Scalia: “Mr. Cooper, let me — let me give you one — one concrete thing. I don’t know why you don’t mention some concrete things. If you redefine marriage to include same-sex couples, you must — you must permit adoption by same-sex couples, and there’s — there’s considerable disagreement among — among sociologists as to what the consequences of raising a child in a — in a single-sex family, whether that is harmful to the child or not. Some States do not — do not permit adoption by same-sex couples for that reason.”
A quote from Justice Scalia regarding the current hearings before the U.S. Supreme Court. He was referring to role models in both a gender, and societal, framework, and I would like to put my two cents in. Especially regarding the idea of harmful.
I originally was going to present a thoughtful argument with sociological studies, raw data, and a personal interpretation of that data. Instead, I will simply make anecdotal arguments, as I believe they are more powerful, and illustrative. If you want raw data, there’s always Google.
Stating that there is “considerable disagreement” among sociologists about same-sex marriage is incomplete in its scope, and misleading in its wording, especially coming from someone regarded as an authority in argumentation. Considerable is such a vague word. How about a more legal one, such as Preponderance of Evidence? the greater many social psychologists, sociologists, psychologists, and now he general population, understand it isn’t about the gender, it is about the people within that relationship. It is as if Justice Scalia has forgotten all of the domestic violence, rape, incest, and other crimes committed within that institution he is arguing is less harmful to children. There are plenty of examples of terrible Role Models within the traditional institution of marriage. I would argue that being raised by two people who belong to a class that have been able to overcome centuries of oppression, humiliation, and legal persecution, sometimes while other “sinful” practices are left legal, like bestiality, to name one, would be an outstanding set of Role Models. When compared to a traditional set of that may scream about a falsely perceived “war” on their religion, among many other beliefs not supported by evidence, and a tradition of oppression cloaked in tolerance, I argue that same-sex marriage has the potential to be even more nurturing and compassionate than what Justice Scalia is arguing for.
The Honorable Justice uses the lower courts’ rulings in a state basis to distance himself from the argument, but even using it places his position on the same side. Using vague, opinionated terms like “considerable disagreement” is comparable to saying “there’s considerable disagreement amongst biblical scholars as to the proper interpretation of the Bible”. Of course there is! That is why we have a Supreme Court! While unfortunate that it is not a court of Science and Logic, it is a Court on the interpretation of Law, in fact, if memory serves me correctly, it is The Supreme Court in this country on such matters. It isn’t just hearing arguments, but evaluating evidence in a logically consistent manner. Statements made such as Justice Scalia’s illustrate, on the face of it, a lack of comprehensive evidence, and an opinion based on such a lack.
Arguments about Role Models for children do not even touch upon the definition of a “class of peoples”, such as race, but also in religious beliefs. Religion is not only merely behavioral, it is a choice that can be changed throughout a person’s life, and every single choice is protected as a “class of people”. Homosexuality is not a choice, it is statement of being. Even if it was a choice, it is one of thought processes, behavior, and is not as changeable as religion, but it does involve thought processes that determine behavior, and should be afforded the same minimum protections as religious beliefs. Given the amount of death, dishonor, and harm perpetrated by religion (ahem, altar boys), Allowing people to have equal protection for believing they have the same rights as any other citizen to have their personal beliefs about their own sexuality and love, while still maintaining protections levied against any other loving couples, isn’t a choice, it is an Inalienable Right. Life, Liberty, and the Pursuit of Happiness, guaranteed by that wonderful document The U.S. Constitution.
I challenge any sociologist, social psychologist, or legal authority to find a preponderance of evidence that would state the alternative to be less harmful. By that alternative I mean having a gay parent that is forced into a relationship that suppresses their true feelings, breeds resentment for the establishment, and has feelings derived from those that are projected onto their children, and say definitively that such an institution is better than allowing a more open and natural expression of their feelings. And also, present such ann argument without resorting to the necessity of counseling, as counseling is a great tool for helping all parents, not just heterosexual ones. There is a preponderance of historical evidence that shows traditional marriage has many pitfalls also, many of which are alleviated by community help, professional counseling, and nurturing unconditional love. All of those criteria are necessary regardless of the sexual orientation of the parents. I mean no disrespect to Justice Scalia, and my next statement is meant to be more generally applicable: Statements about the harm of same-sex marriage are ignorant, support an agenda that oppresses freedom, is in violation of the principles of this country, and if they violate ANY community standards, then it is those community standards that must change, it is known in the modern world as Progress.
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