Sexuality and Gender

Revisiting the Same-Sex Marriage Issue

Author Amy K. Hall Published on 09/08/2017

The people of Australia will be voting soon on the question of whether or not their government ought to change the definition of marriage. The vote itself won’t be legally binding, but the prime minister has said he will introduce same-sex marriage legislation if a majority votes for it.

In light of that, here are some links to past posts on same-sex marriage that you might find helpful as this discussion heats up again, especially if you’re Australian. (The first link contains a collection of links to more posts, along with an excerpt from each. Reading through it will give you a good overview of all aspects of the topic and point you to where you can learn more.)

You can read about the situation in Australia here. One line in the article is worth commenting on:

“This is a debate in the public sphere about (LGBT people’s) worth in society, their value and that’s a hard debate to be a part of,” Brady said.

It’s heartbreaking that people feel this way, because the definition of marriage is not determined by anyone’s value, nor is it a statement about anyone’s lack of value; it’s merely a claim about what marriage is. Why does it exist? What is it for? What are the consequences of changing it? (See the links above.) These are the questions the debate should be focused on, not questions about personal value and worth. Marriage doesn’t exist to acknowledge people’s worth. Marriage exists to regulate the kind of union that creates children, and it does so because the kind of union that creates children has real public consequences. In other words, the government has a unique interest in man/woman unions because of the unique public consequences that union naturally produces.