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The Daily Wildcat

The Daily Wildcat

 

Pinky promise

The fear mongers have struck again. Opposition to a recent law in Maine, which granted same-sex marriage, is attempting to dislodge civil advancement with a simple, yet powerful ally — fear.

Propositions attempting to obstruct social progress have erupted all over the country, including Arizona and California.

Last year, Arizona gay marriage detractors succeeded in passing Proposition 102, which read, “”Only a union of one man and one woman shall be valid or recognized as a marriage in this state.””

In the same year I watched in disgust as the Prop. 8 advertisements debuted in California. I remember a commercial portraying two caring parents appalled by a teacher’s attempt to teach their child that “”boys could marry other boys.””

“”It’s already happened in Massachusetts. Gay marriage will be taught in our schools unless we vote ‘yes’ on Proposition 8,”” the teacher in the video concludes.

Sure enough, the fear mongers succeeded in enticing enough trepidation regarding school curriculum with false information that the proposition passed with flying colors, an embarrassing failure for such a progressive blue state. I, among many other Californians, was appalled.

With irrepressible abhorrence, ad nauseam, I watched a horrifying display of déjà vu as the same commercial, with the exception of the teacher and “”Question One”” replacing “”Proposition 8,”” infiltrate Maine in hopes of overturning a bill passed last spring.

The bill allowed same-sex couples to get married without requiring that clergy or churches perform the weddings. The law was meant to take effect Sept. 12. But now the issue will appear on a ballot on Nov. 3. 

Despite the commercial’s adamancy, the pending bill would not result in school curriculum incorporating gay marriage.

According to the Portland Press Herald, Maine Revised Statutes Title 22 merely requires that the commissioner of education work with nearby family planning programs in order to produce a comprehensive family-life education service. It is up to the individual district’s discretion to decide whether or not to incorporate the service into its curriculum.

In actuality, marriage does not need to be incorporated in school curriculums at all, rendering that accusation merely a strategically-executed scare tactic.

“”The question that needs to be asked to those individuals who feel so strongly against gay marriage,”” sociology senior Chase B. Sutton asserts, “”is, ‘How does it directly affect you and your life because of who I want to marry?'””

Even if such topics were discussed in classes, the catastrophic results are difficult to grasp. This fear seems to stem from the beliefs that teaching students about homosexuality will consequently influence them to be gay.

Gays and lesbians are surrounded by heterosexuals and taught lengthily that boys are supposed to like girls, get married, have babies and live happily ever after — yet they don’t seem to falter, even though their path is exponentially harder than the alternative.

They will face adversities that heterosexuals will never encounter, and their sexual preference could be beyond their control from the time of birth, even though it is nearly impossible to detect whether such differences in brain structure and development among heterosexuals and gays are developed over time or during fetal stages. 

In 2008, Ivanka Savic and Per Lindstrom of Karolinska Institute in Stockholm examined the brains of 25 homosexual men, 25 homosexual women, 20 heterosexual men and 20 heterosexual women. The study showed that homosexual brains were more similar to heterosexual brains of the opposite sex; the right and left sides of the male homosexual subjects were about the same size, like those of heterosexual women. Whereas, for the female homosexual subjects, the right side tended to be slightly larger than the left, resembling those of heterosexual men.

According to the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America, these findings provide “”strong evidence for structural and functional brain difference related to gender and sexual orientation.””

There continues to be studies further implying an innate difference between homosexuals and heterosexuals, making little Billy’s miraculous transformation to homosexuality based on a lesson about gay marriage seem highly unlikely.

If these differences develop in fetal stages, then enacting laws that infringe on homosexual-citizens’ rights are as unethical and illegal as the racial restrictions of our corrupt past.  

Sutton believes that banning gay marriage is equivalent to “”stripping the civil rights from all LGBTQ individuals in the country.””

Sutton contends that implementing a ban that prohibits two people from getting married due to their gender is analogous to laws prohibiting citizens from interracial marriage or voting based on the color of their skin.

The question on the November ballot will read: “”Do you want to reject the new law that lets same-sex couples marry and allows individuals and religious groups to refuse to perform these marriages?””

Once the illogical fear, religious beliefs and ignorant homophobia are weeded out, the question will be about constitutionality — will the right to a separation of church and state our forefathers promised us be upheld, or will it disintegrate, accompanied by our crumbling ethics?

The law is not requiring churches or clergy to participate. It doesn’t require that gay marriage be incorporated in school curriculum. It just requires that gay marriage be deemed legally binding and a “”marriage”” rather than a “”domestic partnership.””

It is merely a promise kept.

— Rachel Leavitt is a creative writing sophomore. She can be reached at letters@wildcat.arizona.edu.

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