Argument: Gay marriage does not devalue institution of marriage

Issue Report: Gay marriage


Ted Olson. “The conservative case for gay marriage.” Newsweek. January 12, 2010: “Another argument, vaguer and even less persuasive, is that gay marriage somehow does harm to heterosexual marriage. I have yet to meet anyone who can explain to me what this means. In what way would allowing same-sex partners to marry diminish the marriages of heterosexual couples? Tellingly, when the judge in our case asked our opponent to identify the ways in which same-sex marriage would harm heterosexual marriage, to his credit he answered honestly: he could not think of any.”

Christopher Ott. “Banning same-sex marriage would protect no one.” February 8, 2005: “Opponents have been unable to explain why treating gay and lesbian couples equally would hurt anyone. The best they can do is say that allowing gay and lesbian couples to marry will “devalue” the institution of marriage. However, this argument doesn’t make sense.

Early in our country’s history, ensuring freedom of religion didn’t devalue anyone else’s faith. Ending slavery and segregation didn’t devalue anyone else’s citizenship. Allowing women to vote didn’t devalue the electoral process. And allowing gay and lesbian couples doesn’t devalue anything, either.”