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Gay Marriage




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    The Summer Scholars who argued for the affirmative side included Caitlin Guthoff, Ryan Edwards, and Alana Garvin. The negative side consisted of Aysha Khan, Will Jobs, and Ruby Garg. The question panel included Dev Jani, Seth Wallin, and Vinson Wang. Chris Hauff was the moderator.
    Homosexual marriages have become a controversial issue nationwide as well as locally. With extensive research on the issue of gay marriage, summer scholars presented a debate on same-sex marriages. Vital issues were addressed from the negative and affirmative sides.
    The affirmative side presented five arguments:
~Love between two people should be recognized as love in the eyes of the law.
~Homosexual couples adopting kids will give impoverished children a home.
~If married, gay people should be able to enjoy the same tax benefits and hospital visitation rights as straight people.
~Refusing to acknowledge homosexual marriage is a violation of civil rights.
~Religion cannot be used as a basis to deny gay marriage; there is no established religion in America.
~The affirmative side declared that refusing to acknowledge gay rights is analogous to discriminating against people based on race.
  The negative side of the debate rebutted the affirmative arguments by proclaiming that if gay marriages were to be legal, a culture war would break out. The negative side depicted the psychological impact of homosexual parents on adopted children stating that love from a mother and a father is essential to a child’s mental health. The negative side also rebutted the hospital visitation argument explaining that terminally ill patients could dictate visitation rights. The negative side also claimed that marriage is being used as a political tool to achieve political goals and has lost its traditional foundation of love.
    The Village of New Paltz Mayor Jason West placed himself in the midst of the gay marriage issue by conducting gay marriages. He appeared on the front pages of newspapers and was charged with 19 counts of misdemeanor charges for his practices. Jason West played the role of the respondent in the gay marriage debate. West said that laws are passed to satisfy the elite, not all Americans. West states homosexuality is biological; therefore, discriminating against a person because of nature is the worst possible discrimination.

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