As it is known, marriage is an important social unit since it assures the maintenance of a well-set structure and, thus, contributes to the development of healthy interpersonal relations. In a traditional meaning, marriage is the unity of a man and a woman. This idea is also supported by most religions, which are known to be the keepers of moral principles in every community. Nevertheless, the representatives of sexual minorities as well as many gay-friendly people believe that same-sex marriages have the similar value as the heterosexual ones. Today, there are heated debates around this topic; however, most people consider traditional heterosexual marriage to be the only appropriate way of constructing ethical and aesthetic relations that assure a healthy reproduction.
First and foremost, the value of traditional marriage is hard to overestimate since it leads to an essential and vital outcome such as procreation. Consider the case: “Thomas Aquinas believed humans should follow natural law and that homosexuality violated natural law because it did not lead to children” (Ruse n. p.). This argument accentuates the physical peculiarities of humans that are not adjusted for homosexual relations. This premise is especially relevant when it comes to procreation. From the ancient times, people used to comprehend the obvious shortcomings of same-sex relationship. It goes without saying that in terms of biology, such interaction is defective.
For instance, Plato, in spite of not condemning homosexual relations as such, believed that “humans should not participate in homosexual behavior because animals do not participate in homosexual behavior” (Ruse n. p.). The most important objection to this argument is that humans are not animals; thus, they may have different needs, which engage diverse behaviors. Besides, as it is seen today, both reproduction and growing an offspring is possible in a homosexual marriage. Nevertheless, the inability of the same-gender individuals to procreate without medical assistance displays that, unlike traditional marriage, same-sex marriage is insufficient and ill-suited. To support this idea, one may refer to the Vatican Declaration of Sexual Ethics, which claims, “It is respect for its finality that ensures the moral goodness of this act” (4). Undoubtedly, ‘the finality’ of the same-sex marriage is not the same as that of a heterosexual marriage. Therefore, it is appropriate to deduce that a traditional unit of society is the only correct way to respect the rules of nature.
Furthermore, a significant social role of the traditional marriage is predetermined historically; nowadays, it reflects the established ethical and moral principles of the society. For instance, the Vatican Declaration of Sexual Ethics states:
All evolution of morals and every type of life must be kept within the limits imposed by the immutable principles based upon every human person's constitutive elements and relations-- elements and relations which transcend historical contingency (2).
It means that traditional marriage is a proper way to maintain one’s lifestyle in accordance with moral and ethical principles. Moreover, in these terms, traditional marriage is also the cultural heritage; thus, the relevant cultural attitudes are supposed to be passed from generation to generation.
The strongest objection to this idea is the notion of liberalization that creates new attitudes towards human evolution and advancement. Indeed, the moral and ethical norms can be changed within time to some degree. Besides, the differences can be seen while comparing the ethics of different nations. Nevertheless, the role of the traditional marriage is to inculcate the fundamentals of a proper interpatrimonial interaction. It is essential considering that humans have two genders, which are supposed to successfully coexist and cooperate. Unfortunately, the necessary personal qualities can hardly be formed in the same-sex relations. Therefore, the social role of a traditional heterosexual marriage, which is to be the basement of social structure, social processes, and interpersonal communication, remains significant.
What is more, a traditional marriage is considered to have an immense aesthetic meaning to the community that welcomes heterosexual relations. In contrast with heterosexual relationship, homosexuality is often considered as perversion, which suggests “breaking an aesthetic rule” (Ruse n. p.). Undoubtedly, the claim that heterosexual relations are more aesthetic than homosexual can be argued. Nonetheless, maintaining aesthetic relations is far more important than it is considered to be. The fact is that aesthetic relations help to avoid or reduce the distress by means of bringing joy and happiness to the individuals who are involved in this relationship. The aesthetic aspect of heterosexual relations is seen in maintaining the natural order. In addition, this very aesthetic style of traditional relationship can be viewed in terms of social norms when it comes to the family values.
In general, the moral value of sex is predetermined by its naturalness, completeness, and pleasure (Ruddick n. p.). As it was said above, homosexual relations are unnatural in terms of biology. Moreover, the completeness of such marriage is vastly disputable since it does not support the reproduction. Besides, in the same-sex marriage, there is a great risk that children will be deprived of the proper sexual and social education. The notion of physical pleasure is completely the matter of taste; however, as was deduced, heterosexual relations provide more aesthetic pleasure. Therefore, one can rightfully conclude that heterosexual marriage has a greater value in both individual and social meaning.
To sum up, it is necessary to emphasize the significance and topicality of traditional marriage in the contemporary world. Furthermore, today, the existing alternative, same-sex marriage, is being greatly disputed in numerous states on all social levels. The notion of liberalization and global acceptance of basic human rights and freedoms create favorable conditions for the development of this alternative. Nevertheless, even under these circumstances, most people agree that traditional marriage possesses greater value than same-sex marriage. In particular, heterosexual relations assure the natural flow of biological processes, which makes a positive impact on the intimate life and procreation. Besides, traditional marriage is highly valuable for the society since a man and a woman display the correct role models of the intergeneric communication, which is highly important for their offsprings. Finally, the aesthetic meaning of a traditional marriage enables to avoid distress and digressions. Keeping in mind the above-stated arguments, it is possible to conclude that the Vatican Declaration of Sexual Ethics is a contemporary guide of moral and ethical values. Therefore, it should be referred to by the individuals who appreciate traditional heterosexual marriage.
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