Tuesday, November 11, 2008

Prop 8, Gay Marriage, and the search for happiness

Note: I wrote this during my Law class, so I don't present my thought well.

There has been a lot of backlash against the passing of Proposition 8 in California. Many different people are being called bigots for their support of the measure and it seems the entire gay community now feels like it has just been slapped in the face. So why all of this outrage and why is it so important for gays to be able to marry?

Gay Marriage
The people who supported Prop 8 may give many reasons for their support but it all boils down to one thing; they think homosexuality is wrong. They either see it as a religious issue (sin) or a natural issue (reproduction can only occur between man and woman).

People who opposed prop 8 see it as a rights issue. Gay people should have the same rights as everyone else.

I ask myself why gay marriage is so important to gays. Having the right to marry someone changes nothing (civil unions give gay couples all the benefits of marriage). It is not like Prop 8 is taking away a right to vote, or right to own property, or even the right to have relations with each other. It only takes away a the right to apply a label to a couple. So why is there so much emotion involved in this label that the modern world has rendered almost arbitrary? I believe it all has to do with the human desire for happiness.

The Search for Happiness
Most every human has a desire to be happy, but almost no one knows how to achieve it. One of the most popular paths to happiness is to indulge in every impulse that comes into our minds because to abstain from these impulses would be hard and therefore cause less happiness. This is the path taken by most(if not all) of young hollywood. Do these people look happy? Are these people content with their lives?

Many people who use drugs think that the drugs will fill some void in their lives and make them happy. The same is true of alcoholics. So if there is an abundance of evidence that shows that indulging in our impulses does not make us happy, why do people continue to do it? Because the true path to happiness is counter-intuitive, abstinence and moderation.

I do not doubt that many gay people are born with impulses of same-sex attraction. These people think that holding these impulses in and ignoring them will only lead to more pain and suffering. But like every other sin, holding back on these impulses actually makes us better and happier. If I were to act on my impulses every time I wanted to punch someone, I would be in jail and much less happy.

So, in my opinion, gay people are trying to be happy but failing because they are acting on soul depriving impulses. They know that simply acting on these impulses does not bring happiness, so they are trying to find out why they are not happy. So they have decided that they are not happy because their actions are not legitimized by society. They think that legitimizing homosexuality will make them happy so they try to get "rights" that heterosexuals have, like marriage. But marriage will not make them happy.

I am not saying that heterosexuals have a monopoly on happiness, but homosexuals will never find happiness in their homosexuality. They may find it in other aspects of their lives where they abstain from these impulses, but sin will never make one happy.

6/6/15 Edit:  Most of what I wrote above is utter bullshit. I wrote in a time in my life where I was never happy due to trying to live according to someone else's ideas of happiness.  I was never happy even though I had to pretend I was.  True happiness is loving yourself for who you are