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“The History of Marriage- A Right or Privilege?”

Tatayana Mcfaddin

English/147

9/21/2015

Annie Oakes

“The History of Marriage- A Right or Privilege?”

In early times, same-sex marriage was not considered taboo and in many cultures, it was encouraged. Random history (2011) explains that in the early civilizations of Mesopotamia and ancient Egypt, the union between couples of the same-sex was recognized by the kingdom. During Greek’s early years, attraction between a man and another man was normal and was considered an expression of love. “The main considerations in same-sex relationships in early history were often love, beauty, and excellence of character rather than gender. “(Random History,
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Through the next centuries, homosexual behavior became deviant and was punished. Due to the belief that homosexual behavior was wrong, the belief that heterosexual relationships were normal became popular among the majority of countries. By the nineteenth century, heterosexuality became the most believed standard for relationships. Although the debate for same-sex marriage became noticeably public in the late twentieth century, it was not until 1993 during a Hawaiian case, that the issue became national news. The ruling of the case stated that the restriction of marriage and its benefits to opposite-sex couples were unconstitutional. “The Defense of Marriage Act, which was introduced in 1996, was almost a direct response to the Hawaiian case, declared that no state would be required to recognize a same-sex marriage from another state, and also defined marriage as a union between one man and one woman” (Axel-Lute, 2002, p.1). By that same year, a majority of states passed laws prohibiting same-sex marriage. Since then, states have defined their own definition of marriage. Despite the fact that the debate over same-sex marriage is relatively new in the United States, five states have made same-sex marriage legal, as well as Washington D.C. According to the Florida’s Domestic Partnership (2010), currently, there are only two states that recognize same-sex marriages, New York and California. In

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