The American constitution and the Declaration of Independence are revered all over the world because of the freedom they grant to the American people. “We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable rights that among these are life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness.” (The Declaration of Independence, 1776) Life, liberty, and the “pursuit of happiness” are one of the fundamentals of the American way of life. The American dream is the idea that no matter who you are, where you come from, and where you want to go, you can do it if you’re in America. This pursuit of happiness should include the legalization of the union of gay marriages all over the United States. Many Western nations have started to legalize gay marriages but America is lagging behind the rest of the Western world to grant it citizens the equal opportunity to pursue happiness. (Gerstmann, 2004, p. 5)
Canada is one of the first few countries that included gay marriage in its constition: “Section 15(1), Every individual is equal before and under the law and has the right to the equal protection and equal benefit of the law without discrimination and, in particular, without discrimination based on race, national or ethnic origin, color, religion, sex, age or mental or physical disability.” (Wintemute & Andenæs, 2001, p. 217) America cannot go on ignoring the idea of gay marriage because it contradicts the ideas America was built on. “No right is more important to basic human happiness than the right to marry the person one loves. Ninety-three percent of Americans rate “having a happy marriage” either one of their two most important goals or as a very important goal – far above the percentage of people who similarly rated “being in good health.” (Gerstmann, 2004, p. 5-6)
The pursuit of happiness can mean different things for different people: a sports car, a high paying job or a person to love who might not necessarily be of the same sex. What American courts need to realize that marriage has a countless benefits whether is heterosexual or homosexual. “In fact, the right to marry is intimately tied to a person’s health and longetivity. Mortality rates are 50 percent higher for unmarried women than more married women.
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