Obama urges equal rights

The gay community should be considered equal under the law

During his 2013 inaugural address, United States President Barack Obama advocated for equal rights for gays and lesbians.

This is the first time in history a president has ever addressed the issue in an inaugural address.

Well, it is about time.

Homosexuals have struggled to gain any sort of rights in the eyes of the law. Currently, only nine states have legalized same-sex marriage.

During his speech, President Obama said, “Our journey is not complete until our gay brothers and sisters are treated like anyone else under the law. For if we are truly created equal, then surely the love we commit to one another must be equal as well.”

The president brings up a good point. We are all created equal; at least that is what many religious practitioners would argue. But we do not treat homosexuals as equals when it comes to social and political venues.

Being homosexual is not a choice. According to Neil Swidey’s article in the Boston Globe entitled “What Makes People Gay?”, more and more research has been discovered that there is a correlation between sexual orientation and certain traits that take place while a baby is in the mother’s womb.

Simon LeVay, a neuroscientist in San Diego discovered that a neuron clump within the hypothalamus, which is believed to control sexual behavior, was twice the size in heterosexual men than homosexual men. This 1991 discovery led the way for proving homosexuality as biologically based.

William Reiner, a psychiatrist and urologist with the University of Oklahoma, wonders if hormones play a role in whether or not a child will be gay. If the child is insufficiently exposed to masculine hormones, they may lose attraction to females.

Boston University psychiatrist Richard Pillard and Northwestern University psychologist J. Michael Bailey did a study and found that if one identical twin was gay, the other had a 50 percent chance of being gay as well. Fraternal twins had only a 20 percent chance since they do not share all of the same genes. This suggests genetics may be a contributing factor.

While many researchers cannot officially conclude what is causing homosexuality, many can concur that there are reasons based on biological factors occurring before a baby is born.

So why do people become outraged by the thought of giving them equal rights?

Sure, it is unconventional, and many religions find marriage to be a sacred bond between that of a woman and a man.

However, being gay is not a choice. Homosexuals do not just “decide” to be gay when they know they will be ridiculed, debated over in political platforms and neglected equal rights by the law.

If a man loves a man, or a woman loves a woman, that is their choice. No one should judge whether or not their happiness or love is real or whether they should be given the opportunity to be married. Everyone deserves that right.

There was a survey taken in December by Pew Research Center that concluded about 48 percent of people supported same-sex marriage, while only 43 percent opposed it.

The numbers show support, and now the law should too.

We should all be equal under the eyes of the law. This nation was created on equality, and as a nation, we have failed a minority. Homosexuals should not still be waiting around to receive the rights they deserve; after all, they are Americans as well.