In today's post-September 11th society that is filled with "weapons of mass destruction,"" the hottest topic in the news is that of same sex marriage. Headlines opposing and supporting are covering all newspapers, news stations and even talk shows. The recent uproar in Massachusetts and San Francisco has added more fuel to the fire. Everyone is taking sides and expressing their opinions any way they can. This has also been a major topic in the presidential campaigns. Traditionally in this country, marriage has been defined as a religious & legal commitment between a man and woman, as well as the ultimate expression of love. Homosexual relationships are increasingly gaining acceptance in this country; however, these couples have not been permitted to marry. Some states have considered a new form of commitment called a "civil union", which essentially is marriage without using the word "marriage". Many politicians have said they are against gay marriage but think it should be left up to the states to decide. However, the "full faith and credit" clause of the Constitution says that if one state makes a law, other states must recognize it. Thus, if one state allows a gay marriage and that couple moves to another state, the other state must recognize that marriage. This in effect allows one state to make same-sex marriage legal in the entire country. Many politicians are calling for amendments to their state constitution or the U.S. Constitution. Many areas of the country such as San Francisco have started performing marriage ceremonies in defiance of the law. Mean while, weeks after the state of Massachusetts had legalized the same sex marriages in early, President Bush claimed to be in support of a United States constitutional amendment that defines marriage as between a man and a woman.
People from both sides of the spectrum have different opinions about why same sex marriage should be legal or not.