The Instigator
Freeman
Pro (for)
Winning
107 Points
The Contender
mongeese
Con (against)
Losing
65 Points

Gay marriage should be legal in the United States.

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Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 10/17/2009 Category: Politics
Updated: 7 years ago Status: Voting Period
Viewed: 21,812 times Debate No: 9722
Debate Rounds (3)
Comments (101)
Votes (33)

 

Freeman

Pro

I will be using a dual overlaying teleological/constitutional argument to contend that gay marriage should be legalized in the United States. In this project I will borrow the harm principle, as articulated by John Stewart Mill, to argue that the only reasonable circumstance in which a government can limit a citizen's liberty is to prevent that person from causing harm to others. This view when taken to its logical conclusion would entail the legalization of gay marriage.

Contention 1: The Harm Principle

Gay marriage is no more capable of harming anyone than heterosexual marriage. And the canard that gay marriage out to be outlawed because it is detrimental to society is evidenced by the other groups that we do allow to marry. Consider for a moment some of the people that we do allow to marry. Pimps, drug dealers, arsonists, felons of all kinds, known pedophiles, mobsters and other criminals are all quite free to marry and do so on a daily basis. [1] Any coherent argument against gay marriage that would leave these people to freely marry would be a masterpiece of political engineering. Indeed, this is the perfect reductio ad absurdum to the notion that we are preventing gay marriage to avoid harming society.

Contention 2: The Utility Factor

Gay couples are in a better position to raise children and therefore produce more stable families if they are afforded marriage rights. It also provides them the opportunity to be able to spend the rest of their life with the person that they love and it guarantees them the legal protections that other married people enjoy. To deny people their right to form marriages with the person of their choice is to deny them their right to pursue happiness as they see fit. The only rational thing that can be said about our collective aversion to gay marriage is that we, as a society, have systematically demonized everything that could possibly exceed the pleasure of prayer or pro creative sex.

Contention 3: Gay marriage bans violate the equal protection clause of the 14th amendment.

Banning gay marriage unfairly discriminates against gay couples by preventing them from being able to form valid legal marriages. In doing this it is in clear violation of the equal protection clause of the fourteenth amendment which states that, "(n)o state shall ... deny to any person within its jurisdiction the equal protection of the laws". [2]-[3] With this in mind the illegality of gay marriage violates the equal protection clause because it does not afford equal protection under the law to a certain group of people on the basis of their sexual orientation.

Contention 4: Gay marriage bans violate the due process clause of the 14th amendment.

The essence of the due process clause is surmised well in the following excerpt, "Due process alternatively due process of law or the process that is due, is the principle that the government must respect all of the legal rights that are owed to a person according to the law. Due process holds the government subservient to the law of the land, protecting individual persons from the state." [4] Given this understanding the illegality of gay marriage would be unconstitutional because it denies a certain group of people their legal right to marry. People have the right to life, liberty, and property under the due process clause and to deny these rights in any way without sound reasoning is unconstitutional. Furthermore, one does not have liberty if one is not allowed to marry the person of their choice. Therefore, we can conclude that gay marriage bans are unconstitutional.

===================
Potential rebuttals addressed: The Offense Principle
===================

Shall our government limit liberties on the basis that certain actions will offend others? Not if we wish to remain consistent with the bill of rights. At no point in the bill of rights is anyone guaranteed the right not to be offended. Secondly, people will inevitably take offense to nearly anything, which renders the offense principle entirely relative. The offense principle provides no objective basis for limiting liberty because different things will always offend different people. And if it were taken to its logical conclusion the offense principle could lead to us outlawing minority religions like Islam, pornography, mini skirts, chewing gum, backwards baseball hats and nearly anything imaginable.

=========
Conclusion
=========

If we seek to live in a more just society that follows the rule of law and embodies the virtues of compassion then gay marriage should be legalized. I will further elaborate on my arguments in my second round, but for know I will let Con present their case.

Defining terms:

Same-sex marriage is a term used to describe a legally or socially recognized marriage between two persons of the same biological sex or social gender. Other terms used to describe this type of recognition include gay marriage or gender-neutral marriage.
http://en.wikipedia.org...

(For the purpose of convenience the legalization of gay marriage would involve the entire United States.)

Harm principle (as articulated by J.S. Mill)- a government can only limit the liberty and rights of its citizens in order to prevent citizens from harming each other.
http://en.wikipedia.org...

Sources:

[1] http://www.bidstrup.com... (Point number 9)
[2] http://en.wikipedia.org...
[3] http://www.usconstitution.net...
[4] http://en.wikipedia.org...

Best,
Freeman
mongeese

Con

Thank you for starting this debate, Freeman.

First, we need a definition for "legal":
"Having a formal status derived from law often without a basis in actual fact" [1]

My argument will be that government should have no authority over marriage.

Now, to address the contentions individually:

Contention 1: The Harm Principle
The central idea of my dismissal of this contention can be found in my opponent's quote, "Any coherent argument against gay marriage that would leave these people to freely marry would be a masterpiece of political engineering." My argument is against the legalization of both gay marriages and straight marriages, so this entire contention has no purpose.

Contention 2: The Utility Factor
All things my opponent mentioned here do not even require government, with the exception of one:
"[I]t guarantees them the legal protections that other married people enjoy."
However, if other married people no longer enjoy these legal protections, gays would no longer have anything to complain about. In fact, nobody would have any complaints about government and marriage whatsoever. A woman could marry a wall [2], and nobody would have any reason to oppose her.

Contention 3: Gay marriage bans violate the equal protection clause of the 14th amendment.
Now, in order to uphold the 14th amendment, we'd have to go further than granting marriage rights to gays. We'd have to grant them to pedophiles, people who wish to marry multiple people [3], people who wish to marry animals, people who wish to marry inanimate objects [2], and people who wish to marry abstract ideas. The simple solution is to have law no longer involved. No more discrimination.

Contention 4: Gay marriage bans violate the due process clause of the 14th amendment.
See above. Same problems, still gone.

Now, for my own contentions against the resolution:

Contention 1: It is illegal for marriage to be legal in the United States.
Our beloved first amendment [4]:
"Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof..."
Marriage was a religious institution before government decided to make laws respecting it [5].
Therefore, we must undo this illegal act by government by repealing all laws formally recognizing marriage of any kind.

Contention 2: It is discriminatory for marriage to be legal in the United States.
By giving benefits such as tax cuts to those who are married, the government puts those people above those who are not. This is obvious discrimination. By separating government from marriage, this discrimination will automatically vanish.

Contention 3: The United States lacks the power to legalize gay marriage.
According to the Tenth Amendment [4]:
"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."
The power to legalize gay marriage rests not with the USFG, but with the individual states. As my opponent does not live in every state of the United States, he does not have a say in the governments of most states. Therefore, because the people of a state have decided that gay marriage should not be legal, gay marriage should not be legal in that state.

In conclusion, gay marriage should not be legal in the United States, because it would be discriminatory, and it would involve too much government intervention where it is not needed.

1. http://www.merriam-webster.com...
2. http://www.ananova.com...
3. http://www.pro-polygamy.com...
4. http://www.archives.gov...
5. http://en.wikipedia.org...
Debate Round No. 1
Freeman

Pro

Let me thank Mongeese for not making this debate a carbon copy of the previous debates that have been done on Gay marriage. Your argument is both original and captivating.

=======
Case Pro- Rebuttals
=======

---> "My argument will be that government should have no authority over marriage."

Marriage is a fundamental right of liberty. The United States Supreme Court has ruled this to be the case some 42 years ago. [1] Therefore my opponent's claim has no sort of standing legal precedent or logical basis whatsoever.

---> "However, if other married people no longer enjoy these legal protections, gays would no longer have anything to complain about."

No, society would still be facing the same problem at that point. Only this time even more people would have their basic rights taken away.

---> "Now, in order to uphold the 14th amendment, we'd have to go further than granting marriage rights to gays. We'd have to grant them to pedophiles, people who wish to marry multiple people, people who wish to marry animals, people who wish to marry inanimate objects, and people who wish to marry abstract ideas."

I must admit that I'm unused to facing slippery slope arguments about gay marriage that advocate for a walls right to marry. [2] Animals, walls, and abstract ideas aren't people with the legal rights associated with people. It would therefore be meaningless to speak of their right to marry or to get married.

Contention 1: "It is illegal for marriage to be legal in the United States." - mongeese

There is nothing explicitly religious about the institution of marriage. In our modern secularized country anyone can get married in a courthouse without having religion ever involved in the matter whatsoever. [3] To claim that marriage is a religious institution is therefore false. It may have had its roots in religion at one point, although that would be a simplistic understanding, but that doesn't mean that it's a religious institution in our present society. Moreover, I have already shown you with my first source that the Supreme Court has ruled that marriage is a fundamental right to liberty. Indeed, it is legal for marriage to be legal.

Contention 2: "It is discriminatory for marriage to be legal in the United States." -mongeese

This is an interesting argument, but completely irrelevant. It deals with the legal protections that should be afforded under marriage and says nothing of who should be able to marry. I will simply make the case that everyone should be allowed to marry even if we end up deciding that married people shouldn't receive tax cuts over single people. Moreover, the government has a vested interest in helping marriage via tax cuts and other measures, because functional marriages are necessary in order to promote social stability. With this in mind the removal of marriage would be likely to foster societal dysfunction. Marriage helps people collaborate on a common project and it gives children a safe environment in which to learn and grow. If you remove marriage by abolishing it you will deal a tremendous blow to the social, economic, and legal structure of modern civilization.

Contention 3: "The United States lacks the power to legalize gay marriage." -mongeese

According to the Tenth Amendment [4]:
"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."

I have already made a strong argument that the Constitution of the United Sates guarantees the right to gay marriage under the equal protection and due process clause of the 14th amendment. Therefore the people of the United Sates that have voted to ban gay marriage in their state can all go screw themselves. They don't have the necessary power to override the Constitution of the United Sates. And since this is the case it would follow that individual states could not prevent gay marriage because doing so would violate the 14th amendment of our constitution.

=======
Conclusion:
=======

My opponent's arguments are interesting and… well they're interesting. But they do not serve to refute any of my four arguments. And apart from a few slippery slopes and other fallacious contentions my opponent has not presented a compelling argument that gay marriage should be banned. Banning gay marriage is unconstitutional and since the United States Supreme Court has declared that marriage is a fundamental liberty it follows from this that gay marriage should be legalized. (Resolution affirmed)

Sources:

[1] http://en.wikipedia.org...
[2] http://en.wikipedia.org...
[3] http://www.alachuaclerk.org...
[4] http://www.archives.gov...

Best,
Freeman
mongeese

Con

Thank you for your quick response.

My opponent's first argument is that "marriage is a fundamental right of liberty." However, the context of the case itself is that people should have the right to choose who they marry. However, it does NOT say that people have the fundamental right to gain benefits from the government for being married. The Supreme Court case only stated that the government was having too much authority over marriage. In fact, it was a law limiting marriage rights that made the case necessary. Nowhere in the case is it implied that ending all government involvement in marriage would have any negative consequences whatsoever. So yes, marriage is a fundamental right of liberty, but to have government grant discriminatory benefits to marriages is not.
Additionally, this is an example of appeal to authority [1], because he is claiming that because the United States Supreme Court ruled something to be so, then it must be so. In fact, the USSC is actually a biased entity, if we were to go by my opponent's interpretation of the Supreme Court being pro-government interference, because any government institution would naturally be in favor of increased government authority, making my opponent's appeal even more fallacious.

Contention 2: The Utility Factor
My opponent then argues that if government quit all involvement in marriage, "even more people would have their basic rights taken away." Not at all. People would still marry as they pleased. However, government would be unable to have a say in the matter. The people would simply lose their discriminatory tax cuts, which they had no "right" to. Or, we could just eliminate a few unnecessary government projects and say that everybody gets tax cuts, rather than just the married. Now, how can anybody complain with that situation?

Contention 3: Gay marriage bans violate the equal protection clause of the 14th amendment.
My opponent's arguments against marriages involving animals, walls, and abstract ideas are valid, but he ignores polygamy and pedophilia.

Contention 1: It is illegal for marriage to be legal in the United States.
My opponent's next argument is that marriage is not a religious institution. However, it is. The story goes that marriage was solely a religious institution until John Calvin decided that his government would recognize religious marriages [2]. Since then, people with no religious beliefs decided that it was unfair that only religious people were getting unfair government benefits, so they started marrying, too. That is how government got itself involved in marriage, and it has refused to release its grip ever since. The question is, why continue its grip? There's no point except to discriminate.

Contention 2: It is discriminatory for marriage to be legal in the United States.
My opponent suddenly switches his arguments from government-recognized marriages to not-government-recognized marriages. This is fine and all, but it completely kills any chance for him to affirm the resolution. Remember the definition of "legal":
"Having a formal status derived from law often without a basis in actual fact" [3]
If we remove the legal protections, government would no longer bother to give marriage any formal legal status, and therefore, gay marriage would not be legal.
Additionally, here are a few quotes from my opponent:
"Moreover, the government has a vested interest in helping marriage via tax cuts and other measures, because functional marriages are necessary in order to promote social stability."
Now, this is an example of a non sequitur (does not follow) [4], because it assumes that marriages need "tax cuts and other measures" to be functional. However, marriages have existed for a long time without "tax cuts and other measures" [5]. Gays have lived in informal marriages, and have reportedly been doing fine without "tax cuts and other measures." Therefore, there is no reason to assume that we need "tax cuts and other measures."
The rest of the paragraph continues to rely on the misconception that abolishing "tax cuts and other measures" will lead to the abolishment of all functional marriages.

Now, for a final in-depth analysis of my opponent's conclusion:
"My opponent's arguments are interesting and… well they're interesting."
Thank you.
"But they do not serve to refute any of my four arguments."
I beg to differ.
"And apart from a few slippery slopes and other fallacious contentions..."
You have failed to explain why my argument was a slippery slope (especially when I gave examples of people wanting to marry multiple people or inanimate objects), and have not brought up any other fallacies.
"...my opponent has not presented a compelling argument that gay marriage should be banned."
Banned? No. What, would government install cameras in everybody's houses to make sure that nobody attempted an informal marriage? That would be ridiculous. What I am calling for is a lack of government recognition in gay marriage, and all marriage.
"Banning gay marriage is unconstitutional..."
First, let's assume that you mean "removing legal and discriminatory benefits from." Then, let's realize that I am advocating "banning" all marriage, not just gay marriage, so the 14th Amendment would not be infringed upon at all.
"...and since the United States Supreme Court has declared that marriage is a fundamental liberty..."
For one thing, this is an appeal to biased authority. For another, marriage being a fundamental liberty does not grant it formal legal status.
"...it follows from this that gay marriage should be legalized."
When the two premises collapse, so does the conclusion.
"(Resolution affirmed)"
Because giving legal status to any marriage is clear discrimination against those who are not married, and there is no valid reason for the recognition of marriage by government, and there would be less discrimination if government stopped messing with marriage altogether, gay marriage (and all marriage, for that matter) should not be legal in the United States.

1. http://en.wikipedia.org...
2. http://en.wikipedia.org...
3. http://www.merriam-webster.com...
4. http://en.wikipedia.org...
5. http://en.wikipedia.org...
Debate Round No. 2
Freeman

Pro

Let me begin by thanking Mongeese for accepting my debate.

Appealing to a Supreme Court decision for a legal precedent regarding the Constitutionality of an issue is about as far as you can get from making a fallacious appeal to authority. If Stephen Hawking says something about cosmology and I use his work I'm not appealing to authority because he is an expert on cosmology. Supreme court justices are all experts on constitutional law and appealing to their decisions is not a fallacious appeal to authority. But, all of this is irrelevant because when you actually read the constitution it falls in line with their decision. People have the right to liberty and equal protection in the 14th amendment and part of this entails the freedom to marry people of the same sex.

---> "However, it does NOT say that people have the fundamental right to gain benefits from the government for being married."

This argument is beginning to bore me and I've only dealt with it twice. Even if I were to grant that you are right people still have other rights in marriage that aren't related to gaining benefits. If one member of a lesbian couple gets seriously ill they may not be able to visit their loved one because technically they aren't "family". [1] By allowing gay couples to get married they would get to enjoy this right along with the other legal protections that straight couples enjoy.

===================
Defending The Argument
===================

Contention 1: The Harm Principle

My opponent has said absolutely nothing about this argument so allow it to carry over into this round. I firmly maintain that gay marriage harms no one.

Contention 2: The Utility Factor

---> "People would still marry as they pleased. However, government would be unable to have a say in the matter."

We have a constitution to guarantee us certain rights. It is therefore the responsibility of the government to make sure that those rights aren't violated. Furthermore, rights mean absolutely nothing unless they are legally recognized. There is a reason lawyers require people to sign legal documents as opposed to just relying on the good intentions of someone.

---> "The people would simply lose their discriminatory tax cuts, which they had no "right" to. Or, we could just eliminate a few unnecessary government projects and say that everybody gets tax cuts, rather than just the married. Now, how can anybody complain with that situation?"

Even if I were to grant that tax cuts for married people was discriminatory I've already pointed out that we could legalize gay marriage and still eliminate tax cuts for married couples. Your argument therefore consists of a false dichotomy. [2] There are more than two options. Gay marriage can be legalized and we can also take away tax cuts from married people.

Secondly, your saying that tax cuts for married couples are discriminatory without giving a reasonable explanation as to why this would be the case. But, even if you presented a great argument it's rendered irrelevant by my previous contention. We could still allow marriage and strip that institution of its tax cuts.

Contention 3: Gay marriage bans violate the equal protection clause of the 14th amendment.

"My opponent's arguments against marriages involving animals, walls, and abstract ideas are valid, but he ignores polygamy and pedophilia."

Before I'm even tempted to reply to mongeese's fallacious argument please notice how he is trying to distract you from the fact that he has said virtually nothing about my core constitutional arguments. Once again he has decided to trot out his tired slippery slope fallacy. Mongeese argues that by legalizing gay marriage we would inevitably have to allow pedophilia, polygamy, and bestiality. However, he does this without showing why gay marriage would lead to pedophilia or bestiality. Children are incapable of entering in marriage or independently entering into legal contracts, because they are, by definition, incapable of giving consent. [3] A child is simply too young to give informed consent. I'm not completely closed to the idea of polygamous marriage, but for now I'm only advocating for gay marriage. We can evaluate other claims to marriage rights one at a time as people make them.

Contention 4: Gay marriage bans violate the due process clause of the 14th amendment.

My opponent has ignored this point in his first and second round. Perhaps its because he has nothing to say regarding this issue? Allow my original argument for this to carry over into this round since my opponent has decided to ignore it.

=======
Case Pro- Rebuttals
=======

Contention 1: It is illegal for marriage to be legal in the United States.

In the year 2009 Marriage in the United States is definitively not a religious institution. This entire argument is nothing but a falsehood. Marriage is a purely legal agreement that can be done in a courthouse without the involvement of any religion. [4]

Contention 2: It is discriminatory for marriage to be legal in the United States.

"My opponent suddenly switches his arguments from government-recognized marriages to not-government-recognized marriages. This is fine and all, but it completely kills any chance for him to affirm the resolution."

I did no such thing. And in case you have become confused let me once again state that I'm advocating for government recognized gay marriages. I've never switched my argument in favor of non-government recognized marriages.

Your right about me committing a non sequitur with respect to marriage and tax cuts. I should have written that tax cuts and other financial benefits can help foster marriage stability. These things aren't entirely necessary for functional marriages. But, this whole point is of no relevance at any rate to the rest of my argument, so I concede it with that in mind. Whether or not tax cuts for married people is abolished is orthogonal to the issue at hand. We could agree that married people should not receive tax cuts and my arguments would still stand. Marriage rights consist of legal protections apart from just tax cuts. [5]

Contention 3: "The United States lacks the power to legalize gay marriage." –mongeese

My opponent has entirely dropped his third argument and probably hopes that you won't notice. Allow my previous arguments to carry over. Gay marriage bans are unconstitutional therefore the federal government does have the power to legalize gay marriage.

========
Conclusion:
========

Up until this point my opponent has ignored both of my arguments regarding the constitutionality of gay marriage. And has instead decided to respond to them by creating a fallacious slippery slope argument which states that if we were to legalize gay marriage we would also have to legalize bestiality, pedophilia, and marriage to inanimate objects. From there he decides to abandon his third argument about the United States lacking the power to legalize gay marriage. Consequentially, the outcome of this debate should be obvious. People have the right to marry the person of their preference and enjoy the legal protections that go along with that marriage. I have conclusively shown this using both the constitution and teleological ethics. And by granting marriage rights to everyone gay or straight our government helps foster the social stability that is overall beneficial to children and their parents. [6] (Vote Pro)

Sources:

[1] http://www.commondreams.org...
[2] http://en.wikipedia.org...
[3] http://en.wikipedia.org...
[4] http://www.ehow.com...
[5] http://www.nolo.com...
[6] http://www.city-journal.org...

Good Luck :)
mongeese

Con

Thank you for your quick response. I'm just going to cut to the chase here over the relevant points of the debate.

The one contention that is actually going to matter here at the end is whether or not marriages need special legal rights. My opponent brings up hospital visits as an example. However, why have hospitals restrict who visits you in a hospital? Shouldn't that decision be up to you? Therefore, in response to this "marriage right," I propose that hospitals collect lists from everyone listing who they'd wish to allow to visit them in a hospital emergency. This would result in no possible discrimination whatsoever, except at the whims of the person being visited, where the power fully deserves to be. You want to let your girlfriend in? Sure. Your co-workers? Sure, except Jim. Uncle Joe? Nah, too creepy. A gay could let their gay lover in. A polygamist could let in all of his wives. The end result is less government (win) and more liberty (win). It's a clear win-win situation.

Now, to address even more "marriage rights" [1]:
Most of these, especially the tax benefits, are simply discriminatory tax cuts, which my opponent has conceded are unnecessary.
For Estate Planning Benefits, both people should simply write wills when they're married. The numerous exemptions listed are merely more discrimination against non-married people.
For Government Benefits, a person should simply state who they would wish to share benefits with. Maybe two roommates wish to share social security benefits without being known as gay. I don't know. For military benefits, a person signing up could be asked who they would like to receive benefits from their service, which could be parents, a girlfriend, etc.
Employment Benefits, Housing Benefits, and Consumer Benefits are all part of the private sector, so people could work that out amongst themselves, with no unnecessary government interference.
Medical Benefits were already covered by the above example, although the list could include who a person would wish to handle medical affairs should he become incapacitated. Maybe you're in college, and your roommate knows you best, and you want your roommate to make the decisions. Why should government stop you?
Family Benefits include adoption of children (which could easily be taken care of during the adoption, rather than during the marriage, so the government involvement in marriage is unnecessary), division of money in a divorce (easily handled by a joint bank account that covers the value of all possessions), and child custody (which, again, should be handled at birth or at adoption rather than at marriage), leaving no reason for government involvement in marriage, but rather in parenting.
For Death Benefits, one could simply include in their will who they'd wish to manage the affairs of their death. Your best friend? Sure. Your parents? Sure. Your spouse? Sure. If your spouse dies with you? Uh, parents. See? Why restrict people's liberties?
As for other Legal Benefits and Protections, I'd like to pick who I want to represent me in court when I die.
The martial communications privilege is an example of discrimination against non-married people.
For the crime victim recovery benefits, I'd like to select who receives that myself.
We should not give immigration and residency privileges through marriage, because that encourages marrying for citizenship, and we've probably already got some undercover business involved in marrying and divorcing for money in exchange for free citizenship.
Visiting rights in jails are the same as for hospitals, although jails might put a cap on the number of people who can visit at once or total.

There. Every single right that my opponent cited should not be restricted to married peoples only. Therefore, there is no reason for government involvement in marriage.

Now that I've established that, I'll switch back to refuting the relevant contentions.

Contention 2: The Utility Factor
My opponent claims that he claimed that we could legalize gay marriage without tax cuts. However, he did not. The rights from the legalization of gay marriage besides tax cuts were only brought up in this last round. He has now claimed that we could legalize gay marriage without tax cuts, and no sooner. Additionally, I have already shown that the rights of marriage are discriminatory, and either nobody should get them (tax cuts, exemptions, etc.) or everybody should get them (hospital visits, inheritance, etc.).

Contention 3: Gay marriage bans violate the equal protection clause of the 14th amendment.
"Mongeese argues that by legalizing gay marriage we would inevitably have to allow pedophilia, polygamy, and bestiality. However, he does this without showing why gay marriage would lead to pedophilia or bestiality."
My opponent thinks that gay marriage would have to "lead" to polygamy. However, polygamy already exists [2], and has always existed, and is probably even older than gay marriage itself. People are currently trying to gain polygamy rights [3]. Therefore, to assume that gay marriage must "lead" to polygamy for polygamy to exist is fallacious in itself.

Contention 2: It is discriminatory for marriage to be legal in the United States.
"I did no such thing. And in case you have become confused let me once again state that I'm advocating for government recognized gay marriages. I've never switched my argument in favor of non-government recognized marriages."
My opponent did such a thing when he claimed that tax cuts weren't necessary. However, now that he has added marriage rights, this is no longer the case. However, I have already defeated the marriage rights above.
Additionally, he asks why granting benefits to certain people but not others. This is what discrimination means [4].
My opponent then cites legal protection for married couples that really should be accessible by anyone. See the list above.

Contention 3: The United States lacks the power to legalize gay marriage.
"My opponent has entirely dropped his third argument and probably hopes that you won't notice."
Why would I hope that one of my arguments goes unnoticed? I'm merely dropping the argument, like I did with the Harm Principle, because I don't disagree with any part of the Harm Principle.

Conclusion Analysis:
"[M]y opponent has ignored both of my arguments regarding the constitutionality of gay marriage."
That's because I've directed my argument at the necessity of it. I have involved no discrimination in my case.
"...if we were to legalize gay marriage we would also have to legalize bestiality, pedophilia, and marriage to inanimate objects."
Anything short of that would be, as I've said, discriminatory.
"From there he decides to abandon his third argument..."
I've dropped the argument, as I no longer need it.
"Consequentially, the outcome of this debate should be obvious."
Why, yes, it should.
"People have the right to marry the person of their preference..."
Absolutely.
"...and enjoy the legal protections that go along with that marriage."
No, because those legal protections are discriminatory, and should be available to all, married and non-married.
"I have conclusively shown this using both the constitution and teleological ethics."
My opponent seems to think that he has justified discrimination. He is quite wrong.
"...our government helps foster the social stability that is overall beneficial to children and their parents."
Amazingly, the entire article about marriage's benefits did not mention government at all, so my opponent's contention is irrelevant. Government is not needed.
"(Vote Pro)"
I have shown all government involvement in marriage to be completely discriminatory against non-married people. Vote Con.

1. http://www.nolo.com...
2. http://people.howstuffworks.com...
3. http://www.pro-polygamy.com...
4. http://www.merriam-webster.com...
Debate Round No. 3
101 comments have been posted on this debate. Showing 1 through 10 records.
Posted by mongeese 7 years ago
mongeese
smc, spinnerclotho, kingofslash5, AquaGekko23, LameDuck, the_Anarchist_Opposition, Vi_Veri, theLwerd, atheistman, and MistahKurtz, stop vote bombing my debates.
Posted by Freeman 7 years ago
Freeman
Witty11, stop vote bombing my debates.
Posted by Vi_Veri 7 years ago
Vi_Veri
I'll give you a heads up when I read it and I'll give you both an RFD and a vote : )
Posted by mongeese 7 years ago
mongeese
Vi, going past the negative connotations of my position, what was your take on the debate?
Posted by Vi_Veri 7 years ago
Vi_Veri
lol wow, make a statement without backing yourself up there? That makes it sound real convincing
Posted by UltraGuru27 7 years ago
UltraGuru27
We should not allow gay marriage
Posted by Haezed 7 years ago
Haezed
An interesting debate. I've been married for over 26 years, am a divorce lawyer but will admit that I rankle at the religious aspects of marriage. What do states with civil unions offer that marriage does not?

I would love for gay marriage to be legalized because (i) it's the right thing to do and (ii) it would mean more work for me! (just kidding)

I would note there is some slippage in the debate from "should" gay marriage be legal and whether it "must" be legal according to the U.S. Constitution. It is entirely possible for the Constitution to impose something that shouldn't exist (e.g. 3/5ths compromise). I suppose the argument became, in part, whether gay marriage should be made legal by state legislatures because it should be deemed mandatory under the U.S. Constitution, notwithstanding precedent to date.

The first question is which branch of government - executive or judicial will make the call. The next question is what that call should be.

Just my two cents in crafting legal type resolutions in the future. Say who is making the thing legal.

I'm going to have to read the debate again to figure out who I think wins.

Again, I'm not nitpicking; I completely enjoyed the debate.

Jim
Posted by mongeese 7 years ago
mongeese
Annbella, did you read the debate? I switched the debate from heteros vs. homos to government recognizing marriage vs. marriage being independent of government.
Posted by Annbella 7 years ago
Annbella
i am with you on this one Pro i mean i think that Gays should be able to get married because it's no different if a girl and a guy get married just the sexs are different i mean if two men are in love then they should be able to get married like if a girl and guy in love then we can get married!!!
Posted by tBoonePickens 7 years ago
tBoonePickens
Now mongeese did not win this debate is beyond me.

Funny thing is that what mongeese is promoting is EXACTLY what will end up happening to marriage. Same thing that happens to everything else that people screw up...it get's taken away.

Marriage (i.e. entering into contract) is not a right; not found in the constitution or the Bill of Rights. The Supreme Court (Loving vs Virginia) was a case about miscegenation between a man and a woman of differing races.
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Reasons for voting decision: Homosexuality is a sin!
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