Last week, North Carolina became the newest state to vote to amend to their state constitution to ban same-sex marriage. Those of you who know me, know how I feel about gay marriage bans. Certainly, there is a some pain in knowing I am not allowed to marry the man of my dreams in yet another state, but the issue is so much deeper than that for me.
Because, for every gay marriage ban that passes, there is another example of people simply hating gays. And who hears this news more? Our kids. The gay, bisexual and transgender teens all across America. For awhile now I have held strong on to the believe that gay marriage bans cause gay teen suicide.
That’s because there are numbers there suggesting as much. For example, in 2004, a record thirteen states voted to ban gay marriage in some form or fashion. Well, that same year there was an increase in the number of teen suicides. The Center for Disease Control and Prevention “reported [that the] suicide rate in American adolescents (especially boys, 10 to 24 years old) increased 8% (2003 to 2004), the largest jump in 15 years.”
The same year that was spent talking about gay marriage, and the campaigns that went in behind it, where the worst in people was drawn out had a peak in the number of teens who killed themselves.
One of my favorite Republicans, Meghan McCain, said that there is a serious problem with our social and political dialogue right now. And she’s right. Because while we are pointlessly debating whether or not a group of citizens can get married, we are loosing our youth. It’s an incomprehensible tragedy.
Certainly, President Obama’s recent statement that he now supports gay marriage helps to lessen the blow, but there is much work to be done still. What he does as President to illustrate that he supports gay marriage has yet to be done. His words are words alone. Until he repeals the Defense of Marriage Act, like he says he will, this incomprehensible tragedy will continue.
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