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Legallizing Gay Marriage Nationally

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Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 8/18/2013 Category: Politics
Updated: 3 years ago Status: Post Voting Period
Viewed: 1,392 times Debate No: 36817
Debate Rounds (3)
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I am FOR legallizing Gay Marriage nationally. The rules to this debate are simple. 1) no foul language, 2) when using statistics provide your source(s), & 3) no disrespecting any religions and/or belief systems. I will begin with my first argument.

#1: The Constitution
- "Separation of Church and State" is a very clear line in the Constitution. Marriage is a legal ceremony acknowledged by the government with benefits the government provides. Laws making it illegal for gays to marry because of religious beliefs are unconstitutional and should not be passed, by state or nationally. Gays should be allowed to marry in all fifty states of America, seeing as it is their constitutional right.


Before I started, I wanted to say...

3) no disrespecting any religions and/or belief systems. I will begin with my first argument.
This trait is highly appreciated.

Now to start.


1) The Constitution:

1a) Freedom to Marry:

Doing a quick Word Find on either the Constitution or the Bill of Rights, we find the words Marriage or Civil Union are brought up not once.(1,2) Neither documents ever granted the right to marriage. There are two types of Rights.

A right that is owned and granted outside the Government. (Lets call those Private Rights)
Example: The right to shop in a store isn't granted by the Government, but is owned and granted solely by the store owner. If he refuses you entrance, you may not enter.

A right that is given by the Government/Constitution. (Let's call those Constitutional Rights)
Example: The right to bare Arms. Only the government may give or take this Right away.

The first type of Right is granted only if the owner of the Right granted it. Another example is the right to your own body. No one may touch it without your permission. A Doctor doesn't have the right to touch your body because the Government grants it, but because you grant it. This is why a doctor may not perform a life-saving surgery on you if you say no.

Marriage may be recognized by the Law, but it's not a Government-Given right. There is no constitutional amendment allowing it. Any Supreme Court ruling legalizing Gay Marriage has no actual grounds within the Constitution.

1b) First Amendment:

"Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the government for a redress of grievances." -First Amendment(3)

The Pro is right on one thing. Separation of Church and State.

The First Amendment claims no law may regulate the Church, and by extension, it's institutions. The written concept of Separation of Church and State came from a letter from Thomas Jefferson in 1802, over a decade after the Bill of Rights was signed.(4)

The Separation of Church and State is two way... The Church may not rule over the State, and vice versa. For this reason we conclude the debate by answering the question of whom governs Marriage.

Since Marriage isn't in the Constitution, we can conclude it's not a Constitutional Right. Marriage has, for centuries, been a Religious Institution, this means that in no way may the Government write laws regarding the granting of Marriage, as Marriage is under the ownership of the Church (Religion). In America, Marriage is often an Institution of the Christian Church.

As written in the Constitution, the State may "make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof;" One exercise of the Church is granting Marriage. The Government make no law prohibiting (or by extension, restricting) the free exercise of the Church, including who they may choose to grant Marriage to.

Separation of Church and State doesn't only apply when it's convenient for the State or Gay people. It's in place for both sides at all times. The State may not get involved in a Religious Institution (like Marriage) and make laws regarding it. Since Marriage isn't a Constitutional Right, only the Church may decide who can get married.

One method of avoiding this was done by Vermont in 2000, that didn't legalize Gay Marriage, but instead Instituted a Government-owned institution, the Civil Union. The Civil Union was similar to Marriage, but wasn't owned by a Church. Because of this, the Civil Union could be granted freely to anyone.


2) The Civil Union:

The Gay Rights Advocates, who fail to realize that Marriage isn't a Constitutional Right, scream for the unfair intrusion on a Religious Institution, therefore breaking the concept of Separation of Church and State. To break this wall of separation, you must also allow the Church to freely have say in Government, since Government now has say in Church.

Vermont had originally established a Union of it's own for Gay people to use, as to avoid establishing a restrictive law on the Rights of the Church. Not long after, the Gay Advocates demanded more.

The Civil Union:
:A legal union of a same-sex couple, sanctioned by a civil authority.(5)
:The legal status that ensures to same-sex couples specified rights and responsibilities of married couples.(6)
:A relationship between a couple that is legally recognized by a governmental authority and has many of the rights and
responsibilities of marriage.(7)

The question of whether Marriage should be available to everyone isn't the Governments to answer, and so the Civil Union was created. If the Church doesn't offer Marriage to everyone, it's their right to do so.

An example of this is one's house. If you don't want people of a curtain race entering your house, than that is your decision to make. The Government may not force you to allow them in. Your decision may be questionable, but it's yours none-the-less and only yours.

If the Church refuses to open their Institution to something they consider a great evil, than it's theirs to do so with.


3) The Slippery Slope:

A Supreme Court ruling in favor of Gay Marriage would simply open the doors to many of the following:

1) Legalized Marriage with Children
2) Legalized Marriage with Animals
3) Legalized Marriage with Multiple Partners

A principle of the Supreme Court and many other courts is to review prior Court Cases. Many forms of 'Marriage' have no grounds to stand on as of right now, and that's good. Marriage with animals and polygamy, for example.

If Gay Marriage is ruled Constitutional, than these will have a strong Precedent to stand on. That has been the cause of many prior Court Ruling. Courts simply look back on prior decisions for guidance, and we'd create a terrible precedent for terribly rulings in the Future. We must always take into account the affects of our decisions today, and what they become in the future.

Rulings in the past have led to many great slippery slopes afterwards, but that principle works on terrible slippery slopes as well.

It's not arguable, either. If it's legal for a man to marry another man, than it should be legal for a man to marry 2 or 3 women. If it's okay to marry someone because it's 'true love,' than why not marry a 12 year old? If it's for 'true love,' it should be legal, right?

There has been a practice of setting up walls around slippery slope, that the nation doesn't cross, without exception, because crossing it once means the wall bare little weight. If you break a wall once, why not twice?

These legal walls keep the nation from heading down slippery slopes like this one.


Marriage is not a Constitutional Right, and belongs to the Church as a Religious Institution.

Separation of Church and State prevents the Government from making laws regarding a Religious Institution, such as Marriage. Belonging to the Church means the Church may choose who to grant it to, regardless of how unfair someone feels it may be.

If you feel Gay people should have a Union, focus on one such as the Civil Union. Taking the rights of the Church to govern it's own institution is simply wrong.

Gay Marriage legalization implies that anyone should have the right to marry freely without restrictions, including the 3 examples given above.

I pass it on to Pro.
Debate Round No. 1


#1: The Constitution

"The Citizens of each State shall be entitled to all Privileges and Immunities of Citizens in the several States." - Article 4 Section 2 (1)
The Government has a duty to its people. To protect them against unjust laws and maintain equality amongst them. What goes for one, goes for all. Yet, Anti-Gay Marriage laws only restrict gays from marrying. What about Atheists? They can marry. (2) Even Hindu can marry!! (3) Yet, you continue to attack strictly gays.

I get that you want marriage to be seen as you see it, Christian. And though I do not agree, you could at least go for a law stating that the marriage ceremony is to be respected/seen as Christian, instead of excluding a single group of people.

As if gay people didn't have enough hate thrown at them everyday by friends, strangers, and family alike, this law has made them feel more like outcasts, unwanted. And while they may indeed be unwanted by one religion, it doesn't mean they should be excluded by their own government. I have heard people say, " Gays are evil. The fact that a law has been passed against them is proof enough," They are now able to use government as support for their religion.

My point is, not only is the government supposed to protect us, but we are supposed to protect each other.

#2: The Civil Union
First of all, only SIX states have civil unions. If civil unions were such a great solution to this issue, there wouldn't still be an issue, and more states would have adopted it. Yet, over TEN states recognize same sex marriage as legal (1).

Also, civil unions do not offer the same legal benefits as marriage. You cannot sponsor your spouse for immigration, you cannot file for joint tax returns, and many more things. Out of the thousand plus benefits that come with heterosexual marriages, only some are given to civil unions. (2)


#3: The Slippery Slope
There is a very significant difference between gay marriages and the types of marriages you listed. Gay marriage is opposed by a large sum of people because their RELIGION is against it. Child marriage, animal marriage, etc. are opposed because they are IMMORAL. Children aren't allowed to marry because they are too young to be making serious commitments, you aren't allowed to marry an animal because it could be seen as forcing/abusing an animal since you would have no way of getting consent from the animal, especially if attempting to commit bestiality, and you aren't allowed to have several partners because marriage(or any uniting ceremony likewise)'s whole purpose is to promise to remain faithful and devoted which one is not if they are with one person one night, and another the next. So, as you can see, each of these types of marriages have legitimate, and universal reasons for not being legal.

To sum it all up, anti-gay marriage laws are prejudice to gays, civil unions are still second-hand to marriage and so are not seen as an equal solution, and legalizing gay marriage will have no effect on our view of other marriages and their immoralities. Therefore, gay marriage should be legalized nationally.


1: The Constitution

Pro has misread what Article 4, Section 2 means. It means that all citizen's shall have the privileges of being a citizen. One citizen may not be refused the legal rights (like right to a lawyer) that another has. If The Pro hadn't cherry-picked Article 4, Section 2, you would know this.

Article 4, Section 2
The citizens of each state shall be entitled to all privileges and immunities of citizens in the several states.

A person charged in any state with treason, felony, or other crime, who shall flee from justice, and be found in another state, shall on demand of the executive authority of the state from which he fled, be delivered up, to be removed to the state having jurisdiction of the crime.

No person held to service or labor in one state, under the laws thereof, escaping into another, shall, in consequence of any law or regulation therein, be discharged from such service or labor, but shall be delivered up on claim of the party to whom such service or labor may be due.(1,2,3)

This article was cherry-picked by Pro.

Pro has made unrelated and fallacious comparisons.
"What about Atheists? They can marry. Even Hindu can marry!! Yet, you continue to attack strictly gays."
Being gay is a Sexuality, not a religion or nationality. Hindu's can't marry if they are gay, nor can atheists. Even gay Christians can't marry.

The right to marry isn't granted by race, religion, or language, but by sexuality. The Pro's statement is irrelevant and poorly thought out.

"And though I do not agree, you could at least go for a law stating that the marriage ceremony is to be respected/seen as Christian,"
The problem with getting such a law past is that Gay Rights Advocates wouldn't allow for such a law.

"As if gay people didn't have enough hate thrown at them everyday by friends, strangers, and family alike, this law has made them feel more like outcasts, unwanted."
While this is Appeal to Emotion, I will respond to the second half of the paragraph. Gay People are not being excluded by the Government, because Marriage isn't Government-ran. Government may have laws reguarding it (which is controversial enough,) but the Laws are to only respect the Church's right to govern it's Institution. A religion has full right to exclude people. If I refuse you entrance into my house because you are gay, the Government is not the one excluding you because they say they can't do anything about it.

If Marriage is governed by the Church, only the Church may choose who can get married, and the Government making laws regarding it is a violation of Church and State.


2: The Civil Union

If only six states have Civil Unions, why don't you protest for more states to adopt Civil Unions? The reason why only six states have Civil Unions is because Gay people don't want something else... They aim to get their hands on something that doesn't belong to them or the Government.

You claim 10 states recognize Gay Marriage, but than I can claim 34 do not recognize any Gay Union. Or that of the 196 nations in the world(4), only 15 recognize Gay Marriage.(5) This means 181 nations do not. The problem is that this is Appeal to the People. If we did accept it, though, you would be far behind.

There is nothing wrong with Civil Unions that can't be fixed. They are a government-ran counterpart to Marriage. If only six state accept it, than focus on making Civil Unions more common, instead of intruding on an Institution of the Church.

If Civil Unions do not offer the same benefits, than propose giving them the same benefits. Civil Unions exist in text... They are changeable and re-writable. If something is wrong with them, you don't have to violate the Separation of Church and State you spoke so highly of to get what you want.

The Pro's argument is basically that because one thing is broken (Civil Unions) that could be easily fixed, we should instead break another (Marriage and Separation of Church and State.)


3: The Slippery Slope

There isn't as much difference as you believe. It wasn't but 17 years ago that Gay Marriage was highly opposed by 68% of the public and accepted by only 27% of the public.(6)

In 1958, only 4% approved of Gay Marriage, and 94% disapproved. As you open one door, things just kind of become 'okay' to other people who used to oppose it. With the changing opinions of teenagers and their race for complete freedom, marriage with children wouldn't be a far off possibility.

What the polls show is that people become very lenient over time, accepting things that was considered a great Evil and highly immoral not but 40-50 years ago.(7)

We see this in Gallup Polls that show that acceptance of Polygamy has doubled in the last decade.(8)
If we legalize Gay Marriage, why can't we Legalize Polygamy or Bestiality?
We can see in the prior poll how this works. Having a baby outside of marriage, or premarital sex were among the greatest sins in the world a century ago. Now they are at 60% and 63% approval, and have been increasing in massive amounts. Divorce, a great evil almost a century ago, is now the most morally acceptable evil on the list, at 68% approval, with an increase of 9% over the past decade.(7)

This shows us how people's viewpoints change over time. If you allow Gay Marriage, it's a guarantee that Polygamy (who's approval rating has doubled in 12 years,) will be made legal, as well as Child Marriage and other forms of Marriage we can't conceive ever being legal.(7)

It starts with setting a precedent that, if looked back on by the courts, will lead to immoral decisions such as legalization of polygamy. We must be careful what Precedent we set... We are responsible for the future of the nation, and we set the future with our decisions, and a Court Precedent is the greatest influence we have on the future.


To sum it up, the Government may not intrude on the rights of the Church, and have to respect the Church's decisions and who the church feels it should grant Marriage to. Legalizing Gay Marriage is a violation of the 1st Amendment, and the powerful concept of Separation of Church and State, whereas not legalizing Gay Marriage violates nothing in the Constitution.


The Pro has dropped the following:
: Marriage is not a Constitutional Right.

The Pro has conceded to the following:
: Marriage is not Government-Granted.
: Marriage is an Institution of the Church.
: Separation of Church and State must be followed by the State.

I wanted to return to a Prior statement of the Pro's
"Laws making it illegal for gays to marry because of religious beliefs are unconstitutional"
Since marriage isn't a constitutional right, passing laws respecting the Church is not a violation of the Constitution.
Passing a law disrespecting an Institution of the Church is, however, a violation of the Constitution.

I pass it back to Pro.
Debate Round No. 2


cyxe1024 forfeited this round.


Pro has dropped the Following Arguments:

-Marriage is a Right
-Gay Marriage being illegal is a violation of the Consitution
-Civil Unions aren't a reason to leave Marriage alone.
-The State should legalize Gay Marriage
-Everything else...


I hope people use my debate for sources and hints for their own debates :)

Pro has dropped all arguments. Vote Con.
Debate Round No. 3
1 comment has been posted on this debate.
Posted by Mrs.lynch 3 years ago
Great job so far donald. The only thing I probably would have argued differently on your side, is that he doesn't understand the separation of church and state.
The separation of church and state prevents a state from adopting an organized religion, but it doesn't deal with rejection of deity. What I mean is, the constitution, is founded on theocracy, and the morals within it. A state cannot become in it's entity, founded upon religion.

"Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof..."

-- The First Amendment
2 votes have been placed for this debate. Showing 1 through 2 records.
Vote Placed by countzander 3 years ago
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Total points awarded:06 
Reasons for voting decision: I agree with Pro, but he failed to convincingly argue his case. Con had much better conduct since he neither cherry-picked nor forfeited a round. Spelling and grammar were mostly the same, though Con's writing was easier to read. Con's arguments were stronger and less fallacious. Con used better sources.
Vote Placed by Ragnar 3 years ago
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Total points awarded:04 
Reasons for voting decision: I was impressed by con using a slippery slope fallacy, and defending it so well. I would love to see a debate exclusively over the slippery slope (perhaps get rid of marriage, to prevent what marriage leads to?)... Both sides were well researched... CONDUCT: Missed round. ARGUMENT: I am biased in favor of pro on this issue, yet a lot of ground was covered in R2 and by missing R3 he effectively dropped too many points.