Same-Sex Marriage and Bigotry

In the wake of the recent Supreme Court case regarding same-sex marriage, I felt like drawing some attention to what I feel is a high quality web site called ‘Discussing Marriage‘.  This site reviews many of the key arguments for supporting traditional marriage, and key responses to arguments supporting same-sex marriage.  For a deeper review I would refer you to this site.  What I would like to do here is to summarize the arguments and responses in about as small and simple a way as possible.  And since the website does not allow comments, and the facebook page is heavily moderated, I would like to provide light moderation (if any) here.  I hope that by taking some time to simplify the arguments I can solidify my thoughts on the subject.

I thought I would start with responses to arguments from those who favor the legalization of same-sex marriage.  The first argument on the list is bigotry.  I might simplify this argument to this:

P1:  To oppose same-sex marriage is bigotry
P2:  We should end bigotry
P3:  Legalizing same-sex marriage moves us toward ending bigotry
C1:  We should legalize same-sex marriage

Premise one is a classic ad hominem attack, and should be seen for what it is.  There are certainly bigots out there, but to oppose same-sex marriage alone does not make one a bigot.  Labeling opponents as bigots is a distraction from the real merits of the argument, and serves to shut down debate on the issue.  There are quality arguments for opposing the legalization of same-sex marriage, and creating the illusion that it is only about bigotry dismisses these in a clever and unfortunately effective way.

Additionally it does not necessarily follow that legalization of same-sex marriage is the best, or even an effective way, of ending whatever bigotry exists.

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1 Response to “Same-Sex Marriage and Bigotry”


  1. 1 John Mansfield April 30, 2015 at 11:04 am

    For me, bigotry against homosexuality is a primary reason to oppose any-sex marriage, and once we’re to the point that that bigotry is disqualifying and we have to pretend that homosexuality is on par with normal sexuality, then all the little arguments that it is distinct enough to not sanction such relationships with marriage are going to lose.


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