Attitude to Same Sex Relationships
Same sex relationships are viewed as immoral and unethical by a majority of people in the world. Society has, however, recognized the presence of homosexuality in different age groups, especially the youths and the middle-aged. Mostly, such relationships are discriminated against and abused. However, many countries have recognized same-sex marriages, among which are Netherlands, Belgium, Canada, Spain, Norway, and Iowa. The states of Rhodes island and New Mexico are against homosexual marriage, but they recognize such marriages carried out in different countries. This topic has caused a lot of controversies and conflict between morality and human rights activists. There are many articles published about homosexual relationships in social science journals and magazines. This research paper is aimed at summarizing these publications and their effect on same-sex relationships.
The New Times Magazine published an article on gay relationship titled “Are gay relationships different?,” written by John Cloud. This article talks about the author’s experience in a gay relationship with his partner named Michael. Just like in heterosexual relationships, the author and Michael are attracted to each other and start a relationship. The affair is full of love and joy, and the author describes it as “unshakable” (Cloud, 2008). After seven and half years of living together, the author moves out as attraction fades. The author tries to identify reasons for his inability to sustain a longer relationship. He wonders if their homosexuality had an effect on their break up. He notes that research on homosexual relationships was never published until 2003.
Eighty couples, half of them homosexual and the rest heterosexual, participated in the research led by a psychologist Robert Levenson and a therapist John Gottman. The two concluded that during arguments, homosexual couples tend to be nicer than heterosexual couples. Homosexuals tend to use humor even when arguing, and the two researchers urged heterosexuals to learn from the homosexuals. It is proposed that this may be due to the fact that homosexuals have no gender restrictions and either of the couples can perform any role, unlike heterosexuals. Although viewed my many as not normal, homosexuals are known to benefit from mutual friendship which is grounded on the fact that they share same-gender orientation. Another proposal is the childhood experience of the homosexuals, where they grow up viewing homosexuality as disgusting. This reflects the level of discrimination experienced by homosexuals, in the face of societal judgment. Stigmatization of gays and lesbians coupled with childhood are some of the reasons for breakups of homosexual relationships. He cites that legalization of the same-sex marriages may help prolong such relationships.
New York Times Magazine’s article “Same-Sex Marriage, Civil Unions, and Domestic Partnerships” mainly talks about legalization of the same sex marriages in many states, as stated in the first paragraph. Legislative battle emerges in Hawaii as some conservatives call for the federal law, but the United States Congress voted against the federal law denying people of the same sex federal benefits (Same-Sex Marriage, 2012). It also discusses the conflict between religion and homosexuality and mentions The United Church of Christ as the first church to support same-sex marriage. Other churches like Reform Judaism also allowed for same-sex marriages. Delegates also vowed not to get in the way of any church that chooses to accept same-sex relationships. Other churches like The Southern Baptist Convention were totally against homosexuality and even expelled from church members who were homosexuals. Islam is also against same-sex marriages. With strict doctrines, even Catholic Church has vowed to retain its conservative doctrines and fight against homosexuality. Citing biblical verses where homosexuals were rejected as ungodly, the church has maintained its position amidst increased liberalism of the congregations and other churches.
In an article titled “How Conflicting Same-Sex Union Laws Are Impacting Employee Benefits” from Benefits Magazine dated 1st of January 2012, impacts of benefit plans for employees are discussed. Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA) is against same-sex relationships and allows states not to recognize homosexuals from different states (Todd, Brett, & Adams, 2012). DOMA has an impact on how employee benefits are taxed and regulated. For instance, they are not entitled benefits from Social Security as a survivor or spouse. Homosexual partners are also not treated as related individuals under Internal Revenue Law. Although this act has been criticized in a wide section of the society that has embraced homosexual relationships, it has remained in place to date.
The Telegraph Newspaper writes how the attitude of urban Indians to same-sex relationships has changed in recent times. Written by Monty Munford, the article explains how the Indians in urban centers have embraced homosexuals and have started to provide support to such people. It estimates that about a third of the urban Indians support the homosexuals. He notes that this is not the same attitude held by the Indians in the rural areas. The lifestyle is “underground” in these areas and no one talks about it (Munford, 2010). The people of the same sex relationships have also gained support from Bollywood personalities, especially after the Delhi High Court has decriminalized homosexuality. It this important to note that although there is a common belief that Indian society is mostly conservative, urbanization and global influence is changing attitudes, particularly among the youth in urban centers.
An article has been published by the International Debate Education Association titled “Adoption of children by same-sex couples” also summarizes the debate of whether same-sex couples should have rights to adopt children. Some arguments supporting same-sex couples adoption of children state that such families are capable of providing love and care just as the heterosexual couples are. Same-sex couples bring up children responsibly, especially when one of the couple is the child’s biological parent. Also, some children are born with likely possibilities of being homosexuals, and up bringing by homosexual parents help such children cope with the stigma from the society (Jones, 2000). However, the opponents of homosexual marriages argue that children brought up by same-sex parents are likely to be so themselves. They insist that the nuclear family should be maintained as the proper way of bringing up children (Jones, 2000). The society prejudice may affect the child’s psychology, especially when they are too young, as they cannot express their opinion about the issue.
Majority of countries have allowed for same-sex marriages, as written in the New Times Magazine. Some churches have also acknowledged homosexual rights, as it is mentioned in New York Times’ article. Specifically the Indian attitude has reflected a positive change to the Homosexual community. There are ongoing debates as to whether such couples should adopt children or not. Moreover, homosexual groups are lobbying for recognition by DOMA and provision of the same employee benefits as the heterosexuals have. The issue of the same-sex relationships is undoubtedly a controversial subject in the world. There are some people who support the homosexuals, while others view them as immortal beings in the society. Compared to the previous years, most people are aware of the subject and see it as a normalcy. They have embraced the lifestyle. Many gay and lesbian groups have emerged and are trying to fight for their rights.