Over the years, same-sex marriages were something that was unheard of. The mere thought of two men or two women dating, let alone getting married, triggered shudders among most people. However, the increase in liberalization and personal freedom has seen to it that 37 states in the US have legalized same sex marriages, with only 13 having bans on them (ProCon, 2015). Despite these perceived developments in the LGBTQ community, Anderson’s (2013) article on heritage.org provides a stinging criticism of same sex marriages. The author suggests that redefining marriage to include gay unions eradicates the whole essence of marriage. He opines that the future of the country depends on marriage between complementary sexes, in that man and woman come together to be husband and wife to one another and father and mother to children. Further, marriage is deterministic of government as well as human civilization and continuity. Redefining it to include same sex marriages destroys the foundations on which the term “marriage” was built, and puts human civilization at risk.
On the other hand, de Leon’s (2012) article on urban.org praises the developments made by the US in legalizing gay marriages. The author cites salutation of gay and lesbian service members by the Pentagon as positive change, and praises President Obama for advocating for same-gender marriages. He goes on to assert that society has realized that LGBTQs are their children, parents, siblings, and friends who are not blame for their sexual orientation. With this realization, there has been increased support for all people that were born with varying sexual orientations, which is a highly welcomed development. Overall, I feel that a person’s sexual preference is their business, and they should not be criminalized for it. However, I also feel that it is unnecessary for society to force those against same-gender marriages and relationships to accept it. A level of autonomy should be established, so that everyone freely goes about their sexual ventures without interfering with other people.
Growing up, I have always felt that one of the most important core values is freedom of speech; so that people should be free to say what they want as long as they do not personally insult anyone. According to Mill (2012), free speech has been the main reason behind the actualization of a whole range of human rights. The ability to freely and clearly articulate one’s views about a particular subject is crucial to the lives of human beings. Looking at such American heroes as Martin Luther King Jr. and Malcolm X, I feel that without the freedom of speech they would not have had the impacts they had.
Today, the media enjoys the freedom to dig into any subject without the fear of consequence. This has been one of the contributions to proper governance and service delivery. A comparison between the US and countries like Algeria and Saudi Arabia, where the freedom of speech is limited, reveals the importance this value. Personally, I believe that various calls for equality have, in one way or the other, defined my current position as a college junior. Without equality, which was gained through loud campaigns against discrimination, chances are high that I would not be here today.
Moving forward, I feel that people should be free to articulate their feelings about any subject without being demonized. For instance, critics of religion should be free to question the various assertion set forth by various religions. In addition, people should be free to air their perceptions about any social matter, including the recent cases of police violence against black people. For instance, the Ferguson unrest should be looked at through the lens of racial violence rather than mere police violence. Overall, freedom of speech is a basic and fundamental block of human life. For this reason, it should be observed, cherished, and protected.