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Same sex marriage

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Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 6/26/2013 Category: Politics
Updated: 4 years ago Status: Post Voting Period
Viewed: 1,263 times Debate No: 35004
Debate Rounds (4)
Comments (2)
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Thank you

I would like to thank anyone who is reading this and whomever accepts this challenge.

Reasons for debate

I understand this a heavily debated topic but I have wanted to try my hand at it in a formal manner. So I hope you will forgive for repeating a very common debate but my reasoning I hope is justifiable I have taken an interest in this topic as of late and noticed flaws in the logic of both sides of the argument and would like to correct some of them through this debate ( while admitting that many of will find flaws with my logic. I am not perfect.)


The first round will be for accepting the debate and agreeing on definitions of terms that may come up during the debate. The second round will be for opening arguments and then the debate will follow in the usual manner.


These are the definitions I feel should be used for the following words that could be used during the debate Con should feel free to disagree with these definitions so long as he/she provides some form of argument as to why they believe a different definition should be used.

Marriage- a legally,religiously,orsociallysanctionedunionofpersonswhocommitto
one another,forminga familialandeconomic bond (
when discussed in this debate the word will be applied to civil marriage rather than religious marriage.

Same sex marriage- civil marriage for people of the same gender

Homosexual- a person who is attracted sexually to a member of the same gender this attraction not of their own choice but the result of many factors out of their control

thank you again for reading this and I hope we can have a great debate.


I respectfully accept this debate. I accept your definitions with one exception. You first give the definition of Marriage as - a legally, religiously, or socially... etc. Then later state for the purposes of this debate that it will be applied to civil marriage rather than religious marriage.

Marriage to many people is a deeply religious thing. I understand that you want to focus on the civil aspect, but I ask that we do not automatically disregard the religious aspect. I will focus on the civil aspect, but reserve the right to bring in the religious aspect if deemed necessary by myself.

Debate Round No. 1


Thank you Con for accepting my challenge and I agree to your condition that religion may be used as an argument if you choose to use it as one. Also I apologize my opening statement got very long very quick.

In my opening argument I present three main arguments showing why society and legislators should allow same sex marriage. I will also present what I believe my opponents arguments will be and provide pre-emptive rebuttal to avoid any miscommunications of my point.

The points I will argue are as follows. Equality of all human beings, one should be able to marry the one they love regardless of the fact that they are part of a minority group frowned upon by most religions. Childcare. Married homosexuals are better prepared to adopt children if they have entered into a legal agreement that provides legal benefits allowing for a better relationship which is suitable for the better raising of an adopted child. Lastly homosexual marriage will not destroy the institution of marriage .


All men are born free and equal. Homosexuals and heterosexuals are equals and they should be viewed as such in the argument of same sex marriage. While homosexuals are a minority they should be given rights to marry the one they love even if the values of the majority demand they not be treated as equals. This is analogous to struggle of African Americans when trying to be viewed as equals. [1] This article shows examples of discrimination in regards to marriage mainly the laws that prevented interracial marriages. These marriages were denied because the majority viewed them to be immoral and unnatural. Now in present times these arguments are invalid because we know see these two groups as equals. The only natural progression is to view homosexual and heterosexual couples as equal and allow them the same rights to marry as was given to interracial couples even though it goes against the views of the majority. If laws were made solely on the grounds that they respect values of the majority nothing would ever change. If this were the case society would have never progressed passed the times of slavery.

Marriage is a legal contract and has benefits that are provided by the individuals and state. A great number of laws that have been written that include the word marriage.[2] These laws are exclusive to those who are married and provide benefits from the state such as visitation rights on hospitals and prison, etc. To deny a minority group these rights that come along with violates the equality between all people.

Along with the benefits given to married couples by the state is the right to divorce should the relationship fail. Without the ability to divorce ones partner should the relationship fail leaves homosexuals unprotected. Divorce allows for the division of property accumulated during the marriage and the possibility of alimony [3]. Without these rights homosexuals are at risk should their relationships end they may be left on the street with nothing for the years they had invested in the relationship.

My opponent may argue some of the following points.:

  • Homosexuals are not denied the right to marriage they can if they chose marry someone of opposite sex

  • It is not analogous to the struggle of African Americans because their race which is undeniably out of their control.

In response to the first proposed objection marriage implies a certain amount of love between the two parties entering into the contract. In the case of a homosexual entering into a heterosexual marriage that love is not love (by ‘’that love’’ I refer to the love between a married couple)

In response to the second proposed objection the analogy refers to the oppression of a minority group based on matters out the control of the minority (skin colour, who one loves, etc.).

Child Care

Couples that are married are more likely to be allowed to adopt a child should they decide to do so. By denying homosexual marriage society is also making an already difficult process much more challenging.[4]. Homosexuals are already denied the ability to adopt in some areas. And not allowing the couple to present a stable home environment through marital status greatly lessens their chances of adopting a child. This negatively affects society because we harm the couples who are only to achieve one of the greatest achievements, that of having an heir. We also harm the child by leaving them in the foster care system because society refuses to acknowledge homosexual families. This also results in higher costs for the state because supporting the un-adopted child fall to the state.

Children with married parents are more likely to go to college and less likely to drop out of school. These are just some of the benefits of having married parents on lives of the children. There are many other benefits for the child if the parents of the child are married. These benefits stem mainly from the fact that marriage produces a better home environment because of the benefits and obligations provided by the institution. Marriage involves agreeing to be with one’s partner for the entirety of their life in front their family and friends. This provides an expectation from society for the relationship to last. This makes it more likely that the couple will work harder to make it last. A parent making an effort to keep the intact for their entire lives makes it more likely that they will not break up, which would adversely affect the child.

My opponent may argue that.

  • A child needs both a mother and a father so same sex couples should not adopt children.

In response to this argument having may be better for a child may be better for the child (not saying this is true it is an entirely different debate)but having no parents is undoubtedly worse than having two loving parents of the same gender. Also having homosexual parents would allow the child to become more open minded and accepting in regard to other minority groups.

It will not destroy the institution of marriage

Marriage has and always will be a contract between two parties. Same sex marriage only removes the discrimination on who those two parties may be. I have presented an example of this earlier about interracial marriage. Allowing this ‘’unnatural’’ form of marriage did not result in polygamy or bestiality.

One argument against same sex marriage was that it will lead to incestuous same sex marriage by removing the harm of deformed offspring. But is not the case harm is still present because both parties are not entering into the contract on equal standing because one will always have more power than the other and coerce the other into acceptance of the marriage contract. For example uncle and nephew the uncle is in a position of power because of the age difference and the fact that he is a role model for the younger party.

Another argument is that it will result in marriage between a human and an animal. This argument is almost laughable because same sex marriage in no way extents to inter species marriage. An animal cannot consent to the contract (also it’s just wrong).

I have proved that same sex marriage will not destroy the institution of marriage by allowing incestuous, polygamous or inter species marriage thus disproving this argument. If anything same sex marriage will improve the institution of marriage by allowing everybody to marry the one they love.


Same sex marriage can only make society better by allowing a means of removing a form of discrimination against a minority group and allowing for children without families to be adopted by a loving homosexual couple rather than having no parents at all and finally it will not harm the institution of marriage but only make it stronger.







I would like to thank my opponent for a well thought out argument and I respect his position.

"All men are born free and equal." The term equal is so broad and has so many different possible meanings as to be almost completely useless in this context. If you really think about this, no one really believes that everyone is born completely equal. Differences between males and females, between races, and even genetic differences among members of the same sex are quite obvious. I recommend reading Walter E William's (Economics professor at George Mason University) article entitled Are We Equal?. (1) He points out that the ratio of men to women geniuses is 7:1, but that men are also going to make up the majority of idiots. Blacks are disproportionately represented in Professional Basketball at 80%, but only 2% of Hockey players. Jews are 3% of the US population, but 39% of US Nobel Prize winners. If my opponent wants to establish that all men are born equal, I would need to know the context.

I will assume for now that he means not all men are born equal, but that they should be treated equal under the law. So if this is the case, lets define what the law should be, how it should be phrased, and how it should be applied. This is specifically important because it is highly likely that a Supreme Court ruling will happen or a Legislative Bill will be implemented in relation to this subject. My opponent argues there is a natural progression from allowing interracial marriage to allowing same sex marriage. If my opponent is going to argue for a natural progression, then he has to allow me the same. This will be completely based on the wording of the legislation or court ruling allowing same sex marriage. I ask my opponent to phrase that legislation or ruling in such a way that does not allow polygamy or incest. I am not arguing marriage to animals or under-age persons because due to age of consent being necessary.

Polygamy: My opponent states "Marriage has and always will be a contract between two parties." This is definitely not true. It is currently not true in multiple countries outside of the United States, and is not true amoung some Fundamentalist Mormon groups and some American Muslims. (2) Furthermore, my opponent argues that marriage is a legal contract. US law allows legal contracts between multiple parties. Furthermore, there is nothing in general contract law that says one person can only be a party to one contract at a time. Using my opponents own argument about equality, if all parties are of consentual age, why is Person A allowed to marry Person C, when Person B is not allowed to marry Person C. By definition, that means Person A and Person B are not treated equal under the law.

Incest: My opponent argues that incestual relationships between consenting adults will not be allowed because of age difference and that one may be a role model to the other.
First, it is completely possible that 2 closely related persons uncle/nephew, brother/sister, cousins, are very close in age or the same age. Also, as long as all parties are of consentual age, is my opponent arguing that non-related persons should not marry if their age is of sufficient difference?
Second, my opponent also argues that marriage should be disallowed if one party is a role model to the other. Is this legal grounds to not allow a marriage? How would this be worded in legislation or a court ruling? Furthermore, if both parties are of consentual age, wouldn't this be placing one person on unequal grounds to another person. Both persons are of age, in love, and making their own decision. What legal grounds are there to allow one person who is not marrying a relative, and another person who is? I am against incest for my own moral reasons. If my opponent opposes incest on moral grounds only, he should argue why it is OK to write laws that make people unequal based on his morals. If he opposes incest on legal grounds, there needs to be a clear legal argument.

Child Care
My opponent gives many speculative points but no factual data. I will give points below from an actual study. (3) Section 3, tables 2, 3, 4)
Children raised by a lesbian mother exhibit the following, as opposed to those children raised by an intact biological family:
4 times more likely to be on public assistance
Less likely to be employed full-time
3 times more likely to be unemployed
3 times as likely to have had an affair while in a relationship
10 times more likley to have been "touched sexually by a parent or other adult caregiver"
4 times more likley to have been forced to have sex against their will
Use marijuana more frequently
More often pled guilty to a non-minor offense
Attain a lower level of education
Higher depression rate

It will not destroy the instituion of marriage

Destroy, maybe not. But it will severly impact the traditional institution of marriage for the worse as many gay marriage opponents see it.
I covered some of the points in this section in my response to the Equality section above. What I would like to do here is illustrate that there are real world examples that show that people who believe in the traditional institution of marriage will be forced to act against their beliefs or face consequences.
(4) Catholic adoption agencies in Massachussetts ended their adoption services after being ordered to adopt out to gay couples. The Catholic church is opposed to gay couples adopting children. When they refused to do those adoptions, the government pulled money that they give to all adoption agencies. Without that money, the Catholic Church was forced to close their adoption services. My opponent may argue that the Catholic Church was wrong to abandon those children rather than adopt out to gay couples. But I could just as easily state that the government was wrong to let all those children be abandoned rather than allow the Catholic Church to do the adoptions they were currently doing.
(5) A floral shop in Washington State was sued because they refused to service a gay marriage, against their religious beliefs.
(6) A colorado bakery was sued because they refused to sell a cake for a gay marriage, also against what their religious beliefs were.
(7) Ocean Grove religious group in New Jersey lost their tax exempt status after refusing to rent their property out for gay marriage ceremonies.
What is going to happen is that once gay marriage is made legal federally, religious organizations are going to be told to also perform gay marriages, or lose tax exempt status, fines, lawsuits, or other consequences.


There are multiple definitions and contexts of the word equal. For my opponent to use that term, he will have to explain the definition and context. I do not see how the term equal can be applied to homosexual couples, but not to polygamist and incestuous persons.
To show that children would benefit just as much or more with homosexual parents, he should offer proof or facts other than speculation and opinion.

P.S. I apologize for the spacing on this round. The formatting got off and I just could not get it fixed.
Debate Round No. 2


Thankyou Con for your excellent arguments.


I apologize for not making myself clear on the equality argument. I did mean as you correctly assumed that all men are born equal in the eyes of the law and to quote the article that you posted in response’’ Maybe this vision is held because people believe that equality in fact is necessary for equality before the law. But the only requirement for equality before the law is that one is a human being.’’. Homosexuals are indeed human beings and should be viewed as equal to heterosexuals in the eyes of the law.

I cannot phrase such a law at this moment that would allow homosexual marriage while excluding polygamous and incestuous marriages but I can provide a set of guidelines that if followed may obtain such a law. The law would allow homosexual marriage by stating that marriage is the act of entering into a marital contract with one other person. This would exclude polygamous marriage as well. The law would have to include the obligations of such a contract as being to the maximum ones capabilities. This would exclude polygamous marriages on the grounds that while a husband may support all of his wives equally who is he to decide how much should be given to each wife it would require him to decide the value of a human being which is immoral. To exclude incestuous marriage the law would have to include the merging of two families which is the usual case in marriage and in some cases the major incentive of marriage( refer to the past but still in some cases to the present ). If the marriage does not create a merging of the respective families of the two individuals as a means of providing greater support for a child of the couple if they chose to have one. In an incestuous marriage no merging of families will be present resulting in no increased support for the couple or support for the future child if there is one. The larger support group for the couple could provide assistance that the government may be required to provide otherwise.

In my earlier argument regarding incestuous marriage not being permitted based on the fact that one family member may have had a hand in raising the child. This would create an unbalance in the power held by both parties.

Child care

The evidence you provided showing that children of same couples are worse off than those of traditional families does not specially show the effects on a child raised by the state (one who is not adopted). Which was my point that, that a child is better off with a homosexual couple rather than no parents at all.

It will not destroy the institution of marriage

All your points refer to the subject of laws against discrimination which are not the subject of this debate.



Quick answer to your Equality argument; Your main argument why gays should be married is that “one should be able to marry the one they love...”. But to avoid polygamy or incest, you are not taking into account love but arguing other aspects of marriage such as merging families and dividing out support. By doing this, you show that marriage is not or should not be all about love.

Equality and destroying the institution of marriage

For this section, I am going to combine these topics, since they go together very closely.

Equality is a very emotional argument. It does really well when shouted in a march in front of City Hall, or spoken by a small child being interviewed by the local news. However, the equality argument does not do well when brought into a logical debate. I believe the reason for this is that equality means different things to different people, and when you try to explain or rationalize equality, it very often does not cover what the readers are thinking it is.

Let me give an example. You mention that my arguments about how gay marriage will hurt the traditional institution of marriage are all discrimination arguments. I don't see it that way, I see it as arguments about freedom. Specifically freedom of religion. You would probably argue that discrimination is wrong on the idea that everyone should be treated equally. But let me ask you this question. Lets suppose that you run your own catering business. Lets say someone walks into your shop one day and wants to hire you to cater a large Ku Klux Klan rally in the area. Would you accept or decline?

If you really believe in equality and non-discrimination, you would have to accept right? But if their cause is truly against what you believe in, and you fear accepting would hurt your business with your regular customers, you would want to decline.

Equality and freedom are often inversely proportional. The more equality you have, the less freedom. Alexis de Tocqueville stated, “But one finds in the human heart a depraved taste for equality, which impels the weak to want to bring the strong down to their level, and which reduces men to preferring equality in servitude to inequality in freedom.” (1) In my example, you can choose freedom to withhold your support for a cause you do not believe in, or you can choose equality and treat the KKK rally as you do any other customer. In arguing that I must treat everyone equally, you also take away your own freedom to withhold your support for a cause you find distasteful.

This whole debate comes down to 1 point

The heart of the issue we are discussing is not the right of gay people to get married, it is the recognition of their marriage. I know gay people that have gotten married in states where it is not the law. Nothing happens to them, they are not arrested, they are not thrown in jail or fined. They can live together and treat each other as a married couple with virtually no repercussions. Their marriage just is not recognized by the government, and the government is not forcing others to recognize their marriage.

You mention gay couples having problems with divorce, and I assume you may also mention hospital visitation and other issues such as these. These rights are facilitated by a marriage, but a marriage is not necessary. For divorces, any lawyer could write up a dissolution contract between any 2 parties prior to a marriage, whether they are gay or not. That is exactly what a pre-nup is. For hospital visitation, any 2 parties can get a living will or power of attorney contract that is every bit as good and binding as a marriage. The benefit of marriage is that these types of contracts are assumed and a default part of the marriage contract. While marriage may be the easy way to go, it is a fallacy to assume that it necessary for equal treatment.

This is why the comparison between gay marriage and interracial marriage is not accurate. With anti-miscegenation laws decades ago, an interracial couple could be fined, thrown in jail, or punished by the law. Those laws were based on the idea that blacks were inferior as humans. Aside from a few very extreme groups, those opposed to gay marriage are not making the argument that gays are inferior. They are making the argument that the act of homosexuality or the act of gay marriage is wrong and inferior to traditional marriage.

Gay marriage opponents are not taking this stand to keep gay people from being together. We are taking this stand because we do not want the government dictating to us what kind of behavior we should and should not accept. If 2 gay people want to get marriage and live together, fine. Just do not make me come to the wedding. Do not make me bring flowers or make a cake for it. Do not make my church perform the wedding. Do not tell me that I have to accept a belief or behavior that I am morally opposed to. The examples I gave in the last round prove that this is where things are headed. You call it discrimination, I call it freedom of religion.

If you would cater a KKK rally out of a sense of equality, then I can understand why you would think I am wrong in this matter. But if you would decline the KKK rally, maybe you can understand my position a bit better.

Child Care

You make an assumption that may not be correct, and is not proven by any sources. You assume that children not adopted by a homosexual parent would instead have no parents at all. Can you prove that assumption? If an adoption agency refuses to adopt out to a homosexual couple, how do you know they would not be adopted by a heterosexual couple instead? Often children who are not adopted are placed with a foster family. How do you know they would be better off with a homosexual couple than they would with a foster family?

Let me revisit my source (2) to give a better answer to your point. Unfortunately, foster parents or not/adopted is not a category, except maybe as part of the “other” category. But just as a test, lets compare children with a gay/lesbian parent to the 6 other categories such as non-gay adoptions, step families, single parents, and “other”.
(LM means children of a lesbian mother. GF means children of a gay father)

Public Assistance: LMs are more likely to be on federal assistance than all other groups. GFs actually do well at being 2nd least likely.

Full Time Employment: LMs and GFs are both at the bottom of the list of having a full time job.

Unemployed: LMs are the most likely to be unemployed, GFs are the 3rd most likely to be unemployed.

Had an Affair: LMs are most likely to have had an affair, GFs are the 3rd most likely to have had an affair.

Touched Sexually: LMs are more than twice as likely to have been touched sexually by a parent or guardian as the 2nd place category. Children with a gay father are the 3rd to last category.

Sex Against their Will: LMs are the top category who are likely to have had sex forced on them, and GFs are the 2nd most likely category.

Use Marijuana: 2nd most likely for LMs, and 4th most likely for GFs

Pled Guilty of Non-Minor Offense: GFs are the most likely to have pled guilty to a non-minor offense, with LMs the second most likely

Level of Education: LMs have the lowest level of educational attainment, with GFs tied for 3rd lowest level of education attained.

Depression Rate: LMs have the highest depression rate with GFs right behind in second place.

I understand the desire to want to believe that children with a homosexual parent are just as well off as any other situation, or at least better than foster care or no parent, but that just does not seem to be the case. If you can prove otherwise, please quote a source.

  1. (1)

  2. (2)

Debate Round No. 3


Thank you once again for an incredible argument and I must give you credit on that the hypothetical involving the kkk (my response will be stated later). As this is my last post in this debate I would like to thank you HermitBoy for the wonderful debate and to all those who have read this and will be voting. Now onto my closing statement


Earlier I had abstracted and taken the matter of love out of the equation because is by far in my opinion the hardest thing to apply a definition. Especially in the case of making law which you had asked me to do. Love is for the majority of modern cases the reason for marriage. Through marriage people are allowed to show their love for one another and this is the reason why the methods of obtaining the same benefits fall short. A dissolution contract or living will does not show to the public the undying love the couple feel towards each other. Marriage is a symbol of this love and I apologize for abstracting my argument to not include this but as stated I could not use this argument in response to your request that provide a legal reason to allow same sex marriage while not allowing it to progress further.

On the matter of polygamy you quoted my earlier statement that one should be allowed to marry the one they love. This statement does not allow polygamy because I stated that one should be allowed to marry the one they love not the many that they love. Polygamy does not work because it is nearly impossible love a group of people equally even though it may be possible to provide for the group of people equally. Providing for a group of people equality brings with it the moral problem of deciding the value of a person as a means of deciding how large the group can be.

Marriage is about love but as love cannot truly be defined it cannot be used a legal reason for marriage only a moral reason.

Equality and destroying the institution of marriage

Equality does have a diminishing effect on freedom but only on freedom regarding ones actions towards the public and not on personal freedoms. One can cater a same sex wedding and still practice their faith because religion is a personal freedom while how one acts toward the public is not.

The service one chooses to offer to the public and one choose to offer it is a personal freedom while who one chooses to allow use of the service is not. By this I mean this is that I may choose to offer a service that caters to the needs of a target market that I and agree with actions of and I can choose how the service is offered but this is where my personal freedom ends. Once I begin offering the service the service to the public I have offered it to the entire public because of this I cannot refuse the service to any member of the public who requires it and meets all the requirements necessary to receive it (mainly ability to pay).

After stating what I view as personal freedom I can now provide a response to hypothetical situation regarding the kkk. I would cater the event because I have offered a service to the public which they are a part of. Catering this event does not make me a supporter of the kkk. It only makes me a businessman who offers a service without allowing my own personal views to negatively affect those members of the public I do not agree with. This is because my freedom allows to have my views on certain groups such as the kkk but not discriminate against them in such a way that they are negatively affected by my personal freedoms.

In regards to the religious adoption agency choosing to close its doors because the state required they adopt to same sex couple or lose state funding is discussed in link [1]. This article mainly states that the church should be exempt from certain anti-discrimination laws but only if it does not relate to affaires with the public (hospitals, schools, adoption agencies etc.) or if they accept state funding. The state cannot give money that is taken from the public and give it to a group that does not offer their services to the entire public.

This whole debate comes down to 1 point

Same sex marriage should be recognised by the government because homosexuals should have the same rights to marriage as the rest of the population. You say you do not care if they get married so long as they are not forcing you to agree with it or participate in any way. Legalizing same sex marriage will not force you to agree with just accept that people want to marry the one they love. Eventually society will progress to the point that people will disagree with but accept it much like how interracial marriage was not accepted but now is. This is because the government made laws that allowed interracial couples to have the same rights as other couples.

During this time people were most likely forced to cater these events and provide floral arrangements. Now societies views have changed to accept this union and eventually if same sex marriage is recognised by the government it eventually be accepted by society.

As you said same sex couples have gotten married, this shows that religious institutions have accepted this union already. Your religious institution may not have accepted it and so long as there institutions that do your institution will not be forced to do so.

I have addressed this earlier but you said same sex couple can get the equivalent of marriage through legal documents. This is wrong they may be able to get the same legal benefits but not the social benefits such as the symbol of their love to each other or the acceptance of them through equality. You said interracial marriage was not allowed because black people were viewed as inferior but now that they are not they are treated as equals. I think this shows that we as society treat people as though they are not equal when we view them as inferior.

By recognizing same sex marriage society is allowing same sex couples to symbolize their love with through one of the greatest institution of love and society will also show homosexuals that are not inferior.

Child care

[2][3] These sources show that homosexual parent are not necessarily worse than traditional parents and homosexuals adopting children provide a more stable home for the children as well save the state money.


Recognizing homosexual marriage will show that society views this minority group as equals and provide a more stable home to the children that may be adopted by the couple. This can be obtained without any negative affect on the current institution of marriage. Freedom may be lost but only in exchange for a better society where people are treated equally. Freedoms of slavers were lost when black people began to be treated as equals. This loss of freedom may be a good thing because it makes society grow and become a place where all people are equal no matter what their race, gender and finally sexual orientation may be.






Thank you Pro for this great debate. You gave some well thought out arguments and this was a civil and polite debate. I appreciate your point of view and your willingness to discuss it. I have learned a lot.+

I want to give another quote from Alexis de Tocqueville that I think is appropriate in this context:

The evils which extreme equality may produce are slowly disclosed; they creep gradually into the social frame; they are only seen at intervals, and at the moment at which they become most violent habit already causes them to be no longer felt... The charms of equality are every instant felt, and are within the reach of all... Democratic nations are at all times fond of equality, but there are certain epochs at which the passion they entertain for it swells to the height of fury... At such times men pounce upon equality as their booty, and they cling to it as to some precious treasure which they fear to lose. The passion for equality penetrates on every side into men's hearts, expands there, and fills them entirely. Tell them not that by this blind surrender of themselves to an exclusive passion they risk their dearest interests: they are deaf. Show them not freedom escaping from their grasp, whilst they are looking another way: they are blind.” (1)

Equality in and of itself is not bad. It can sometimes drive change that is right and noble, such as the abolishment of slavery. However, sometimes the fight for equality changes from becoming a means to an end, to being the end goal in and of itself. As mentioned by de Tocqueville, a democratic nation can be consumed by the goal of equality. This happens because the benefits of equality are immediately felt, but the evils of extreme equality take much longer to be felt.

When that happens, as de Tocqueville says, do not tell people seeking for blind equality that they are risking more than they think they are, because they will not hear it. Do not show people that they are losing their freedoms, they do not wish to see that. Equality gives an immediate benefit that is easily felt, and any loss of freedom or negative affect brought about by that equality is going to be something felt down the road. Perhaps not even by the current generation. Out of sight, out of mind.

As evidence, I give a quote from your argument in round 4. “Equality does have a diminishing effect on freedom but only on freedom regarding ones actions toward the public and not on personal freedoms.” See how quick we are to dismiss public freedoms in the interest of equality?

What are freedoms, except when it comes to public behavior? Are you telling me I am free to believe what I want privately, just not free to live my life according to my private beliefs if anyone is watching? I realize I am asking a question here when this is the last round and you are not able to respond. I hope I am not treating your argument unfairly.

But this does seem to be what you are getting at. In essence, you are stating “Believe what you want personally, but in your public life, you need to act differently than your personal beliefs.” I give you credit for being honest and consistent in your answer to my KKK question. What you are saying here tho, is that you do not believe in what the KKK stands for, but you will give support to them. If you believe this way, you are free to do so, but you are taking away my freedom by asking me to follow what you believe, not what I believe.

The 1st Amendment in the Bill of Rights ensures the Right of Assembly. In NAACP v. Alabama in 1958, the Supreme court ruled that the Right of Assembly also included the Right of Association. (2) The Right of Association is that we can choose who we associate with. You are free to choose to associate yourself with the KKK in regards to my example, but I should also be free to not associate myself with the KKK if I so choose.

What good is freedom if I cannot express it in public? You say that my freedom to believe what I want to in private is still intact, but then you also state that “Recognizing homosexual marriage will show that society views this minority group as equals... Freedom may be lost, but only in exchange for a better society where people are treated equally.” You again show the willingness to trade freedom for equality. In essence you are saying that federal recognition of homosexual marriage will show what society believes. Will it show what society believes personally, or publicly? Having the government create laws is not the way to go about this.

America is not founded on the government making decisions for us, it is founded on the people making the decisions, and the government protecting those decisions. If society believes homosexuals should be allowed to marry, then any change made in this regard should not be forced upon us by the government, but should come about by freedom of association in society. If a restaurant does not believe in gay marriage, but you do, do not go there. If an actor does not hold views you believe in, do not watch their movies. If a group has views that are reprehensible to you, do not cater their event. Eventually society will show their belief by how people live their lives, who they associate with, and what they support.


America was founded on the idea of freedom. The Constitution is a document that enables and secures freedom. The trend lately is to discard freedom in the desire for equality, but I fear it is as de Tocqueville stated, that the passion for equality has swelled to the height of fury. At this point, freedom gives way, and equality increases, and changes the very purpose of the founding of the United States. Walter E. Williams stated, “The true test of one's commitment to freedom of association doesn't come when he permits people to associate in ways he deems appropriate. It comes when he permits people to voluntarily associate in ways he deems offensive.” (3) If equality is your goal, freedom will be put aside, and eventually it will be discovered that freedom has been lost, and will never be regained. At that time, the only thing left is to enjoy the equality in slavery that you have earned.

  1. (1)



Debate Round No. 4
2 comments have been posted on this debate. Showing 1 through 2 records.
Posted by cadorette 4 years ago
hi Hermitboy i would like to ask that we redo our debate with a longer voting period using the same arguments. I ask this because i would like to know who won. I have no problem with tying in the debate your arguments were great I would just like the result to determined by at least a few voters.
Posted by saartje_193 4 years ago
i'm pro, no matter what Con says, it should be legal, maybe another name if it has to, but the same content. it souldn't be something to argue about, it's in the human rights that everybody is equal, so you can't deny them to marry if other people can too. it's just ridiculous that religous people have so much to say in this matter, if i believe that eating ice cream is a sin that will send you to hell, i'm not going to make it illegal.
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