Letter to the Editor 4-13 #1

By Pitt News Staff

To the Editor,

The Pitt News’ April 8 editorial on same-sex marriage demonstrates some… To the Editor,

The Pitt News’ April 8 editorial on same-sex marriage demonstrates some glaring misconceptions.

The concept of discrimination no more applies to sexual orientation in the case of marriage than it does any of the numerous inherent disqualifiers in the case of eligibility to serve in the military.

The idea that marriage, as a civil institution, is about finding the person you love is a peculiar modern rationalization lacking both historic standing and logic. It serves no benefit to society to confer upon a couple the status of marriage under legal recognition unless there’s something that the relationship can offer society; namely, procreation.

Marriage has always been a mechanism for society to encourage its members to procreate, because societies recognize the need to procreate in order to survive. That’s why while societies have embraced such harmful variations as plural marriage and underage marriage — each of which were mainly determined by factors such as life expectancy and infant mortality rate — few societies have, in the historic context, embraced extending the status of marriage to same-sex couples.

The pro-homosexual marriage movement has largely lost itself in empty emotional rhetoric. Homophobia is real and needs to be overcome, but it is not homophobic by and of itself to oppose gay marriage.

Already, many states have laws enabling same-sex couples to receive the benefits that they are legitimately concerned about being denied. These include hospital visitation and inheritance issues. It is entirely humane and just to ensure that same-sex couples are not denied these benefits, but these matters can be separated entirely from the larger debate over marriage.

I hope that gay couples can enjoy long and happy relationships in every state of our great nation. I just don’t think it’s best for us to change our fundamental concept of what marriage constitutes. If the two sides to the debate fail to respect one another, then something major is lost in the realm of public discourse.

Steve Kaszycki

School of Arts and Sciences