Gender Studies: Same-Sex Marriage | Free Essay Example

Gender Studies: Same-Sex Marriage

Words: 1382
Topic: Sociology
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Introduction

Same sex marriage is a moral issue that has raised controversies in many parts of the world. It is popularity referred to as homosexuality. Homosexuality is a condition in which an individual is sexually attracted to members of his or her own gender. In a number of countries, same sex marriage has been legalized while some countries are still opposed to the issue. Homosexuality is perceived as a sexual orientation characterized by romantic or sexual desire towards members of own sex. A gay is a male homosexual while a lesbian is a female homosexual.

Scholars of sociology observe that a number of factors cause homosexuality (Gary 21). A study conducted in the US in 1940 concluded that individuals decide to engage in sexual behaviors with members of their own sex because of social and psychological factors. For instance, the early experiences of homosexuality might predispose an individual to homosexual behaviors. Research shows that children who are abused sexuality have high chances of becoming homosexuals. Moreover, poor relationships with parents might force children to engage in homosexuality. Some homosexuals claim that they were born that way meaning that their sexual behavior is influenced by genetics.

Opponents

Various groups in society have varying perceptions as regards to homosexuality. The majority believes that homosexuality is a vice that should not be accepted to continue in society. In fact, research shows that negative perceptions among various groups have led to marginalization and stigmatization of homosexuals in the country. As a result, the health of homosexuals is always at risk since the society is reluctant to support such individuals in terms of health. For instance, a cross-sectional study was conducted in 2006 to determine the prevalence of homosexuality in China.

The study was undertaken by a group of researchers to establish the extent at which homosexuality affects families in the country (Satinove 65). From the study, the percentage of young adults supporting homosexuality was very low. Particularly in Hanoi and Shanghai, young adults believed that homosexuality is a culture of the perverts. The results of the study indicated further that individuals in rural areas strongly opposed homosexuality and same-sex marriage. However, some individuals supported homosexuality based on the premise that it is a human innovation.

Demographic factors such as age, economic status, occupation, and the level of education influence an individual’s perception on homosexuality (Jenkins 27). Individuals above thirty years believe that homosexuality is wrong and it should not be practiced in the country. The rich in society, particularly young adults below thirty years, practice homosexuality. This is attributed to exposure to external culture. The increasing rates of homosexuality among the young adults attributed to foreign movies and pornographic literature.

In general, the perception of societal members on homosexuality is negative. The groups believe that homosexuality interferes with the family values in society. For instance, people ask themselves whether the next generation would be safe if homosexuality were to be allowed to continue. Many groups observe that there would be no next generation if same-sex marriages were allowed in society.

Some note that each gender has its specific role to play in society. The female gender is to concentrate on the upbringing of children. Same-sex marriage does not support gender roles in society. A number of groups are of the view that religion does not allow homosexuality. Therefore, each member of society should only engage in cultural practices supported by religion. In this regard, religion plays an important role as far as the perceptions of various groups on homosexuality is concerned (Gardner 9).

Research shows that homosexuality is illegal in many parts of the world. Moreover, the society is reluctant to approve any form of same-sex relationship. However, homosexuality is practiced in various countries, particularly in the countries of the west. Most of those supporting homosexuality as a form of sexuality have similar views in various parts of the world. In the same way, those opposing it have similar opinions. Those supporting it share something in common as regards to homosexuality. Societal members believe that homosexuality amounts to the violation of traditional and family laws.

The law in the various states defines marriage as a consensual union between a man and a woman. Same-sex marriages are opposed because they might destabilize the institution of marriage. For instance, it may discourage procreation. From a medical perspective, it is believed that homosexuality is unnatural because it goes against nature (Connelly 93).

The human rectum is designed for one purpose, which is to pass waste products in form of gas, liquid, and solid. The rectum is made of a thin layer implying that it is different in structure with the female reproductive system. The rectum can easily rupture during intercourse, leading to contraction of diseases. Another reason given against homosexuality among is that it is a threat to the human race. For instance, if all members of society were to be homosexuals, there would be no reproduction.

Proponents

Some individuals support homosexuality in various societies because heterosexual relationships are oppressive to women. This is particularly a view held by women in the developed countries. Women in the developed countries claim that homosexuality, especially lesbianism, liberates women from the hands of men. In such societies, those supporting homosexuality claim that sexual orientation is a basic right.

Therefore, those practicing same-sex relationships should not be discriminated against. Homosexuals give two major reasons why they engage in same-sex relationships. One of the reasons is that it is a human innovation, which leads to enjoyment of sex. The second reason is that homosexuality is a result of genetic makeup (Rind 48). Therefore, homosexuality should be allowed to exist in society.

Homosexuality practices are high among individuals in early twenties. Moreover, women practice homosexuality more as compared to men. In the Australian society for example, homosexuals have children meaning they might be engaging in homosexuality but they also marry members of the opposite sex for procreation. In fact, a research conducted in 2001 indicated that homosexuals live with children they might have acquired during their previous heterosexual relationships (Szymanski and Carr 40).

This means that the issue of procreation should not be used to deny homosexuals their rights. Unlike in developing countries, technology is sometimes used to reinforce homosexual relationships. Since gays might be in need of children, they seek the services of experts in order to get children. They may employ modern technologies such as surrogate motherhood and the use of test tubes to acquire children. In terms of education, research shows that homosexuals in developed countries have higher academic qualifications as compared to other individuals in heterosexual relationships.

This implies that homosexuals have adequate knowledge regarding disease protection. A report conducted in 2001 suggested that gays have many degrees while lesbians have at least a college diploma. Since an individual has the right to privacy, same sex marriage should be allowed because grownups should be allowed to practice things that satisfy them.

As long as people agree to have consensual sex, the state or society should not interfere. However, the act should always be done in privacy (Layte 67). Some observe that same sex marriage and homosexuality is a human innovation that leads to happiness. Homosexuality is human creativity that can increase happiness among individuals. Since homosexuality is genetic, some scholars note that homosexuals should be allowed to marry. Various studies show that homosexuality is a condition that cannot be controlled. Therefore, allowing homosexuals to marry will be doing justice to them (Burt 28).

Conclusion

Sexuality is the capability of human beings to have erotic relationships and reactions. In the modern society, sociologists define sexuality in terms of sexual attraction, which is influenced by an individual’s sexual orientation. In this case, an individual can be attracted to any gender. From a social perspective, there are four major forms of sexual orientations, including heterosexuality (opposite sex attraction), homosexuality (same sex attraction), bisexuality (attraction to all sexes), and asexuality (inability to develop a sexual orientation).

Human sexuality is influenced by educational, political, legal, and philosophical factors. In other words, sexuality is usually understood through observation of ethical issues, religion, spirituality, and morality. Scholars observe that sexuality is not in any way related to gender. Based on this definition, an individual should be allowed to practice the form of sexuality that pleases him or her.

Works Cited

Jenkins, Philip. Moral Panic: Changing Concepts of the Child Molester in Modern America. New Haven: Yale University Press, 1998. Print.

Layte, Rubin. The Irish study of sexual health and relationships. Dublin: Crisis Pregnancy Agency, 2006. Print.

Burt, Brian. “Gay Leader Says Dream Is to ‘Promote Homosexuality’ in Schools.” Lambda Report on Homosexuality, 4.1 (1998): 1-31. Print.

Rind, Bruce, Tromovitch, Philip, and Bauserman, Robert. “A Meta-Analytic Examination of Assumed Properties of Child Sexual Abuse Using College Samples.” Psychological Bulletin, 124.1 (1998): 46-71. Print.

Connelly, Joel. Washington approves same-sex marriage.

Gardner, David. Maine Passes Gay Marriage in Historic ‘Question 1’ Vote. Huffingtonpost.com.

Gary, John. Same-sex Couples and the Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual Population: New Estimates from the American Community Survey. Sexual Orientation Law and Public Policy, 3.1 (2010), 18-28. Print.

Szymanski, Dawn, and Carr, Erika. “The roles of gender role conflict and internalized heterosexism in gay and bisexual men’s psychological distress: Testing two mediation models.” Psychology of Men & Masculinity, 9.1 (2008), 40–54. Print.