Solution to the Gay Marriage Term Paper

Excerpt from Term Paper :

In fact, the language specifically includes all people in an effort to create a place where all people are free. A law that infringes upon the rights of a citizen to be free is a law that must be changed.

The second part of the 14th amendment upon which the ban on gay marriage infringes is the right to property. Married couples share a great number of benefits not available to persons without a certificate of marriage. One of these benefits falls under the heading of Estate Planning. A married person inherits a portion of the spouse's estate after the spouse dies. A married person also receives an exemption from estate and gift taxes if property is given or left to the spouse. Gay couples are not allowed to receive these benefits in most states, because they are not allowed to be married in most states (NOLO).

Another property benefit gay couples cannot receive is the family benefit. Under the family benefit is the right to receiving equitable division of property should a divorce take place. As it stands, gay couples that break up are not afforded this protection since they are not recognized as married couples (NOLO).

The third property benefit that gay couples are denied is the housing benefit. The housing benefit allows married couples to live in neighborhoods that are zoned for families only. It also allows for the automatic renewing of leases signed by one's spouse. As far as the property issue goes, gay couples do not inherit a portion of the spouse's estate after the spouse dies, they are not allowed to be exempted from the estate or gift taxes imposed by the federal government, they are not afforded an equitable division of property should there be a break-up, nor are they allowed to live in neighborhoods zoned for families only, all because they are not legally allowed to be married.

While the 14th amendment to the constitution guarantees all citizens the rights to liberty and property, the failure of the federal government to recognize the marriage of its same-sex citizens directly infringes upon these rights. In fact, even for persons residing in one of the places that have legalized same-sex marriage, the federal benefits still do not apply because the federal government does not recognize same-sex relationships. This is a law that must be changed because it is in direct violation of the 14th Amendment to the constitution.

Legal precedent has been set for the changing of marriage laws that are considered unjust. Up until 1967, interracial marriages were illegal (Mathabane). Before the U.S. Supreme Court ruled in favor of a couple facing charges of breaking this law, interracial marriage was treated as a felony punishable by five years in a state penitentiary (Methabane). During this case, the Supreme Court counted marriage as one of the "vital personal rights" protected under the 14th Amendment. Gay marriage is not punishable by prison time, but failure to recognize the marriages of one entire group of U.S. citizens goes against the Declaration of Independence, the U.S. Constitution, and the interpretation of the U.S. Constitution by the Supreme Court in 1967.

The Federal government and state governments should focus on what brings people together, rather than what keeps them apart. Strong families are valuable, lasting domestic partnerships are essential, and communities that are populated by persons with recognized and sanctioned bonds to one another are central to the strength and vitality of the United States of America. Regardless of personal opinions on the issue of homosexuality, gays are members of American society. They are doctors, teachers, athletes, musicians, actors, family members, friends, and yes, even soldiers. They are human beings who are denied a basic, essential right, a right that is guaranteed by the founding documents of the United States. It is time to legalize gay marriage.

Works Cited

Mathabane, Gail. "Gays face same battle interracial couple fought." USA Today. 25 Jan.

2004. Web. 17 Mar. 2010.

Olson, Theodore B. "The Conservative Case for Gay Marriage." Newsweek. 18 Jan.

2010: 68 -- 70. Print.

Urbina, Ian. "Gay Marriage is Legal in U.S. Capital." The New York Times. 3…

Sources Used in Document:

Works Cited

Mathabane, Gail. "Gays face same battle interracial couple fought." USA Today. 25 Jan.

2004. Web. 17 Mar. 2010.

Olson, Theodore B. "The Conservative Case for Gay Marriage." Newsweek. 18 Jan.

2010: 68 -- 70. Print.

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