By John Corvino
Polls and election effects express americans sharply divided on same-sex marriage, and the talk is not going to subside every time quickly. Debating Same-Sex Marriage offers an integral roadmap to the continuing debate. Taking a "point/counterpoint" strategy, John Corvino (a thinker and well known homosexual suggest) and Maggie Gallagher (a nationally syndicated columnist and co-founder of the nationwide association for Marriage) discover primary questions: what's marriage for? Is sexual distinction necessary to it? Why does the govt sanction it? What are the consequences of same-sex marriage for kid's welfare, for spiritual freedom, and for our figuring out of marriage itself? whereas the authors disagree on many issues, they proportion the next conviction: simply because marriage is an important public establishment, this factor merits a accomplished, rigorous, considerate debate.
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Yes and no. I have definitions to offer, not a single definition. As already noted, marriage is multifaceted. It can be variously understood as a social institution, a personal commitment, a religious sacrament, and a legal status. It looks different from 4 0 | D E B AT I N G S A M E S E X M A R R I A G E the spouses’ perspective than it does from the outside; it looks different respectively to anthropologists, philosophers, theologians, lawyers, and so on. Each of these perspectives can tell us something about what marriage is; none of them is complete or final.
It is not surprising that two-parent, intact families have better child-welfare outcomes on average than single-parent families or stepfamilies, since the latter two kinds of families often involve the loss of a parent through death, abandonment, and divorce: things known to be traumatic for children. But to lump such situations together with planned same-sex THE CASE FOR SAMESEX MARRIAG E | 47 two-parent families—ones begun by adoption, insemination, or surrogacy—is to mix apples and oranges.
37 The new-natural-law theorists refer to the resulting view of marriage as the conjugal view: Marriage is the union of a man and a woman who make a permanent and exclusive commitment to each other of the type that is naturally (inherently) fulfilled by bearing and rearing children together. 38 So their basic argument against same-sex marriage looks like this: Marriage is, by definition, a comprehensive union. A comprehensive union requires uniting on all levels, including the biological level.