The Instigator
Pro (for)
4 Points
The Contender
Con (against)
0 Points

Gay marriage ought to be legalized in the U.S.

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Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 3/13/2014 Category: Politics
Updated: 2 years ago Status: Post Voting Period
Viewed: 652 times Debate No: 49059
Debate Rounds (4)
Comments (4)
Votes (1)




First round acceptance. Second is opening arguments (no rebuttals) and third and fourth are rebuttals/refutations.


I accept this debate.
Debate Round No. 1


When we examine this issue, it's vital to look at it from both an ethical and legal point of view. Only after examining them will we discover it is morally justified and logically proven to legalize gay marriage in the U.S.

My value for this debate is EQUALITY.

First, why don't we begin with the legal viewpoint.

To do this, we need only to look at our Declaration of Independence in which it was claimed "all men [and now we know, women] are created equal" and then later elaborates on how we all have the rights to "life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness." Clearly the created equally part is fairly self-explanatory. We are all equal, so one's homosexual/heterosexual tendencies are irrelevant to whatever marriage one wants to have. Next is the life, liberty, and happiness part. When one is denied marriage to their partner, this is denying them the pursuit of happiness they deserve. It is unjustified and legally reprehensible to prohibit a marriage. Time and time again in the past, we have partaken in closed-minded, bigoted tendencies only to repeal said tendencies later on when the truth revealed itself. Just look at our ban prohibiting inter-racial marriages. And today, I am assuming we all are under the same opinion that banning it is not morally correct. We can compare the inter-racial marriage issue to the one we have now concerning gay marriage. Furthermore, in American is the separation of church and state. This means that no religion may be brought into political affairs, which is exactly what gay marriage has become. Therefore any and all arguments concerning religion is irrelevant.

But next, let's move on to the ethical standpoint.

Homosexuals marrying each other will not lead to a third world war. It will not lead to a disease that will spread across America. It will not lead to bestiality. Nor will affect YOU in any way, shape or form. Because when it comes down to it, if you don't like gay marriage, then don't get gay married. That's it. See, trying to ban gay marriage is akin you being on a diet and telling others not to eat cake because it offends you. Which, we all know, is preposterous.

Clearly, under both legal and ethical standpoints, gay marriage ought to be legalized in all of America. Not only is it a right that ought to be guaranteed, but there are no logical contentions on why it ought to be banned.


Gay marriage should be left to the states. Indeed, all marriage should be left to the states. Search the U.S. Constitution from start to finish, and you will find no reference whatsoever to marriage. You will, however, find the 10th Amendment, which reads as follows: "The powers not delegated to the United States by the Constitution, nor prohibited by it to the States, are reserved to the States respectively, or to the people."
Marriage is not commerce, war, or taxation. It is unrelated to money, the post office, the patent system, or any of the other enumerated powers of the federal government. Its regulation is neither necessary nor proper in pursuit of those powers. At the drafting of the Constitution, the states all had marriage laws of one kind or another. There were wide disparities among them, both then and now, and such disparities have existed at all times in between.

The founders had no desire to settle such matters, and they did not wish a future Congress to do so either. The Constitution they wrote left only two choices: Either allow the states to regulate marriage (with, perhaps, federal consequences to follow)"or else return marriage to the people, to individuals, families, churches, and communities. Either approach would be consistent with the Constitution.
Debate Round No. 2


Why don't I first begin by refuting some of my opponent's statements while simultaneously clarifying my own.

First, the claim that "the states all had marriage laws of one kind or another."

If you examine America's history, time and time again the federal government has interfered with these so-called "marriage laws." Just go back to the 60s where inter-racial marriages were banned. Every state had different opinions, but we stepped in and eventually made overarching laws around them. In Supreme Court case Loving V. Virginia, [1,2] the Supreme Court banned the prohibition of inter-racial marriages and made a federal law stating such. Clearly the government has interfered, and can interfere, with laws concerning marriage.

And while my answer above was fairly broad, here is a refutation to the arguments concerning the Constitution.

And at first glance, it may seem the federal government is overstepping their bounds when it comes to marriage. But upon closer examination, it will be apparent that we should, in fact, legalize gay marriage once and for all. The fourteenth amendment states, "No State shall make or enforce any law which shall abridge the privileges or immunities of citizens of the United States".... and the definition of marriage is "the formal union of a man and a woman, typically recognized by law, by which they become husband and wife". Now, this means marriage, in itself, is a privilege. And when states are denying their citizens that privilege? Well, then it's time for the federal government to step in. We are abusing the privileges of good American citizens by fundamentally denying them the rights they deserve. This needs to stop.

And before moving on, I'd like to point out that just because "such disparities have existed at all times in between", does not mean we should continue to refuse the granting of basic privileges to American citizens. In fact, this is a logical fallacy argumentum ad antiquitatem (appeal to tradition) and cannot be considered a viable argument.





JoJoju1998 forfeited this round.
Debate Round No. 3


To recap:

Marriage is a fundamental right of American citizens guaranteed by both the morals set by the Declaration of Independence and the regulations of the Constitution. Leaving it up to the states is both unethical and morally reprehensible, especially as many are passing laws that are banning homosexual marriages. From ethical, logical, and legal standpoints, all facts indicate that gay marriage ought to be legalized in the U.S. When we examine the arguments my opponent and I brought up, it is clear that it is the federal government's duty to uphold our citizen's privileges and our duty to support the equality of all people- gay or straight, young or old, male or female.


JoJoju1998 forfeited this round.
Debate Round No. 4
4 comments have been posted on this debate. Showing 1 through 4 records.
Posted by jam20636 2 years ago
Con is not really arguing against the legalization of marriage. Rather, Con is qualifying Pro's argument. "Gay marriage ought to be legalized in the U.S.," just not by the federal government, which is really a big concession to Pro.

The federal government does not have marriage laws. You cannot divorce in Federal Court, because there is no federal marriage law. DOMA, for example, was not a marriage law. It was a law that would confer federal government benefits to heterosexual couples. This is quite a different type of law. Federal agencies, for example, will only say that a couple is married, if their state has officially recognized the couple as married. This is true of taxation as well. The IRS relies on state definitions of marriage.

However, Pro's argument does not have much bite to it either. The Declaration of Independence, while inspirational, is not a legal document. You probably have to scratch under the surface. The Supreme Court has said that there is a Constitutional right to marry; however, it does not mean that the Federal gov't has to be the one to govern it.
Posted by JoJoju1998 2 years ago
Hello, I hope to have a fun debate.
Posted by Sparrow24601 2 years ago
No. Con would argue against gay marriage, as legalizing and endorsing are two separate things.
Posted by ZebramZee 2 years ago
Does the 'Con' position include those who don't think any type of marriage should be endorsed by the Federal Govt?
1 votes has been placed for this debate.
Vote Placed by Geogeer 2 years ago
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Total points awarded:40 
Reasons for voting decision: Con forfeited, Pro wins.