Marriage: Any American's Right - defends gay marriage

Essay by TheVirginValerieHigh School, 11th grade May 2004

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There can be no doubt that in this day and age gay marriage is one of the most commonly debated subjects among Americans of all backgrounds. Those in favor of gay marriage being legally recognized believe it unconstitutional to deny any American's rights to marry; and those against it argue that permitting gays to marry would be an inexcusable violation of American and western history and tradition. Religion also factors in to the debate, as it plays a key role in American history. However, as the United States has entered a new century, these two main arguments against gay marriage, tradition and religion, have been stripped of their legitimacy.

The tradition associated with marriage is that between one man and one woman. This union does have its merit, as it has been around since before biblical times. However, traditions change and have been changing as long as we know. Yes, the United States as we know it was founded by Puritans believing in the sacred union between a man and a women, but they and their generations after, and incoming Americans from around the world have brought in and changed countless traditions as well.

If the United States was looked at from a broad perspective, one might say that socially it's done a complete reverse in the way it's run. One of the biggest examples of a long-enforced tradition in this country was slavery. Along with this terrible practice came the belief that African Americans were lesser people than whites, or subhuman, a belief that would lead to over 200 years of racism and segregation. Slavery was such an identifying institution in our country, yet has been completely abolished. Although racism still exists, African Americans have made much progress towards equality, largely because of the civil rights movement. Marriage between...