So I’m reading lots of articles and personal opinions on the topic of “Gay Marriage”. So I realized there are a lot of fallacious arguments floating around. I’m not saying I’m perfect, but I felt certain aspects were being verily overlooked. Human nature, right? Well, I posted some comments about one of the concepts that I feel continuously overlooked and critical to the situation. Everyone and their comments will be identified by their first Initial. I am “G”. I changed their names just for purposes of personal ambiguity and privacy.
(I do make the disclaimer that I tried to be objective, non-attacking, and just sticking to the topic as much as possible. If anyone comments, I ask that we all try to be civil. Also this is kind of long, so not for the faint of heart reader.)
G: I support individual right. I support people for the good choices they make and for the bad choices they take responsibility for and learn from. I have single friends and married friends; straight friends and gay friends. We are all people. No one is perfect. So, here is the thing. This is not me saying I support one way or another, but there is a difference between love and marriage. Everyone has the “right” to love. Marriage, because of what it is and what it encompasses, is a “privilege”. You can’t deny someone a human right, but you can deny people privileges. This is just a matter of reality.
So afterwards people within my “facebook” community started to comment.
R: Sure, but on what basis can those privileges be denied? If you want to go on believing that our country makes ANY stand for personal freedom, it seems to follow logically that our government shouldn’t restrict privilege without cause. I happen to find it fascinating that, historically, the restrictions we place on marriage between consenting adults seem to pretty closely follow whatever social class structure, bigotry, and prejudice happen to be in vogue at the time. Like it or not, this is the sort of talk that leads to your gay friends being treated as second-class citizens.
G: Cause? You need a cause for humans to deny other humans “privileges” especially when those privileges happen to be supported by said country? This is the sort of talk that can lead to people of a homosexual orientation as being treated as second-class citizens, but it is also the kind of talk that can lead to progress. People want to argue and argue and argue about this issue when this key matter is completely missed.
Also, there is another thing; say you do need a cause. The cause doesn’t have to be good at all. Also, freedom is connected to human rights, not privileges, which will lead back to what I stated already. Love is a right. Marriage is a privilege.
K: Are you referring to marriage in the legal context or marriage in the religious context?
G: Well, legal context, because the country supplies the benefits to those that are married, hence a privilege. If it was a religious aspect then we wouldn’t even be talking about this because in religious aspects marriage is between a man and a woman with importance towards procreation.
R: At least you’re honest about it: gays are second-class citizens, and you’re okay with that because “progress”.
G: Woah, don’t put words in my mouth R! I didn’t say gays are second-class citizens, nor do I support them being thought of as such. My statements do not validate people being treated as such.
R: Sure, but you’ve just agreed that the laws and mores you’re supporting lead to that condition, so… it’s a plainly logical conclusion, frankly.
G: Basically the argument boils down to say a shirt. I have a shirt. I would say that it is a human right to have things, but say someone comes up to me and starts to say “it’s my right to have things, so I want that shirt.” Yeah, you can have a shirt, but you can’t have “my” shirt. For me to give you my shirt to use would be a privilege. I’m saying marriage is a privilege, not a right, in which gays are trying to say. This is wrong. And to say that marriage is a privilege and denying someone a certain privilege doesn’t make them a second class citizen nor does it mean that I think or support that action. Your statement is a fallacy and is not logical. Is it possible, yes, but not logical especially when I, myself, am saying something else.
What I think gays should do is fight for another term, not a term that straight people have and seem very unwilling to give up to someone else, to establish a different type of legal union between 2 people that allow them all legal benefits from such union but doesn’t take way from straight people that don’t want to give up what they have. If you say this can be connected to human character, you are right. To say who would be the better people, well, gays can fight for something else with the same benefits just a different name. They can keep it for themselves and exclude straights if they want. If not, they are more generous than the straights that don’t give up what they have. If they can’t go that route then they are obviously not any better than the straight people that don’t want to give up “marriage” and we are back to right where we started from.
R: Nobody’s asking for your shirt, though. They’re only asking you to have the common decency to let them wear one, too. Is it any of your business whether or not they do, simply by asserting that “shirts are a privilege!”? Should you now have the power to rip shirts off of people?
It’s easy to say shirts are a privilege when your ability to wear them never has and never will be threatened. So it goes with marriage, too. Consider: the government asserts the driving is a privilege, too. Would it be acceptable to restrict driving licenses by race or sex? Would certain people feel put upon, if we did that? Would they have any grounds to complain?
A: So marriage is a privilege for only straight people?
G: R, driving is a privilege in which they have put restrictions on. Age, is a type of restriction. It is a privilege because of the benefits that it allows someone. Yes, A, marriage is a privilege, in marriage of a legal sense is because it provides benefits. It is allowed to straight people. Do I think to be a couple is a privilege for only straight people? No. There is marriage of the heart in which anyone can be together, don’t need any legal documentation, don’t need to be authenticated by an outside individual, and no outside benefits are granted to them. They are allowed the human right of Love and do not need to ask anyone else’s permission to be together other than themselves.
No, R, no one is asking for my shirt specifically, but they could. That’s why I said fight for a similar privilege with a different name that grants the same benefits. This gives them the right to “have” and to wear metaphorical clothing, but also doesn’t take away someone else’s metaphorical shirt. And I can say marriage is a privilege because it is. Even if you did take it away you are taking it away regardless of whether it is a right or a privilege. It is what it is. No one is granting me outside benefits when I wear a shirt. The U.S. country grants outside benefits when people are married. Say, to take away Love, then that is a different issue.
Or I should say, no one has to grant me outside benefits when I wear clothing. If you want to say “no one has to grant outside benefits for people to be married,” then be married in your heart and be a couple, have love, and don’t worry about any legalities.
A: Do you think marriage in a legal sense should be denied to gay people? Denying them marriage causes them tons of difficulty when doing taxes or visiting people in the hospital….My sister and her partner had to spend over $2000 in lawyer fee’s etc to have their child fully recognized because one of them wasn’t technically the parent. I just don’t agree with allowing one group of people the right to marry and not another. Everyone is a person and should be treated with equal respect.
R: I’ll underscore the importance of my driving question: if we restricted the privilege of driving such that only white males could legally do it, would other people become second-class citizens? Your answer here is important, because it tests some of your earlier assertions, including: that government needs no reason to restrict privilege, that restricting privilege does not necessarily create social classes, that restricting privilege does not substantially harm anyone, and so on.
Follow-up: does the ability of other citizens to drive detract from the ability of white males to drive in any meaningful way? You’ve suggested that gay marriage could somehow threaten straight marriage, but I’m not sure how that could be the case.
Ontologically, I’m fascinated by your suggestion that gays should fight for a “separate but equal” institution. Why? Because you’ve asserted that the essence of the marriage privilege is the social and legal benefits it holds, and you’ve also said that you’re okay with gays having some other institution that has the exact same social and legal benefits — unless you’re prepared to clarify, you’re basically saying that both groups should get the exact same thing, but refusing to *call* them the same thing. Why is that?
It’s very big of you to let other people wear clothes, but you haven’t explained why it’s any of your business whether or not they wear a shirt specifically, or why their doing so would impact you. You’ve just arbitrarily asserted that it’s unacceptable for them to do so. That’s the heart of what I’m getting at: in a free society, we can’t deny people privileges without well-founded reasons for doing so.
Do we need a reason to restrict privilege? Not implicitly, no, but if we want to go on believing that this is a free country with equal opportunity for all, then yes we absolutely do.
G: Well A, you asked a completely different question. Do I think it should? This is why I stated that gays should probably go for something that is exactly like legal marriage, but different in terminology. I think this would actually go so much better. I understand that there are complications, but this just goes to show why legal marriage is a privilege. It allows people to bypass these complications. Again, should be treated with equal respect, doesn’t mean it is done. I treat gay people with the same respect. I’m not married, so I don’t have anything to gain from this. Gay’s really don’t threaten my livelihood. (I said “really” because there is that strange aspect that might happen, but probably not inherent to them being gay.)
G: R, does restricting a privilege make those people that are restricted from such privilege a second class citizen? No. Is there a reason that driving might be restricted? Sure. Would that reason be a good one? No. In this case, driving is restricted, age. We as people have decided that 16 is the appropriate age for several reasons to allow someone to drive. Does this mean those that are younger than 16 are a second-class citizen? I certain don’t think so. So for you to say this, makes me feel that you would happen to think that people under that age would be because they have not gained all of the privileges granted to them by the government. Or let’s say cigarettes or alcohol for people that do those things? Are you a second-class citizen because you aren’t of age to buy them? Do other people treat you as such? Maybe, but let’s go with this.
Do you think there are people that treat gays as second-class citizens? And even further, do you think there would be people to treat gays even if they were granted such status and benefits under “legal marriage” as second-class citizens?
The government doesn’t need a reason to restrict a privilege, although there usually is a reason. If it is a privilege, it is benefits for them to grant and for them to restrict. It’s like saying you are holding a party, but only invite certain families on your block, but you don’t invite others. You have a reason, you might not like them. Are they second-class citizens? Maybe to you they are. Gays are restricted from legal marriage. Is it because the government doesn’t like them…I would say no. Maybe there are people in the government that don’t like them, but that is an argument about people. Your questions are going into the realm of who is of good character and who isn’t. I already talked about this. Restricting privileges does not inherently make people be in different social classes, cause harm to anyone, and so on. Do people applying their own subjective aspects to those laws including benefits and restrictions, cause those issues? I would say yes. But what would you say?
Actually, the ability of other citizens to drive “could” detract from the ability of white males to drive in any meaningful way. Meaningful is subjective. I say “could” because of the possible aspects, but not from direct inherent causality of others driving, from an objective outlook. Just because you don’t see how something could happen doesn’t mean others don’t. It is reality that straight people vastly outnumber gay people. This is the nature of life. Is it the nature of life to have gay people, yes, but that is not my point. Many straight people of our country want to keep the term marriage and the benefits for themselves. (To keep the benefits aspect to only straight couple I think is where we deny equality.) There are also many that are religious. For some of these people, having to share this privilege with gay people would be like attacking them at their core beliefs. Would you say you attack people at their core beliefs? If so, what gives you that right? My bet is you don’t have such right or justifiable reason (as you make point to comment about reason(s)/cause(s).) This can be flipped around. The point is, this is a privilege, and there are many people that have it that don’t want to share it with people that didn’t have it in the first place. This is part of human nature. So go ahead and question and attack that and attack yourself, but don’t expect me to give you all the answers.
As for your question of why I say that they should have the same thing but call them something different. You answer that question for yourself. It’s is of an ontological nature. Besides, I have already answered this question, but if you can’t see it, is it really my responsibility to make sure you are enlightened by such answer?
It’s very big of me? You don’t have to be so condescending. This is several times now. You might feel that some of my words are condescending, but the difference is that you are doing it with direct intent, and I’m not intently saying things in which to make you feel condescended upon. I feel that it can be caused from either you being blinded by your position and don’t want to discuss this as objectively as possible, or you are really trying to play devil’s advocate.
Someone wearing clothes is a right, like love. Allowing someone to wear your clothes is a privilege, like marriage. Straight people have marriage and there are many that do not wish to give that up and share that appellation. I also said to A, if you read, that I personally don’t care, but I do consent to the way things are. My original statement was that marriage is a privilege and not a right. I feel we have moved way away from the original statement. Is this something, an issue, that doesn’t need to be crazy and be eased off by all sides? Yes. But to go along with you, why is it any of their business to try and make someone else give up the shirt that that person is wearing and doesn’t want to give up? You are mixing up the metaphors. And again I never said it wasn’t acceptable for someone to not wear a shirt, or to not have love.
But I would like you to explain what you think a “free society” is and how it has the inherent property of allowing anyone and everyone all privileges that might exist. Equal opportunity means opportunity, doesn’t mean you should get the treatment if you don’t take such the opportunity. Your post about separate but equal has too big points that make it not a parallel to the topic. One, marriage benefits are more intangible than say schools, bathrooms, water fountains, bus seats, and such. Next also is, that these intangible benefits can be equal regardless of how people treat gays, but those bus seats were not equal regardless of how colored people were treated.
A: I know my question was different than my first….I’m trying to understand your standpoint. I don’t see the point of creating something exactly like marriage, but different….Not trying to offend anyone or have a “facebook” war but I don’t agree.
G: Well A, the only thing different would be the name of such. Sometimes that’s all people care about. It’s like women don’t like wearing the same dress as another woman to say like a ball, pageant, or prom. I don’t necessarily agree with the point of those women making a big deal, but it happens. Because I don’t agree with it doesn’t make it less of an issue in those women’s eyes. It’s ok A. I don’t find anything wrong with what you have said or asked. You haven’t come off as condescending, insulting, or attempting to put words in my mouth.
C: Marriage traditionally is a union between woman and man to show the opposite ends of the universe as a whole and it was a privilege given by both families and community involved like friends for instance. This is why they ask if any one objects to that union and if one does for good reason those two can’t be joined because it was seen as a misfortune to everyone who knows.
G: Ok C, that is definitely from a religious aspect. I didn’t want to go there, because if we did, then gay people would almost have no argument for support at all. I’m trying to be more objective, which can be really difficult at times when you bring in religion.
C: What was religious about it? The ancients lived as one with the earth and the universe.
G: That is still a religion. When you look at it as progression within the universe, that connection, it’s very religious, and with personal connection on that aspect, has to be of nature in which progression means procreation. Gay people don’t procreate. Now this is something different, because some could make arguments about how some straight people “shouldn’t” procreate, in which I would agree, but that is beside the point.
C: Pre arranged marriages we’re normal and almost everyone did at one time and families had it done between man and woman never woman and woman or man and man because it would then be impossible for that family to carry on a lineage.
G: Hence my points about procreation.
C: So what’s the purpose of their lives if it’s not procreate, “prodestroy”? Is it possible for brain washing to have taken place like blacks in the ghettos thinking they have to be gangstas and shoot people to be a man and respected?
G: The purpose of life? The “Meaning of Life”, is that what you are asking? haha. C, I agree. There has been plenty of brain washing. Does it make it right? No. Does it exist? Yes. Trying to deal with it, and realize what is most important are the real things in life.
C: To die is what I think it is, we go nowhere really. We die as fast as we come, now even faster. So life is an empty purpose. Lol. It’s like rowing against a current if you look at it….sooner or later our arms are going to get tired. So people might as well have freedom to do whatever period. Every cause has an effect though regardless of your belief in God.
I mean our average life 75 years its nothing compared to billions if people want to be gay let them it’s their choice just don’t try to push it on children and sway their choice of sexuality though because I have seen that happen already.
B: Separation of church and state should be a non-issue in the first place.
R: You keep falling back on the age-based driving restriction, but there’s a crucial distinction: that restriction is not arbitrary. Allowing children to operate heavy machinery is dangerous, and so we sometimes restrict their ability to do so. Is there a reason you’re unwilling to answer my questions about race-based or sex-based driving restrictions? I suspect it is because you know that doing so will weaken your point: you’re left with the uncomfortable choice between saying you agree that it would be acceptable, in which case you’re supporting a blatantly bigoted and unjust social policy, or saying that you agree that it would be unacceptable, in which case you’re weakening your own point by admitting that we oughtn’t be arbitrarily restricting social privileges.
Now your point regarding whether or not children are second-class citizens because of these restrictions: yes they are. That is pretty much the definition of being a second-class citizen. You may notice that children are unable to make legally binding agreements in most circumstances, and that they’re usually subject to the authority of some legal custodian. Generally, people agree that this is acceptable on the basis that children aren’t adults just yet, but also on the basis that these restrictions are temporary and only apply to the specific scope where they seem necessary.
Your party example doesn’t fit, in the same way that your shirt example doesn’t fit. No one has said that you should be forced to invite anyone to a party, or to give your shirt to anyone. All people are asking for is the ability to throw their own parties, own their own clothes. What possible reason could you have for denying them those privileges?
If someone else has a shirt, if someone else throws a party, that doesn’t hurt your ability to do either of those things. There’s no clear way in which you’re injured or harmed by either of these.
I am being condescending, yes. I’m doing so because I earnestly believe that you’re advocating for social policies which I consider horrifyingly inhumane and fundamentally evil. Maybe your feelings are hurt by that, but at the end of the day you’re going to go home and enjoy a life of privilege and safety, knowing that you’re not subject to violence, hate, and oppression based on the people you happen to love. A few decades ago, would we have been having this same conversation about interracial marriage? A few decades before that, would it have been women’s’ rights, and before that, slavery and racial violence? How is it that we can grow up believing that our country believes in “liberty and justice for all”, and then turn around and betray those values the moment they’re actually tested?
There’s a saying you’ve probably heard: “Those who fail to learn from history are doomed to repeat it.” When you say that you’d support a “separate but equal” institution, you’re ignoring the fact that historically this has never been achieved. Whether through malice or naïveté, you are advocating for the continued oppression of your fellow citizens.
You mention that some people don’t want to have their “core beliefs” challenged. If their core beliefs state that they don’t want to marry some person, I have no problem with that. If, on the other hand, their core beliefs include some tenet to the effect that gays are undeserving of basic compassion and respect — all because it would make them feel a little bit uncomfortable to see two guys holding hands — then I’ll be plain: these are horrible people, completely lacking in empathy or fairness, and I hope they are never in any position of authority or power over any other human beings.
You say that you respect your gay friends, but you’re unwilling to advocate on their behalf, unwilling to let them enjoy the same privileges that you take for granted. You say that you want to give them a social institution that enjoys legal and social recognition, but then refuse to share the one that already exists. Your actions speak louder than your words, here.
Whatever you say, the only truth I see is that you won’t fight for those friends. You’re part of the system that’s keeping them down, and you’re comfortable with that.
If I sound angry, it’s because I am. We live in a world where a massive number of people have been subjugated for centuries, and you’re offering platitudes about how much “respect” you have for them while continuing to support the very same beliefs and policies they’re fighting against. You talk about marriage as if it’s some minor thing that shouldn’t matter — that’s really easy to say when you’re the one watching the underdog get kicked on the ground. How would you feel, in their position? If you’re very lucky, you’ll never have to find out.
So, there’s that. I’m going to bow out at this point, as it’s clear that we both feel strongly about this. I hope that our next meeting is on better terms.
G: R, I hope you won’t be so condescending, insulting, continue to put words in my mouth that I haven’t said, or to place me with positions that I have not identified with. Fine, I’m a straight man. Take away my privilege to marry, I will still have love. I know the difference between a “right” and a “privilege” regardless of whether or not I’m in a position to obtain such privilege. Also, being a white, straight male I’m in a position in which I’m restricted from other privileges that there are in this world. It’s like the difference between “want” and “need”. People only need 3 things for their individual life, 4 needs if you look at humans as a whole for life. Everything else is a want.
What you fail to realize and it seems you continue to do so with what seems to be coming off as blind disregard for everything I’m saying in an attempt to twist every word I say to either support your point of view, (not truth) make me be the bad guy, or all of the above. Gays, or if it’s ok to include you…maybe not, but I feel your point is that you are arguing for the term “marriage”, and that’s the same feeling I get from a lot of gay people that continue to argue over this. Not legal recognition of being a couple, not the gaining of benefits with such said recognition from the government, and not the right to be with the one you want to be with. Change that word, and I bet gay people would probably get what they wanted so easily that maybe even over time people would just refer to gay unions as married and then it might eventually be amalgamated. If not, so what, gays are getting those benefits and legally recognized as a couple, whether or not the term is marriage or something else.
If that were the case, the term “marriage” would be an issue so easily dropped. Either side can’t get over this although the gay community doesn’t have claim to it, with large portions of the straight community not wanting to relinquish sole possession. My metaphors are fine. The shirt metaphor is about rights, and the party metaphor is about privilege. Also, it’s not that I don’t want to talk about sex or race based restrictions, I’m trying to show you that a restriction is a restriction regardless of the type. How it is the restriction that causes such issues, but not people’s actions connected to the issues. It is the actions, in which case, you can have such restrictions or not.
I’m from Louisiana. Do you know how many people down there are religious zealots with hatred for other races and other people’s lifestyles? But supposedly restrictions are what cause such issues, so getting rid of those restrictions should have caused those issues to go away…right? It doesn’t.
I support the rights and the benefits, but we are talking about 1 word. Get over it. I think everyone should get over it, but that won’t happen. Gays don’t have first claim to it, so get over it. Like me saying I don’t have first claim to Egypt, so if I want it, I’m going to have to fight for it and claim it for myself and fight anyone else that tries to take it from me.
I’ve already answered your questions. I’ve already stated my position. If you don’t want to recognize this and still get upset at the things I say, fine.
So that was a crazy time on “facebook” about an issue that is going on right now. If you have made it all the way through and feel like commenting, all for it, just remember to be civil like I asked.