Why the Portland Raging Grannies Support Gay Rights and Marriage Equality

(See marriageequality.org for detailed information.)

The Raging Grannies support marriage equality because it is a civil right.  A member of a same sex couple, even if legally married in one state, could travel to another and not be allowed to visit a spouse in the hospital let alone participate in medical decisions if the spouse were critically injured.  This is just one example of the many health, financial and social benefits to which all of us should be entitled.

75% of Americans most recently polled think marriage is a constitutional right.


No other arrangement covers all of the same rights as marriage.  Numerous rights are conferred only  on legal spouses:

Health:   Access to health records, visitation, medical decisions, elder care (partners kept together unless medically impossible).  Studies show married people lead longer, healthier lives and engage in less risky behaviors.

Finances:   Gifts of any amount not taxed, creditor protection, disability, pension and social security benefits, no need to prove ownership of property upon death of spouse.

Child Protection:    Parents relationship respected/legal, obligation for child support if divorced.

DOMA – DEFENSE OF MARRIAGE ACT  – Banned Federal recognition of same sex marriage
Obama withdrew support 3/15/12.   Law passed surreptitiously under Clinton Administration 1996.  Violates full faith and credit between states – i.e. that states must recognizes each others’ laws.  Discriminates, gives congress power to punish disfavored marriages by denying benefits to spouses, violates 10th amendment.

Argument rebuttals:

  • “Gay marriage is a threat”   No harm has been done to traditional marriage in the many countries that condone it.
  •  “I shouldn’t be forced to support something that offends me.”   It isn’t government’s job to tiptoe around but to enact the will of the majority.   Democracy insures civil rights for minorities.  At one time interracial marriage was also illegal.  The majority support same sex marriage.
  • “Why not civil unions instead of marriage.”     Only marriage guarantees full equality and respect.

Note:  The institution of marriage has shifted and changed a lot over the years – i.e. traditional marriage is not all that traditional.