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Gay Marriage

September 5, 2003 • Volume 13, Issue 30
Should same-sex unions be legally recognized?
By Kenneth Jost

Introduction

Ken Heard, left, and Martin Padgett, partners for 25 years, hold up their marriage license at Toronto City Hall after they became the first same-sex couple to legally marry in Canada. (Getty Images/David Lucas)
Ken Heard, left, and Martin Padgett, partners for 25 years, hold up their marriage license at Toronto City Hall after they became the first same-sex couple to legally marry in Canada. (Getty Images/David Lucas)

Gay-rights advocates are intensifying efforts to gain legal recognition for same-sex unions, but the campaign is drawing strong resistance from social conservatives. Supporters of same-sex marriage say gay and lesbian couples need and deserve the same symbolic and practical benefits for their relationships enjoyed by heterosexuals. Opponents say recognizing same-sex unions will hurt traditional families at a time when marriage is already suffering from divorce and other social trends. The opposing groups also disagree sharply on the effects of raising children in gay households. A Massachusetts court is expected to rule any day on a suit seeking legal recognition of gay marriage. Meanwhile, President Bush is seeking ways to define marriage through federal law solely as the union of a man and a woman.

ISSUE TRACKER for Related Reports
Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual and Transgendered Individuals
Mar. 15, 2013  Gay Marriage
Mar. 01, 2011  Gay Rights
Sep. 18, 2009  Gays in the MilitaryUpdated
Sep. 26, 2008  Gay Marriage ShowdownsUpdated
May 05, 2006  Transgender Issues
Oct. 01, 2004  Gays on Campus
Sep. 05, 2003  Gay Marriage
Apr. 14, 2000  Gay-Rights Update
Mar. 05, 1993  Gay Rights
Sep. 04, 1992  Domestic Partners
Jun. 29, 1984  Gay Politics
Mar. 08, 1974  Homosexual Legal Rights
Jul. 10, 1963  Homosexuality: Morals and Security
BROWSE RELATED TOPICS:
Civil Rights: Gay, Lesbian and Transgendered
Marriage and Divorce
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