Gay Rights- What’s So Right About Them?
“The true civilization is where every man gives to ever other man every right that he claims for himself.”- Robert Green Ingersoll. According to this quote and our Constitution of the United States of America, our country is not a true civilization, but a country where bigotry, hatred, and discrimination are chosen by its citizens. One in ten people are gay, which means everyone knows a gay person, they just might not know it yet. These gay citizens are mothers and fathers, brothers and sisters, children, friends, co-works, teachers, bosses, strangers, and more. These citizens are a part of the people that make up our country and they should have every right to the same freedoms, benefits, and rights as everyone else in this country. As things are today, gay people aren’t allowed to be married to the person they love. Some gay people aren’t allowed to adopt children, while others who fight to protect the rights and freedoms they are denied aren’t even suppose to tell their country and their fellow soldiers that they are gay.
For a child born today in 2010 that is raised in an average two-parent family, the cost is about $300,000. For every child that we deny the chance to be raised by a loving same-sex parent family, the cost falls on the tax payers, just as it does when we deny those loving same-sex parents the chance to have a family of their own. “Nature vs. Nurture” suggests that how, where, and by whom you are raised will affect the outcome and product of what a child will become. “There are arguments for both sides, but from experience, I’ve seen it work both ways, typically with the child taking the good moments with them, while learning what not to do from the bad things, and in the end, a child will be raised in a family that loves it.”-Vivian Barlund.
“Don’t ask, don’t tell” is the policy of the U.S. military restricting efforts by the military to try and find out if a soldier is gay, while at the same time stopping these same soldiers from openly being gay while serving their country. If they talk about being gay or about their same-sex relationships they will be discharged and removed from the military. What’s worse is the fact that these gay soldiers are fighting to protect the rights and freedoms that U.S. citizens love and enjoy while they are being denied some of the very same rights.
Justice Anthony Kennedy wrote during the U.S. Supreme Court’s decision to over-turn Colorado’s Amendments 2 referendum, “We cannot accept the view that Amendment 2’s prohibition on specific legal protections does no more than deprive homosexuals the special rights, to the contrary the amendment imposes a special ability on those persons alone. Homosexuals are forbidden the safe guards that others enjoy or may seek without restraint.” A private moral or religious view that same-sex couples are inferior to opposite sex couples is not a proper basis for legislation.
Currently in America, five states and the District of Colombia issue marriage licenses to same-sex couples- Massachusetts, Iowa, Connecticut, New Hampshire, and Vermont. Along with those marriage licenses, the states offer protections granted to married straight couples who cannot be married, like hospital visitation, social security benefits, immigration, health insurance, estate taxes, family leave, nursing homes, and pensions.
All of these things I have discussed, serving you country as part of the military, having a family, being a parents to a child that needs one, being able to marry the one you love, and take advantage of the benefits that come with those things should be among the basic rights for every citizen in this country. Since the beginning of time, different minorities have fought for rights, whether it was a woman’s right to vote, or Rosa Parks refusing to give up her seat on a bus, and today, the minority that is fighting for the equal rights are gay people. Society might call this a fight for gay rights, but not much is right about them as they stand today. A gay person is no different from a straight person, and it’s time for people to start putting their money where their mouth is. “It’s not about gay rights anymore, it’s about human rights.”-Vivian Barlund.