It’s the perennial debate. Should people be allowed to marry a member of their own sex? Should marriage be redefined to include male-male and female-female couplings? No one can seem to agree. In California, the passage of Proposition 8 struck down the California Supreme Court’s decision that banning gay marriage was unconstitutional and on par with discriminating against people based on gender or race. On the other side of things, Connecticut legalized gay marriage, making it only the second state in the union to allow same-sex couples to marry. To be fair, other states allow civil unions with varying degrees of benefits, however, the Defense of Marriage Act of 1996 means that states without gay marriage are not obliged to recognize same-sex marriages from states that do allow them. So, it’s obvious the debate has a long way to go.
My opinion on the issue is mixed. I see no reason same-sex couples shouldn’t get the same benefits as heterosexual couples. I also don’t have anything against calling it marriage. Language is fluid. Definitions change as society changes. However, I am not willing to push to change that definition prematurely. People naturally resist sudden change. Subtle changes over a long period of time, however, usually go unnoticed. For that reason, I advocate civil unions with the same rights and benefits as marriage but under a different name.