounds two and three were justified because he was stating the facts to justify his arguments. Ignoring the misnaming of the fallacy being committed (It would probably be a blind assertion fallacy, but certainly not naturalistic fallacy), if we accept his justification, then what he has done was set out to convince us that the law in its current state in America does not grant SSM as a civil right. Firstly, I stated in R1 that this is true, and is assumed in the debate: therefore, the 'justification' for this is completely pointless.

If I were to give an equivalent, i'll use the analogy of the Socrates argument. Imagine if we were to set out whether Socrates is mortal. I may use the syllogism "All men are mortal; Socrates is a man; therefore, Socrates is mortal" and state this in the first round. My opponent may respond by saying "agreed, and I concede that All men are mortal, for the purpose and ethos of the debate. I shall dispute whether Socrates is a man". If I then spend two rounds setting out whether all men are mortal, this would evidently be completely irrelevant!

However, I'd also like to point out that I said in R1 that this debate was to be debated by the title and R1 rules: therefore, as it was not set out, there is no geographical bias. My opponent seems to set out that, as he has shown it in America, it is therefore true. However, I pointed out this is a blatant disregard of the debate: I may show that in the Netherlands the government grants it as a civil right[1] or how there are no civil rights at all proven by Somalia[2]. Further, my opponent refers to something that can be as close to universal as possible: the UN charter. Well, in response I'd just post this, with accordance to article 16. Article 2:

Everyone is entitled to all the rights and freedoms set forth in this Declaration, without distinction of any kind, such as race, colour, sex, language, religion, political or other opinion, national or social origin, property, birth or other status. Furthermore, no distinction shall be made on the basis of the political, jurisdictional or international status of the country or territory to which a person belongs, whether it be independent, trust, non-self-governing or under any other limitation of sovereignty.[3]

If my opponent distinguishes between straight and gay couple's right to marriage, then we have a problem: he's broken this charter. As we'd be defining marriage dependent on sex, or dependent on their status of orientation, then we've broken this charter.

However, this is irrelevant to the motion still: It was clearly set out in the primary post that this debate was on a should not an is. If it were an is, as in whether it is in regards to the current law, my opponent would have defined a geographical parameter, otherwise i can claim that it is because Netherlands against it is because some parts of America. Thus, I interpreted as a policy debate. My opponent seems to agree. However, the actual statement that I have misinterpreted the debate for all rounds until this most recent of posts suggests moreso that he has not read any of my actual argument, but simply posted from another source (wink wink, nudge nudge).

Now, to move on.

Traditional view of marriage

My opponent claims that he is not saying marriage is for procreation, but marriage is for accodomating procreation. This doesn't challenge my point: procreation includes IVF and surrogacy, which can be done by those in a same-sex cohabitation. As they are just as good at being married (proven in a previous round, not questioned) and actually worse if forced to cohabitate and not marry (my opponent stated this), then my opponent should be supporting same-sex marriage. In addition, I agree that marriage can be used in Kantian ethics to "accomodate procreation" in the same way that marriage can be used to "accodomate stealing" or "accomodate paying less money". It's evident that my opponent sees marriage in a Machiavellian, not Kantian, way. He is using marriage as a tool to use people as a means to his end: a clear and gross breaking of Kantian morality.

Also, my opponent's traffic light analogy: traffic lights don't use people as a means. It's quite hard for them to. We use traffic lights as a means to remind people a car is coming. Rational people would always stop at red, except in the most rare of circumstance (I'm thinking the film Speed scenario), showing that the traffic light is a legitimate moral device. By comparison, marriage is implemented by the state to accomodate procreation, which is a nice way of saying getting us to have more children. This is using people as a means to an end. This is clearly immoral. And as my opponent has accepted Kantian ethics, I hope he understands how this follows. I'd also like to point out that Kantianism is political morality: it's used for creating moral legislation. Thus, its application is just.

What principles of marriage, same sex marriage removes:

I'd like to go over this one more time: Marriage, the massive consensus of scholars, polls, and field specialists agree come down to two main principles: secure, official, state recognised union; and a strong, stable foundation to childrearing. Other, more right-wing promoters, add procreation to the list. I have shown before how that is problematic.

Democracy

I have referred to California, Britain, France, and Germany resectively. Each want SSM. The california specifically involves showing 5 polls as of last year, with 1 showing anti-SSM. My opponent, in response, states that because of, and there's no getting around this, one poll - which is well considered to have been bought by the Catholic and religious community[4]. The truth is, in one heavily propagandised poll in one area does not outwiegh dozens more polls in many more areas.

Immediate effects of the legalisation

What are the immediate effects? Well, I can simply say the obvious: the proper following of the UN charter, the promotion of freedoms and liberties, etc. but the most interesting one, I think, is the increased knowledge.

The point was brought about traditional values not being able to be updated. I wish to state that by legalising SSM, we can make people more open minded. The inverse slippery slope shows that legalising SSM gives more insight to whether it is a good idea to continue legalise it or not[5]. It is more commonly known as a moratorium. By taking a cautious approach, we limit information. Any arguments making empirical, justified claims against the legalisation of SSM is pure speculation for any given region until we test the hypotheses put forth. To make the claims against SSM justified, we need to legalise it to test them. Hence, we have good reason to legalise SSM.

Further, economically, it is a bad idea. The gay marriage ban actually costs more than it saves. This is a severly problematic issue.

To conclude...

I have shown through democracy, morality, and economically that SSM is a good idea. I also have shown the more robust definitions of marriage. Finally, and arguably most importantly, I have shown why it should be a civil right: that what was agreed in R1, which was "for acceptance and rules (and definitions)". I await for my opponent's response.

1 - http://www.thedailybeast.com...;
2 - http://www.bbc.co.uk...;
3 - http://www.un.org...;
4 - http://prop8voterinfo.blogspot.co.uk...; & http://www.examiner.com...
5 - Intertemporal Disagreement and Empirical Slippery Slope Arguments, by Thomas Douglas
6 -
http://www.debate.org...
Debate Round No. 4
kenballer

Pro

Again, its fine if CON does not want to base this debate on American law. I am not holding him to it unless he holds it against me, of course. As I said before, The nature of my arguments can apply anywhere and to this resolution. I don't just say that gay marriage is not a civil right merely based on what the government and courts have randomly declared in my country. I explained why they made their decision on a consistent basis based the moral and philosophical aspects behind it.

If I simply explained the "ought" without the "is", there would not be any structure to the debate. Even part of CON's argument was about the "is" rather than the "ought" when He talked about marriage being about love. Nevetheless, let me explain why gay marriage should not be a civil right.

WHAT "IS" THE PURPOSE OF MARRIAGE?

Again, The mere appearance, existence, or understanding that marriage is between a man and a woman ,which only indirectly encourages us to procreate inside a marriage and not outside of it, is not imposing a morality or using anybody as a means anymore than our understanding that green light means "go" and red light means "stop" is imposing a morality.

Instead, Traditional marriage would be the green light while cohabitation and divorce would be the red light. Moreover, this is a moral rule which can be applied in all circumstances (making it universalised) which is justified (not using others as a means only). In other words, The law does not make us do right from wrong but helps us understand what is right and wrong regarding the well-being of children. Whether or not we choose to do what's right is entirely our choice.

This is done to maintain order in the public arena and protect ourselves or others quality of life in both situations. However, the difference is that you get punished by the state if you drive pass a red light. When it comes to marriage, you are allowed to raise a family outside of a marriage or without the father and not get penalized. You have the freedom to marry or procreate and not get married or procreate. What CON says simply has no basis. Therefore, the state merely recognizing an objective biological reality to indirectly regulate it without force cannot be considered imposing a morality.

I think CON probably did not understand the argument I made about the actual purpose of civil marriage. However, its not my fault that he does not understand my argument as it is. I made it very clear to him.

WHY WE OUGHT NOT TO CHANGE THIS PURPOSE

Based on the arguments and studies I mentioned in Round 1&2 involving the promotion of non-traditional views of marriage and discouraging traditional views of marriage as well; it logically follows that vulnerable future generations, will be programmed to formulate choices (like divorce, fatherlessness, etc) that have the potential to harm their own family and society in general as a result. This includes the legal ramicfications that may arise in same-sex divorce and parental laws. Just as there are a set of entry conditions for marriage there would be a set of exit provisions as well. I don't need to provide evidence for this because this is not about empiricism according to the rules of the debate set by CON himself. This is based arguments and potentiality

THE IMMEDIATE EFFECTS OF REDEFINING MARRIAGE

This new law impinges on people's freedoms and their capacity to live their life with freedom of conscience and to transmit their values to their own children. Americans will either be forced to accept something like this and reject their own beliefs that reflect objective (not subjective) reality in the process or else live in fear of a secular government that will pander to the likes of intolerant gay activists who will undoubtedly impose their convoluted notion of equality and human rights.

Lastly, you don't need to redefine marriage to get the kind of economic impact PRO speaks of. Civil unions can potentially produce the same effect.

In conclusion, Civil rights are about fairness and justice. They govern behavior to make sure we have order. The concept of gay marriage does not provide fairness nor is it just and it potentially creates disorder if we consider making it into a Civil right and it does not provide any benefit to society. I urge a PRO vote
Stephen_Hawkins

Con

I'm just going to summarise my argument here, rather than restate any major points. This round is for a summary of the debate as it has gone as a whole.

1) The purpose of marriage.

I've gone through this repeatedly now: the purpose of modern marriage is to create stability. The second purpose isidea of childrearing - though this is debated. Finally, the idea of it being specifically for procreation: this is the important one for the debate. Though my opponent wishes to claim his argument is that it promotes traditional views of marriage, in essence, the clash is on whether marriage should be about procreation. My aim was to show that this was unnecessary. If this was shown, the argument my opponent promoted is entirely undermined.

2) Arguments in favour of procreative marriage

My opponent ends with illustrating the analogy that marriage is light a traffic light: "[criminalising SSM] is done to maintain order in the public arena and protect ourselves or others quality of life". The argument in itself has severe lack of defence: it seemed to be purely about the purpose of marriage being procreation, which of course begs the question of why that should be the purose of marriage. The defence for this point simply seemed to be a loose, rare criticism of my counterplan, without actually defending this idea in the slightest. With more divorces and more single parents, children born out of wedlock and similar things than ever, the outdated view of marriage is just that: outdated. It does not apply to the current circumstance: and why should we apply 11th century ideas to a 21st century world?

However, the argument my opponent presented (then dropped: I assumed that he conceded this point when he never brought it up again but apparently not) on this causing negative effects was completely unfounded: the sources provided linked to completely different issues, and most of which hardly considered truly "wrong", such as an increase of cohabitation as a result. And even then, the argument was "because revision of the meaning of marriage occurred at the same time as cohabitation increased, marriage is the cause" isn't an argument any more than the rising price of bavarian cheese caused this change.

3) Arguments against procreation marriage

I touched on the criticisms a moment ago: procreation simply is outdated. Modern marriages don't focus on it: from experts to polls, no-one, bar a minority of the fringe right wing Christian conservatives promote this view. Marriage is no longer a relationship about producing children.

Using marriage as a way to use people to produce children is further immoral. As shown through the Kantian moral system, marriage, in the way used by my opponent, is a way of getting people to reproduce: and using people as a means to an end is immoral.

4) Arguments in general

The entire point about it being democratic was dropped. Just thought I'd remind everyone of this. Further, the statement of the ban on gay marriage costing more than it saves was stated in R4. This was not addressed either.

I urge voters to take these things into account when voting.
Debate Round No. 5
7 comments have been posted on this debate. Showing 1 through 7 records.
Posted by Stephen_Hawkins 4 years ago
Stephen_Hawkins
Name the points, please. One of the reasons people complain about votes is the way that people just say vague statements with no actual criticism or even decent justification.
Posted by MouthWash 4 years ago
MouthWash
No offense, but you also ignored some of his points.
Posted by MouthWash 4 years ago
MouthWash
By red herring, do you mean strawman? Also, someone run get a violin.
Posted by Stephen_Hawkins 4 years ago
Stephen_Hawkins
And in regards to rambling off on some point, how come that is worth losing 3 points, but all of R3 by PRO (bearing in mind it was on things I never touched, yet alone brought up) was somehow relevant? Saying it's not this and that when I made a case which was untouched is specifically rambling and red herring.
Posted by Stephen_Hawkins 4 years ago
Stephen_Hawkins
I rambled off on some economic point..? Bearing in mind in total it was 2 lines, the equivalent of 20 seconds at most, I don't 100% think that is true.
Posted by kenballer 4 years ago
kenballer
I made the necessary changes to the first requirement.
Posted by FourTrouble 4 years ago
FourTrouble
You list 4 things I must do in this debate at the end of your opening. The first one already presupposes that gay couples cannot have children, and that gay marriage cannot be justified solely on the basis of that fact.
4 votes have been placed for this debate. Showing 1 through 4 records.
Vote Placed by medic0506 4 years ago
medic0506
kenballerStephen_HawkinsTied
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Reasons for voting decision: Pro established why marriage is beneficial to society and showed legal precedent where the current definition of marriage was upheld. This shows that SSM is not a civil right.
Vote Placed by AlwaysMoreThanYou 4 years ago
AlwaysMoreThanYou
kenballerStephen_HawkinsTied
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Reasons for voting decision: Wow, Con, wow. What wiploc said.
Vote Placed by MouthWash 4 years ago
MouthWash
kenballerStephen_HawkinsTied
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Total points awarded:40 
Reasons for voting decision: What wiploc said. Con's democratic argument was an appeal to popularity and he also rambles off on some economic argument that ignores the point of the debate.
Vote Placed by wiploc 4 years ago
wiploc
kenballerStephen_HawkinsTied
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Reasons for voting decision: Con accused Pro of plagiarism. The claim was apparently unfounded, but Con did not retract and apologize. Instead, he tried to justify the attack by misrepresenting his first post.