The Word Marriage
Debates over terminology

Proponents of same-sex marriage use the term "marriage equality" to stress that we seek equality as opposed to special rights. We are seeking equal protection under the law. Marriages are marriages regardless to the genders of the people. It should be between two consenting adults. It is a right and we need to fight for it.

Other points of veiw


Alan Dershowitz and others have suggested reserving the word "marriage" for religious contexts as part of privatizing marriage, and in civil and legal contexts using a uniform concept of civil unions, in part to strengthen the separation between church and state.

The marriage equality may be viewed as a natural outcome of social evolution. Throughout human history all social institutions have changed over time. Times of extreme a social change are sometimes referred to as a revolution. What we are seeing today is a natural outgrowth of movements like civil rights, feminism, sexual revolution, and stonewall. Like the movements before them they will start with conservative and resistance and be followed by widespread acceptance.


The only purpose of for marriages procreation. Because this is a brought about by the joining of a sperm to an egg it follows that only a man and a woman may marry. The indeed many people who hold this view believe that non-fertile couples should be excluded from marriage as should couples who are too old to be likely parents. This argument is made by people with strong religious views as well as conservatives who believe that the only reason for two people to marry is to pro vide economic support to a child.

Tradition dictates that ties of kinship. Because past generations did not practice same-sex unions in any of widespread fashion we should not except or tolerate them. This view is best supported by a European perspective on history . This is the same argument that says women should stay at home, only men should be in the military, and other sexist comments.

God alone dictates who may marry. Religious people are likely to point to scripture and tradition as justification for marriage discrimination. As with many religious arguments, the strenght of the conviction is based on the absolute knowledge of what god wants. Which is also its greatest weakness.

Take ownership of words:

You may find yourself being called upon to defend the use of the words marriage, husband/wife or even spouse. I know I have felt pushed into the corner by words like partner, lover, boyfriend, mate and friend, all of which say I am less than married. Part of what a wedding ceremony can do is take ownership of these words. Your wedding is not about correcting people, but about helping people go from uncomfortable to comfortable with something that's new to them. Think about it. If you saw me standing at an altar with someone of the same sex and we exchaged vows and rings and then we all had cake you know what you saw and what to call it.

You may find some friends and family looking for help or wanting to find ways to be supportive. tell them about PFLAG

Use of scare quotes in print and online media.

Publications that oppose same-sex marriages adopt an editorial style policy of placing the word marriage in scare quotes ("marriage") when used in reference to same-sex couples. In the United States, the mainstream press has generally abandoned this practice. And you will probably only see it in conservative religious publications.. Same-sex marriage supporters argue that the use of scare quotes is an editorialization that implies illegitimacy.

Associated Press style recommends the usages marriage for gays and lesbians or in space-limited headlines gay marriage with no hyphen and no scare quotes.

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