The Tragedy of Gay Marriage

1757 Words Jul 15th, 2018 8 Pages
Sam Schulman’s “The Worst Thing About Gay Marriage” presents an interesting argument against gay marriage that hinges upon maintaining a traditional form of marriage. He actually claims that gay marriage is “unnecessary”(381). According to Schulman, there are 4 primary effects of marriage within his definition he calls the kinship system. First, marriage protects and controls a woman’s sexuality. Second, the possible pairings are limited by the kinship system to avoid incest or other taboos. Third, marriage creates a situation where licit sex can occur. Fourth, it places a clear divide between childhood innocence and adult, married, life. All of which is in addition to maintaining a standard family hierarchy, in which a marriage almost …show more content…
Marriage has evolved over time. Once, far back in history, when states were run in close cooperation with religious leaders, a marriage was strictly the dominion of the church, and the only definition was much like the one above (though they were more lax in avoiding incest than I would suspect Schulman’s proposed structure would be). In the eyes, there had to be a system where sex would be legitimized, while women and children were protected from it and its consequences. This made sense when repeated sex acts would almost definitely cause pregnancy, and possibly spread disease. As religion and government split into different organizations, each retained a definition of marriage that was a bit different from the other. Since religion held sway over what was considered pure and good, it took it upon itself to retain the parts of the old structure that dealt with the morality and social responsibility of marriage, and this is generally considered to be a social structure of marriage. And now, the social form of marriage is migrating into being controlled by the couple who are being married instead of their church. The government, on the other hand, became able to define who would be able to marry and place official benefits and restrictions on a married couple, creating a legal structure of marriage that was not the same as the social one. While

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