Instigator / Pro

Governments should legally recognize same-sex marriage


The debate is finished. The distribution of the voting points and the winner are presented below.

Winner & statistics
Better arguments
Better sources
Better legibility
Better conduct

After 2 votes and with 6 points ahead, the winner is...

Publication date
Last updated date
Number of rounds
Time for argument
Three days
Max argument characters
Voting period
Two weeks
Point system
Multiple criterions
Voting system
Contender / Con

(1) I'm Pro; my opponent is Con.

(2) Burden of proof is shared.

(3) No new arguments in the final round.

(4) Character limited to 10,000 characters per speech (i.e. Pro gets 10,000 characters in Pro's R1, Con gets 10,000 characters in Con's R1, and so on) -- anything above 10,000 characters should not be considered by judges; if a speech exceeds 10,100 characters, it is an auto-loss for the debater whose speech exceeded that amount. Characters include spaces.

(5) Judges should award a tie on "sources," "conduct," and "spelling and grammar" points.

(6) For judges, DDO standards for "select winner" judging apply and RFDs are required for all votes. The standards are accessible here (

(7) This debate does not take place in any particular country; however, neither debater is required to argue for or against this policy in extreme circumstances. I expect this debate to be a reasonable debate rather than one where the semantics of this topic are exploited (e.g. Con can't make an argument that says "Pro's plan would be harmful in North Korea").

(8) Con's advocacy has to be that opposite-sex marriage is permitted while same-sex marriage is not, while I'll argue that same-sex marriage should be permitted. In other words, both Pro and Con assume that opposite-sex marriage should be permitted; Con has to explain why same-sex marriage, and same-sex marriage alone, should be illegal, while I have to argue for marriage equality.

(9) Pre-fiat kritiks, theory shells, and "tight calls" are not allowed.

Round 1
== Definitions ==

Marriage = “the legally or formally recognized union of two people as partners in a personal relationship” [1]

This definition means that Con can’t run a counterplan of “allow same-sex couples to have legally recognized civil unions,” because, while those unions aren’t explicitly called marriages, they fit the definition. However, I, nonetheless, advocate for complete marriage equality. Note, also, that rule 8 means Con can’t argue for the abolition of marriage in its entirety.

== My case ==

Contention 1: Marriage equality is required by justice

A. Benefits of marriage

The starting point of this argument is that marriage – in particular, marrying the person one loves – is incredibly beneficial for couples. It brings with it significant health benefits, because it allows for the distribution of work and because it allows for emotional support and cohabitation in a way that other relationships often don’t. In addition, it is symbolically important as a sign of emotional interdependence for couples. Married people experience less morbidity and mortality. [2] They’re also more likely to survive heart attacks. [3] Married people report lower levels of depression and stress, and are less likely to commit suicide. [4] [5] Marriage is also accompanied by financial benefits. Married couples are able to pool insurance, resources (e.g. cars and homes), and get access to financial protection, including protection if the couple ends up splitting in the form of alimony. [6]

B. Justice

Denying marriage to same-sex couples, then, is unjust. Three reasons. First, it denies individuals marital choice. The principle at the heart of marriage is the idea that you get to choose who you want to spend your life with, live alongside, and reap the benefits of marriage with. For gay and bisexual individuals, that choice is often someone of the same gender. Indeed, the emotional and physical benefits of marriage are dependent on mutual love and respect – being forced to not marry at all or marry someone you aren’t even remotely attracted to or don’t even want to marry eliminates the above benefits.

Second, it constitutes discrimination based on sexual orientation. Sexual orientation is an immutable characteristic and is not a choice. A report by the American Academy of Pediatrics notes that “the current literature and most scholars in the field state that one’s sexual orientation is not a choice; that is, individuals do not choose to be homosexual or heterosexual.” [7] For one, there’s a significant genetic component to sexual orientation. There’s examples proving this genetic component across species. Andy Coghlan of New Scientist explains, “A gene has been discovered that appears to dictate the sexual preferences of female mice. Delete the gene and the modified mice reject the advances of the males and attempt to mate with other females instead.” [8] The environmental influence on the development of homosexuality and bisexuality isn’t by choice either. A study by Rice et al. suggests that epigenetics are a significant influencing factor of same-sex sexual attraction. [9] Not allowing same-sex marriage is equivalent to not allowing all gay people and many bisexual people to marry, given that romantic and sexual attraction is an important part of marriage. This means that these individuals are discriminated against by law in not being allowed to access the significant benefits of marriage, because of the immutable, unchosen characteristic of their sexual orientation. This contradicts the ethical principle of equality before the law.

Third, not allowing same-sex marriage is discrimination on the basis of gender. There’s no coherent justification for restricting marriage to it being people of different genders. Gender is a completely arbitrary criterion to limit marriage. Just because of the gender of a person, they are prevented from marrying the person they love. That’s sexist. Moreover, inequality on the basis of sexual orientation itself arises from gender discrimination. Alexandra Bronsky and Elizabeth Deutsch of The Atlantic explain, “By refusing to recognize the rights of a man who loves a man or a woman who loves a woman, these laws police the boundaries of masculinity and femininity, rejecting identities that challenge traditional gender roles by being ‘too effeminate’ or ‘too butch.’” [10]

Contention 2: Marriage equality benefits gay and bisexual individuals

A. Health

Marriage equality improves the health outcomes of gay and bisexual people. There are two ways in which this happens. First, it grants them access to the health benefits of marriage, which I already explained in contention 1. The American Psychological Association suggests that “allowing same-sex couples to marry would give them access to the social support that already facilitates and strengthens heterosexual marriages, with all of the psychological and physical health benefits associated with that support.” [11] Bans on same-sex marriage worsen the health of LGB individuals for this reason. Hatzenbuehler et al. found that gay and bisexual people who lived in states without marriage equality in the US were 37% more likely to have mood disorders, over twice as likely to have anxiety disorder, and 42% more likely to be alcoholic. [12] Crucially, absent marriage equality, relationships of same-sex couples are less stable, because married relationships are more stable than unmarried ones. Martin Beckford of The Telegraph explains that, in the UK, “four-fifths of spouses who were married in 1991 were still together a decade later, compared with three-fifths of cohabiting couples.” [13] This means that unmarried same-sex couples are more likely to separate, which results in poor health outcomes – indeed, separation increases the average mortality rate of people by 23%. [14]

Second, marriage equality reduces rates of sexually transmitted diseases. One, marriage creates an incentive to behave monogamously, reducing the chance of STD transmission. Two, bans on same-sex marriage promote stigma against the LGBT community, increasing the likelihood of risky behavior, reducing access to healthcare infrastructure, and reducing awareness and discourse about STDs. Francis et al. confirms that bans on same-sex marriage increase rates of syphilis and infection with HIV. [15] Another study by Francis and Mialon confirms that tolerance toward gay and bisexual people has a negative relationship with rates of HIV. [16]

B. Stigmatization

Bans on same-sex marriage promote stigma and discrimination against LGB individuals in general. They send a symbolic message that discrimination against gay and bisexual individuals is acceptable. As a report by the Equality Network notes, “The introduction of same-sex marriage would help reduce these forms of prejudice against LGBT people because it would eliminate the official ‘otherness’ status of LGBT people. It would also help to reduce prejudice and discrimination more widely.” [17]

This effect has been empirically documented. Raifman et al. find that recognition of same-sex marriage reduces teen suicide among LGBT individuals because it mitigates structural stigma that exists against them in the status quo. [18] Schwartz et al. found that, in Nigeria, “[g]ay men … experienced increased stigma and discrimination in the period immediately after the signing of the Same-Sex Marriage Prohibition Act. Reports of fear of seeking health care, avoidance of health care, absence of safe spaces to socialise with other MSM, blackmail, and verbal harassment remained steady in the months of enrolment and follow-up before the law, then immediately increased in the post-law period.” [19] Rostoosky et al. report similar findings in the United States. [20]

Contention 3: Marriage equality improves the wellbeing of children

A. Adoption

Marriage equality increases rates of adoption, because it (1) reduces the stigma faced by same-sex parents, (2) gives same-sex couples legal benefits when it comes to raising children, and (3) fosters stronger relationships, incentivizing parenthood. Given that same-sex couples typically can’t be biological parents, they often opt to adopt children. This means that legal recognition of same-sex marriage increases adoption rates. [21]

This is useful because there is a systemic problem of children not being adopted. These children are then condemned to foster care and orphanages, which is damaging to their lives. [22]

B. Children of same-sex couples

Children of same-sex couples fare better when marriage equality exists. Children are targeted by anti-LGBT stigmatization when same-sex marriage is illegal. [23] Furthermore, same-sex marriage ensures that these children live under more stable relationships, improving their quality of life. [24] There’s also evidence to suggest that growing up in married households, in general, is better for children. [25]

Vote Pro in today’s debate to stand on the side of justice and on the side of the LGBT community.

[5] Youd Sinh Chao, Intercultural Communication, p. 184

[ Introduction ]
A couple of years ago, Elon University decided that it had enough with the sexual violence that was taking place on college campuses all around and was going to take a fierce stance against it; this University determined that it needed to do what it could to put it stop to sexual violence and sexism against women. So what courageous course of action did the University take? It banned the use of the term freshman on its campus.[1] Freshman is, after all, an inherently sexist term and clearly one that "has often been felt to refer to the vulnerableness of young women in college for the first time."[2]
Elon University isn't alone in its courageous campaign to rid the word of vile and harmful language. Last year the British Medical Association did just that by informing it members "not to call pregnant women ‘expectant mothers’ because it might offend transgender people[3]; by ridding the UK of the inherent evils of the term expectant mothers, they are "celebrating diversity."[4]
Of course, there has been no greater vigilant effort in the battle against vile and harmful language than the efforts divined by edX corporation. EdX is online course corporation that has recently started a program titled "Teaching Social Justice Through Secondary Mathematics."[5] This program is premised on the notion that “For centuries, mathematics has been used as a dehumanizing tool,” and “mathematics formulae also differentiate between the classifications of a war or a genocide and have even been used to trick indigenous people out of land and property.”[6]
I could go on and on and on with such stories, but anyone with access to google can see that the examples I've provided are but the tip of iceberg for what appears to be an increasingly growing movement. A movement summarized in two meager words: Political Correctness. 
Political Correctness is "the avoidance of forms of expression or action that are perceived to exclude, marginalize, or insult groups of people who are socially disadvantaged or discriminated against."[7] And whether or not that be the honest intentions of those who urge political correctness, the examples I've provided and many others would serve to indicate the well known adage that the path to hell is paved with good intentions and that the path of political correctness is frankly not one any healthy society should tread upon.
Now naturally, you might be wondering why in the world I am talking about political correctness in a debate about the legalization of gay marriage? Simple. Because that is precisely what PRO's case is. Political correctness dressed up and disguised in honey-laced terms such as justice and equality.
But as I endeavor to prove today, his case has nothing to do with these concepts, which is best illustrated by his R1 desire to restrict any debate about civil unions.  Little wonder that as most of PRO’s case is broken down into denial of benefits (all of which can be addressed without saying a word about gay marriage).
Make no mistake: Two loving people should not be denied the means to be together. But as I will show today, the government’s interest in marriage has nothing to do with whether two loving people want to be together and never has. Rather, marriage is a different beast entirely and should be left alone both for its historical value as well as to slay the demon that is political correctness. A position that everybody, be they black, white, gay, straight, transgender or otherwise, should stand behind!
[ Definitions ] 
PRO has defined marriage as being “the legally or formally recognized union of two people as partners in a personal relationship.” I reject this definition because it is an effort to avoid the heart of the issue in that PRO is trying to argue in favor of the change of a concept that had persistently been interpreted differently throughout human history and across countless civilizations. And for all those civilizations, marriage was readily understood to be the union between a man and a woman.
Was this understanding a result of hate and bigotry as PRO might have us believe? Was it the result of some discriminatory political movement or some hate mongering religious groups? Of course not. Marriage arose “in the nature of things to meet a vital need: ensuring that children are conceived by a mother and father committed to raising them in the stable conditions of a lifelong relationship.”[8]
Marriage is rooted in procreation. And not just in providing incentives for the continued survival of our species, but also so that deadbeat dads don’t run around sleeping with women left and right and spawning legions of bastard children whose societal involvement (be it through welfare or the criminal justice system[9][10]) will inevitably serve to greater expand the ever expanding government dole. Political Correctness demand that we steer clear of this ugly truth, but that is what the government’s interest in marriage boils down to!
A problem which gays and lesbians couples should not be treated merely like their heterosexual counterparts, but should instead be given benefits each year for not contributing to! I say gays and lesbians should be handsomely awarded benefits for their impeccable decision to live a lifestyle that has zero risk of burdening the rest of society!
[Contention 1: Gay Marriage is Required By Justice]
First, PRO tells us that gay people would be denied health and financials benefits without gay marriage. False. See above. Any argument about benefits can be tossed out the window.
Second, PRO tells us that traditional marriage is discrimination and whatnot. False.  Marriage has a unique function tailored to fixing a problem gays and lesbians don’t cause. Government has no interest whatsoever PRO’s romanticized notions of marriage and gays and lesbians certainly don’t need to make themselves willing participants in the harsh financial slavery that is divorce litigation, alimony and child support[11], much less the math hating insanity that is political correctness. Instead, we as a society should (1) Acknowledge that two people who love each other can be together just fine, (2) One doesn’t need daddy government’s acknowledgment or approval for said love to transpire and (3) Political Correctness must be rejected across the board for the good of society.
[Contention 2: Gay Marriage benefits gay and bisexual individuals]
PRO uses a study to argue that people in traditional marriage states suffer mentally. This study should be dismissed on the grounds of it being faulty logic to make such assessments in regards to heavily politicized issues. Reductio ad Absurdum: PRO’s study was taken at a time when its polling participants would be frustrated with Bush II’s back to back victories, but research conducted during and after Bush II’s second victory indicates that being a Republican is better for your mental health than being a Democrat. [12]).
PRO then provides studies to make the point that marriage encourages stability and that gays would be better off due to some notions of “poor health outcomes” and “mortality.” PRO’s argument fails to take into account the fact that gays are generally more open minded about non-monogamous relationships[13] (with there even being indication that gays are actually happier with the freedom to have different partners) and are thus able to adjust better than their heterosexual counterparts. Further, going by PRO’s logic, one can just as easily argue that the unfair “stigma” against non-monogamous relationships can be attributed to the results provided in his studies and lack of stigmatization would surely improve non-monogamous relationships.[14]
PRO then goes on to say that the bans on gay marriage encourage stigmatization against gays. False. Hysterical notions about people “being denied the right to be together” pushed by people on both sides of the aisle has done that. People who are legitimately homophobic should be opposed without question and efforts to make society more unified should always be encouraged, but the fact of the matter is that gay and straight couples are not the same and that marriage is a tool designed to solve a problem only the latter is capable of causing.
[Contention 3: Gay marriage improves the wellbeing of children]
PRO says gay marriage increases the rate of adoption, but provides no evidence of this. A NY Times article saying “The AP reports adoption agencies and lawyers are planning for an adoption increase once the new law takes effect on July 24” is not evidence of an increase, but is rather a premise that presumes it conclusion is true (begging the question). New York already had a positive upward trend for gay adoptions since 2009, according to PRO’s own article, indicating instead that greater social acceptance of gay people is the cause as opposed to daddy government rubber stamping a new law after the fact.
Lastly, PRO tells us that children with gay parents are more accepted with gay marriage legalized.  He offers some anecdotal evidence (cite 23), inadvertently raises the issue as to why certain benefits should not be accessible to productive child rearing couples regardless of marriage or sexual preference (cite 24) (no child, be their parents straight, gay, unmarried or whatever should have to suffer just because their parents decisions) and makes the deadly mistake of citing a study that discusses the need for children to have positive father and motherly role models in their households (cite 25).

That'll do it for now!

[2] See above.
[4] See above.
[6] See above.
[8] (Roberts Dissent).

Round 2
== Overview ==

Con offers a counterplan. He says “gay and lesbian couples … should be given benefits each year for not contributing to [the problem]” and that “certain benefits should … be accessible to productive child rearing couples regardless of marriage.” Irrespective of Con’s reasoning for giving such a benefit, government benefits for couples/relationships of any kind fall under the definition of marriage I provided in R1. To be sure, I advocate different benefits and for different reasons, so his counterplan is different than my plan; however, it’s a counterplan that doesn’t negate the resolution. The definition of “marriage,” which I provided in R1, was “the legally or formally recognized union of two people as partners in a personal relationship.” Benefits on the basis of relationship status are legal recognition, of some kind. Don’t allow Con to advocate their counterplan, because their counterplan is technically my plan.

Importantly, though, this also means that Con agrees with some kind of system of same-sex marriage. He only disagrees with my specific system and thinks that same-sex marriage has a different purpose than opposite-sex marriage: to serve as a reward. Even if those are two differences between the two worlds, Con already loses, because he concedes that governments should legally recognize same-sex marriage.

== Encouraging responsible procreation ==

Con’s only positive argument in this debate is that the only state interest in marriage is to incentivize responsible procreation and to disincentivize irresponsible procreation. I’ve got three responses to this argument.

First, while encouraging responsible procreation is certainly a part of the existence of marriage, that’s not the only reason marriage exists. There’s many other state interests that are preserved by marriage. Consider the health benefits of marriage – encouraging better physical and emotional health is a state interest. I explained why marriage provides such benefits in my first contention in R1. Similarly, encouraging financial protection and stability is another state interest that marriage protects. In addition, more people getting married is an economic benefit to the state. Thus, marriage equality would be a source of significant economic benefit. Wedding spending would create jobs and increase sales tax revenue. [1] Another major economic benefit is that since people become more financially secure due to marriages, they will no longer be eligible for government-provided welfare and safety nets. It would save the government hundreds of millions in welfare costs. [2]

Second, turn this argument against him. This is a state interest that applies to same-sex couples as well, because: (1) People will have sex and have children without marriage as well. The question is whether those children get good quality parenting and a stable household – marriage’s role is to provide such a household, since children who are raised by married couples are better off than those raised by unmarried ones. Since marriage equality ensures that many adopted children get more stable households, recognizing same-sex marriage fulfills this very state interest. (2) Con says that the state interest in marriage lies in ensuring that “deadbeat dads don’t run around sleeping with women left and right and spawning legions of bastard children whose societal involvement … will inevitably serve to greater expand the ever expanding government dole.” However, there’s also a state interest in preventing “sleeping around” by non-heterosexual people – the connection between that and the spread of sexually transmitted diseases. (3) Same-sex couples can also procreate by surrogacy. If there’s a state interest in “providing incentives for the continued survival of our species,” this applies, to a certain degree, to same-sex couples as well.

Third, this argument doesn’t provide Con any offense, because Con doesn’t prove any harm to recognizing same-sex marriage. Con assumes that the default position is not recognizing marriage, without any warrant. Until Con warrants that, Con doesn’t have any offense at all.

== Justice ==

(1) Con’s response to the health and financial benefits of marriage doesn’t exist. I already explained in my overview that he can’t offer government benefits to same-sex couples, but a lot of these benefits aren’t directly tied to government benefits. I explained in R1 that marriage is symbolic expression of interdependence, that many people are likely to opt out of relationships entirely if there’s no opportunity of marriage, and that marriage creates commitment toward long-term relationships by providing benefits. All of these lead to significant health and financial benefits, which are denied to LGBT people.

(2) Con says marriage is “harsh financial slavery.” The evidence I gave in subpoint A of contention 1 is enough to counter that: marriage allows significant financial benefits. In fact, Con’s own example of divorce is an example that stands on my side, because when an individual breaks up with someone they’re in a relationship with and financially dependent on, the existence of alimony offers financial protection.

(3) Con then says that “[m]arriage has a unique function tailored to fixing a problem gays and lesbians don’t cause.” I’ve proven that this is false, but even if it weren’t, that sentence doesn’t engage with the fact that benefits are being offered to individuals on the basis of an innate characteristic that they don’t choose and the individuals who get these benefits are also privileged in other respects. The state ought not engage in discrimination based on sexual orientation and deny emotional, physical, and economic benefits to gay and bisexual individuals. Since Con doesn’t have any offense in this debate, you can vote Pro right here.

== Protecting the health of LGBT people ==

Con starts off with a misrepresentation of my argument. My argument isn’t that living in a state where same-sex marriage is illegal is bad for people’s emotional health in general. Whether Republican voters are happier people is completely irrelevant to this argument. My argument is that gay and bisexual people gain positive emotional health outcomes when they are able to marry. Extend the cards [11] through [14] from R1, all of which he drops. This point stands. That’s another place you can vote Pro.

Next, Con attempts to mitigate my argument on sexually transmitted diseases by saying that marriage won’t solve for sexually transmitted diseases, since gay people are more willing to have open relationships. This doesn’t engage with the fact that sexual promiscuity is reduced with marriage, proven by the fact that a majority of gay people in long-term relationships are monogamous, and even if they’re not, the number of sexual partners they have reduces. Con then says, on my second warrant of stigma, that stigma against non-monogamous relationships allows for the spread of sexually transmitted diseases. I agree. That isn’t mutually exclusive to stigma against LGBT people being another cause. My sources [15] and [16] stand unaddressed. This is one more independent path to victory for me.

== Stigmatization ==

Con drops my empirical evidence in [18], [19], and [20], and my case studies of Nigeria and the United States, proving that marriage equality reduced stigma against LGBT people. All he says is that stigmatization against LGBT people has resulted from backlash to marriage equality and the LGBT rights movement. That’s nonsense. In fact, support for LGBT rights and marriage equality has been constantly on the increase, correlated with increased awareness created by the LGBT rights movement. [3]

The impact of reduced stigmatization is huge. As I explained before, it means we can more effectively combat diseases such as AIDS and syphilis. It also means reduced suicides by LGBT youth. Indeed, marriage equality legislation has directly caused reduced suicide rates among gay and bisexual people. R1’s source [18] finds that marriage equality legislation in the US caused a 7% reduction in overall suicide, through a 14% reduction in suicide by youth from sexual minority groups, per year. [4] That’s 134,000 children saved every year. Until Con contends with this overwhelming evidence, this remains the largest impact in the debate.

== Children ==

(1) Con drops the three analytical warrants for why marriage equality would increase rates of adoption. Source [22] is the endgame for Con on adoption – it proves that kids of same-sex parents would have often otherwise ended up in foster care. Con’s response to this is that there’s already an “upward trend” of adoptions by same-sex couples. Why? Because of increased social acceptance and because more countries are legalizing same-sex marriage across the world. Both of those are accelerated in my world.

(2) Marriage equality benefits children currently being raised by same-sex couples. Source [25] proved that children fared better when raised by married parents. Con says that source [25] proves the need for a male and female role model – except the study only mentions “role models” once, where it suggests that it is possible that a same-sex role model is needed in a household, but that role models of either sex are good role models. Indeed, the scientific consensus is that same-sex couples are as good or better parents than opposite-sex couples. [5] [6] However, it is true that children fare better when their parents are married. Allowing same-sex marriage, thus, protects children.

At bottom, Con has no offense. His only argument is about the “purpose of marriage,” which is a purely defensive argument. He never points to a disadvantage to recognizing same-sex marriage. I gave you seven independent paths to affirming this resolution. If you buy even one of those, vote Pro.


Folks, PRO doesn’t appear to utter a word about the heart of my case which is rejecting political correctness.  I don’t blame him as the issues I raised are incontestable. Redefining the age-old institution known as marriage in the fashion PRO is advocating is political correctness and purest sense and the examples I’ve provided illustrate to us the kind of insanity political correctness leads to. Insanity which is unhealthy for our society (i.e. insisting that math is “evil” and “oppressive”). This is a huge problem for PRO’s case as he walks around his entire R2 pretending I’ve presented no “offense”, inadvertently conceding the debate.

PRO wants political correctness under the lie of blind conformity. He wants gays to blindly conform to a system that has historically been premised on fixing a problem heterosexuals cause. How insulting. I, on the other hand, am insisting the government incentivize homosexuals to be proud of themselves and be proud of their differences. Being different is nothing to be ashamed about and is something to be embraced!

Sensing his inevitable defeat, PRO spends a lot of time trying to trump up sources I didn’t directly acknowledge, saying that this somehow mandates a PRO vote. Nonsense. PRO’s proclaimed “paths to victory” are a lie. I could’ve gone my entire first round not acknowledging any of his sources and the outcome would still be the same. Any source premised on financial/legislative/health benefits, or discrimination is meaningless to my case. Sources that talks about family stability is also meaningless aside from PRO’s talk about monogamy (which I’ve dealt with thoroughly) and the divorce process (which is harsh financial slavery). Talk of benefits, stability, discrimination, stigmatization, adoption, health and children is irrelevant. His only possible means of winning this debate was to prove why a millennia old definition of marriage ought to be changed without referencing any of the above. He failed and his inability to address the political correctness his case is premised upon speaks volumes.

[Re: Encouraging responsible procreation]

PRO tries to tell us that the government has other interest beyond incentivizing responsible procreation. (1) You can disregard most of what he says since he merely references various benefits again. These are the incentives themselves, not the justifications for issuing out incentives. By PRO’s logic, the government should simply hand everybody in the country health and financial benefits if its simply offering these benefits for the sake of offering them. (2) PRO grasps to the extreme by making the point that “wedding spending” at gay weddings would create jobs, but nobody is saying that gays are getting banned from having weddings, so we can kick this strawman to the curb.  Gays can do whatever they want and however they want it. This debate is about the government redefining an age old institution for the sake of political correctness.

Second, PRO falsely says my arguments can be turned against me. (1) In regards to household stability, PRO has only told us that this is achieved through benefits and the divorce system. The benefits argument is dead and we haven’t been given any good reason for why gays should want to subject themselves to the financial slavery rampant in the divorce system [1][2][3][4]. (2) PRO says that the State has an interest in preventing homosexuals from sleeping around with people left and right, but this disregards the research I provided in R1 which showed that gays are a lot more open to open relationships regardless of monogamy. Instead, as PRO concedes, the problem is stigmatization towards non-monogamy, which my plan solves by encouraging gays to be themselves (aforementioned open-mindedness being one vehicle through which this is accomplished). (3) PRO tells us that same-sex couples can procreate by surrogacy, but mere surrogacy alone is not the problem. Rather, being the responsible people that they are, gays rely upon surrogacy when they want to have a child and engage in engage in non-childbearing behavior when they want to have a good time!

Third, PRO says my argument doesn’t provide me any offense, but this is false and PRO has conceded the debate! Vote CON!

[Re: Justice]

(1) PRO’s points regarding benefits have been crushed. I say gays should get benefits because gays are a boon to society. Under my plan, we not only have a framework that gives gays the benefits PRO keeps going on and on about, but now gays are encouraged to be themselves now more than ever. How this would result in people being “likely to opt out of relationships entirely” and not being able to engage in a “symbolic expression of interdependence” is a mystery.
(2) PRO tries to dance around the fact of alimony being a harsh financial slavery by simply declaring that “marriage allows significant financial benefits.” There’s nothing significantly beneficial about you having to pay someone $1500/month for the rest of their life because some guy in black robes didn’t like the fact that you arrived to court five minutes late, much less being thrown in jail for six months because said judge decides to hold you in contempt of court when you miss payment! In my society where gay people are encouraged to be themselves, the last thing I want is to subject them to the kind of insanity PRO appears to be trumpeting!
(3) Realizing that his benefits argument is dead, PRO tries to accuse me of promoting  “discrimination based on sexual orientation”, but this is absurd for two reasons: (1) PRO’s relying on a US legal standard that is overcome when the government has a “compelling interest narrowly tailored by the law to achieve that interest.”[5] There’s no interest more compelling and narrowly tailored than incentivizing gays to be true to themselves and thus limit overpopulation[6],  decrease the ever expanding government dole by limiting the number of newly bastard children predating the streets and simultaneously greatly reducing the crime rate. (2) Strawman fallacy since I’m promoting benefits in exchange for behavior (being true to oneself) as opposed to characteristics. Gays could just as easily exchange in nonsense like “gay conversion therapy” or “stay in the closet” and live a lie by pretending to be heterosexual and consequently be denied benefits.
[Re: Protecting the health of LGBT people]

PRO says I misrepresented his argument. False. I examined his source for PRO Cite 12. Look at the timestamps for when the data was conducted in the non-gay-marriage states as well as the states they were conducted in. I refuted his data with simple logic. If PRO believes being a Republican makes one happier than being a Democrat, that’s great, but we all know better. As to Cite 11, 13 and 14, see my general explanation for why his sources collectively don’t matter.

PRO concedes that gays are very welcoming towards open relationships, but says that this doesn’t alter his position that marriage would decrease STDs. PRO is contradicting himself; these two positions are incompatible. If someone is fine with getting into open relationships regardless of marriage, marriage is not going to prevent them from risking STDs. PRO provides no data to show the majority of gays favor monogamy and his point that “there is still some reduction regardless” is weak since “exceptions to the rule” arguments can be made on just about any issue. Furthermore, if PRO agrees that the stigma against non-monogamous relationships furthers the spread of STDs, this is yet another justification to vote CON as I offer the best means of getting rid of this stigma. This concession further renders his R1 cites 15-16 irrelevant.
[Re: Stigmatization]

See my previous explanation on why PRO’s clamoring about the weight of his sources is meaningless. My plan fixes stigmatization by directly incentivizing and encouraging gays to be themselves while simultaneously killing political correctness (which PRO has conceded).
[Re: Children]

(1) PRO is yet again employing circular logic. Notice how his initial claim was that gay marriage increases the rate of adoptions. Using his own source, I proved that adoptions rates were increasing without gay marriage being a factor. So his response is basically “well, uh , other countries are legalizing same-sex marriage across the world, so that must be the reason!” Not only does this dispute his sources which conclude that there are state-by-state/country-by-country effects on not having gay marriage legislation, but he is literally making a claim that presumes his conclusion is true. Gays are adopting more children because of greater social acceptance regardless of legislation. This is symbolic of why PRO’s whole case fails. We don’t need daddy government to brandish the sword of political correctness and change the definition of marriage.

(2) PRO is now trying to backpedal from the hateful and intolerant research he cited in R1, but it’s too late. His study is NOT gender neutral and spends a lot of time discussing the impact fathers and mothers have on children in the household and how the lack of one or the other has resulted in disadvantaging vast number of boys and girls in such environments. A disgusting and disgraceful argument to be sure, but in many ways a microcosm of how political correctness operates. Deception with the use of honey laced terms like equality on the surface, but bait and switch tactics underneath. PRO is trying to get gays to blindly conform to what has historically been a heterosexual institution while subtly advocating trash like what we see in Cite 25!
All I ask is that gays stand strong , gays be proud of themselves and that gays reject the lies and deceit of political correctness that PRO’s case is premised upon!

Round 3
== Housekeeping ==

Con drops my overview in the previous round, which established that Con can’t run his counterplan. Let me quote from the previous speech: “The definition of ‘marriage,’ which I provided in R1, was ‘the legally or formally recognized union of two people as partners in a personal relationship.’ Benefits on the basis of relationship status are legal recognition, of some kind. Don’t allow Con to advocate their counterplan, because their counterplan is technically my plan.” Notice that this forms an independent reason to affirm: Con’s advocacy itself affirms the resolution, because it is technically a form of same-sex marriage.

== Roadmap ==

I’m going to re-organize the round by looking at the three questions it came down to. Crystallization and rebuttal will be interwoven as I answer each of these three questions. (1) What is the purpose of marriage? (2) Who better upholds the interests of LGBT people? (3) Would legally recognizing same-sex marriages benefit society as a whole?

== What is the purpose of marriage? ==

A. Procreation

Con says that the purpose of marriage is procreation and that the state ought not extend marriage unless it meets that purpose. At best, Con proves this is a purpose of marriage. He never conclusively demonstrates that this is the exclusive purpose of marriage, to the point where we should never extend marriage to individuals for any other reason. Importantly, he also fails to explain how recognizing same-sex marriage undermines this purpose, even if it doesn’t strictly fit within this purpose, or why the default position is not legally recognizing marriage. That’s why I pointed out that this point, even if it works, doesn’t provide any offense for Con. Con disagrees with it without explaining why his disagreement is true.

But I had two central objections to this as an argument against same-sex marriage. First, I argued that there are other reasons why marriage matters – that, for instance, it brings with it tremendous economic and emotional benefits. Con’s response to this is “these are the incentives themselves, not the justifications for issuing out incentives.” Here’s the thing: the benefits of the government recognizing marriage don’t just come from the government offering financial benefits. I told you that it was a symbolic benefit that came with marriage – the fact that marriage is an incentive for people to come into stable relationships where they’re happy and the fact that marriage leads to relationships that are happier and more financially secure. Note that it was Con’s burden to prove that marriage was a specific incentive against irresponsible procreation – he failed to meet that burden. I also suggested that the government benefits economically as a result of this. Con points out that he isn’t banning weddings between same-sex couples: no, but all the evidence I suggested proved that marriage is an incentive to have a wedding. It’s serving the function of an incentive to boost the economy. An incentive to go into a stable relationship. All of these are additional incentives that Con never explains why we should discount.

Second, I argued that legalizing same-sex marriage meets Con’s own standard. I explained that “sleeping around” causes increased rates of sexually transmitted diseases. Con’s response to this is that gay people are more welcoming to open relationships, which doesn’t deal with my response in the previous speech: “This doesn’t engage with the fact that sexual promiscuity is reduced with marriage, proven by the fact that a majority of gay people in long-term relationships are monogamous, and even if they’re not, the number of sexual partners they have reduces.” Con ignores this response which takes down this piece of mitigation. Moreover, I proved that same-sex couples procreate by surrogacy, which deals with the state interest that Con himself describes in promoting marriage to promote the “continued survival of the species.”

Ultimately, Con fails to prove that the specific incentive he wants to talk about is the only reason marriage exists. Marriage being accompanied by benefits to emotional health and financial stability is good in itself.

B. Justice

(1) Cross-apply the material under “housekeeping.” This is a double bind for Con: either these benefits continue to exist in his world, in which case he’s advocating for same-sex marriage and you vote Pro, or he can’t have a counterplan at all, in which case this is unjust discrimination.

(2) Con says that “alimony is financial slavery.” First, this doesn’t outweigh the benefits of marriage I pointed to. Consider [2], [3], [4], and [5] from R1, which proved that marriage has significant financial benefits. Second, same-sex couples can make the choice to marry, meaning they can make this tradeoff. Third, Con’s claim is false: I explained previously, and Con drops, that alimony is beneficial for dependents. Con makes the case against alimony from the perspective of a broken system. I argue that we should reform the system rather than do away with same-sex couples gaining access to the benefits of alimony.

(3) Finally, Con says my argument on justice is based on a US legal standard. Nope. It’s literally based on the ethical principle of justice: that discrimination based on an innate characteristic is unjust. Since Con has dropped the three layers of ethical principle I gave you in the first speech and hasn’t explained why recognizing same-sex marriage harms the purpose of marriage as procreation, vote Pro.

== Who better upholds the interests of LGBT people? ==

(1) Starting with a reiteration: my argument on emotional health is that there is a direct causal link between recognizing same-sex marriage and the emotional health of LGBT people. It’s not a link surrounding the emotional health of anyone living in a state with a same-sex marriage ban – it is, specifically, a link between bans on same-sex marriage and LGBT people not being emotionally healthy. Extend the cards [11] through [14] again. He drops all my evidence.

(2) On sexually transmitted diseases, I already responded to Con’s claim that gay and bisexual people are going to be in open relationships anyway. Cross-apply my quote from question 1, on the second central objection to Con’s point on procreation – same-sex marriage reduces rates of HIV/AIDS by reducing promiscuity. Moreover, it also reduces stigmatization and improves access to health services; Con drops this.

(3) Con drops the whole point on stigmatization. This is the game over for Con: it’s the largest impact in the round. It means reduced suicide rates, reduced HIV/AIDS, reduced bullying, and increased acceptance of the LGBT people. This is the largest offense I gave you in R1 and Con drops all my responses and the examples of Nigeria and the US.

== Would legally recognizing same-sex marriages benefit society as a whole? ==

A. Political correctness

Con’s claim here is a non-argument about political correctness. (a) This is a non-link argument. Con never explains why legalizing same-sex marriage automatically means you can’t oppose the negative aspects of political correctness. He fails his BOP to show you why the slippery slope happens. (b) Moreover, he doesn’t explain why taking action to reduce discrimination is a bad thing. I’ve explained, throughout my case, that it’s got clear utilitarian benefits. This embedded clash takes down Con’s weak argument. (c) Even if the effect existed, the marginal influence that same-sex marriage has on political correctness is so small that my offense on the massive benefits this has in terms of reduced suicide, disease prevention, and economic benefits outweighs. This impact isn’t quantified either. (d) Before Con says these are new arguments in the final round, three responses: (i) Lots of this clash was embedded, in the form of the explanation for why reducing discrimination is a good. (ii) Con never made this as a fully explained argument. For judging to truly be tabula rasa, judges shouldn’t evaluate under-explained/underwarranted arguments. (iii) Even if this argument was conceded, it loses on the impact calculus because there’s very little, unquantified magnitude and under-warranted probability.

B. Children

(1) Con, again, completely drops the three analytical warrants in R1 I gave you for why legalizing same-sex marriage increases adoption rates. He doesn’t explain why empirical evidence is even required to win this point. The analytical justification does this for me. Don’t allow Con to respond to these warrants in R4, where I don’t have a chance to respond.

(2) Ctrl+F source [25] for “role model”: it hits one result, as a possible explanation for why married parents are so important. That doesn’t deal with the majority of source [25] that proves that being raised by unmarried parents is worse for children. This is empirically confirmed in the literature as well. For instance, Wilcox et al. find that “[h]igher levels of marriage, and especially higher levels of married-parent families, are strongly associated with more economic growth, more economic mobility, less child poverty, and higher median family income at the state level in the United States.” [1]

== Underview ==

Vote Pro because (1) Con’s counterplan is technically a form of same-sex marriage, (2) Con drops the point on stigmatization which is the game-over impact in terms of the effects on the LGBT community, (3) Con drops the three warrants I gave you for why adoption rates increase when same-sex marriage is legal, and (4) my impacts of reduced suicides, reduced rates of disease, increased rates of adoption, and massive economic benefits (which Con drops) outweigh even the best version of Con’s arguments.

This debate can be summed down to one question: “Who offers the best pathway for society?”
On the one hand, we have PRO’s pathway. A pathway that pretends to be acting on behalf of gay people but is in reality an effort to make them shoulder responsibility for a problem heterosexuals cause and shackle gays to the chains of financial slavery that PRO has been reduced to advocating the need to reform. PRO’s does this for the sake of the vile demon that is political correctness (hereinafter P.C.).
On the other hand, we have my pathway. A pathway that rewards gays for being the bastions of our society, a pathway that tells gays that they don’t need to blindly conform to a heterosexual institution, a pathway that tells gays to be proud of themselves and a pathway that allows gays and the rest of society to stand triumphant as they slay P.C. once and for all! PRO falsely says these pathways are the same.
By claiming that ‘his case = my case’, he concedes that my case fixes all of the problems he has raised throughout this debate. Even going by PRO’s own logic, a CON vote is mandatory since my plan not only fixes everything in his plan, but destroys P.C., encourages open-mindedness on open relationships and opposes the slavery that is the divorce process -- making my plan objectively better.
=Re: Housekeeping=
PRO says I dropped the overview from his R2, but this notion that “my plan is his plan” has no basis in fact.
=Re: What is the purpose of marriage?=
A. Procreation
Marriage is a tool to fix a problem that heterosexuals cause. Marriage is leash and the financial slavery PRO keeps harping on and on about is ample indication of this. THAT is government’s  interest in it; to keep heterosexuals from running around left and right and spawning legions of bastard children on society. PRO’s tactic on this point was to try and show that the government had an independent interest in redefining the definition of marriage, but his examples were unpersuasive.
He talked about various economic benefits, but as I showed last round, the government does not hand out benefits for the sake of benefits; there must be an actual policy justification.
He talked about symbolic/emotional benefits, but as I pointed out in R1, government has no interest in PRO’s romanticized notions of marriage. Look no further than the horror stories in my alimony cite to see how much the government prioritizes vague notions of “emotional benefits.” We don’t pay taxes to subsidize people’s “emotional benefits.”
He tried to say that the government had an interest in decreasing the rates of STDs , but as shown in R1/R2, gays are very open-minded when it comes to open relationships and PRO conceded that the STDs were a result of the stigma against open relationships (thereby conceding my plan’s superiority). In R3, he tries to requote what he said in R2, but my response in R2 is more than sufficient.
He says I failed to prove “that marriage was a specific incentive against irresponsible procreation”, but look back to my R1 cite 8 and the sources cited within to see why this is false. Sources PRO did not contest.
He talked about the economic benefits of weddings, but this was a strawman on his part. In his R3, he tries to equivocate this argument by saying that government redefining the definition of marriage is an incentive to have a wedding in the first place, but PRO is dodging the issue. I’m not saying gays are banned from having weddings,  so why is the government redefining marriage a prerequisite for anything PRO is talking about? The only possible answer PRO could offer is something about stigmatization, but we’ve beaten that horse to death extensively and PRO concedes that my plan fixes this problem.
Lastly, disregard PRO’s talk about “harm” as I’ve addressed it ad nauseum (slavery, blind conformity, P.C, etc).
(1) Refer to what I said on “housekeeping.”
(2) First, “my plan = your plan” kills the benefits argument by his own admission. Second, my plan keeps gays from harsh financial slavery while simultaneously giving them benefits. Third, PRO has not once explained to us why the benefits he talks about (i.e. court arbitrarily granting one party alimony and making the other party a permanent indentured servant) are worth the evils of this system. They’re not worth it and gays shouldn’t be made to clean up heterosexual messes just so they can be thanked with slavery. PRO says the system can be reformed, but offers no explanation how And that’s because none exist. Gays should REJECT their own enslavement!
(3) PRO’s says his argument isn’t based on a US legal standard, but it doesn’t matter as we make laws premised on innate characteristics all the time, which is why years of case law has cultivated in the standard I cited in R2. By PRO’s logic, laws permitting college enrollment to encourage racial diversity in their applications (thus combating stigmatization) is “evil” since race is an innate characteristic. PRO doesn’t utter a word about the compelling interest rationale I offer, so consider it a concession on his part.
=Re: Who better upholds the interests of LGBT people? =
(1) PRO repeats himself rather than address my counter-argument to his R1 source’s bad logic, so consider his mental health point refuted by his own tacit admission. Sources 11, 13, 14 can additionally be dismissed due to PRO’s “my plan = your plan” logic.
(2) Again, look back to PRO’s devastating R2 concession that the stigma for open relationships is the source of the STD problem in the first place when he says “stigma against non-monogamous relationships allows for the spread of [STDs]. I agree.” Again ,my plan erases the stigma and thus resolves the problem!
(3) Again, PRO’s points on stigmatization are dead and he knows this! Any plan that heralds gays as the bastions of society destroys stigmatization completely!
= Re: Would legally recognizing same-sex marriages benefit society as a whole? =
A.Political Correctness
PRO tries to undermine his concession to my case when he says that (A) legalizing same-sex marriage doesn’t automatically mean you can’t oppose negative aspects of P.C., (B) I haven’t shown why “taking action to reduce discrimination is bad” and  (C) the effects of P.C. are minimal, but these are all new arguments and he waived the issue in R2. I’ll address these points for fun, but PRO concedes.  
(A) Strawman. One can support gay marriage and reject certain areas of P.C., but my case is that P.C. is fundamentally bad and that it ALL should be rejected. Math is neither oppressive nor evil and traditional marriage is not an evil institution that stigmatizes gays but is instead an institution designed to fix a heterosexual problem.
(B) False. I’m sure those who are behind the R1 examples I cited believed they were “reducing discrimination”, but the path to hell is paved with good intentions.
(C) False. The empirically cancerous effects of P.C. are well documented [1][2][3]. The three examples I provided in R1 illustrated the problem, which is a tendency to prohibit free-thought for the sake of falsehoods or absurdities.
PRO additionally tells us that his new arguments should be accepted, but there was no “clash” about anything I said throughout my R1 Introduction, hence PRO saying I had no “offense” in his R2. PRO concedes.

PRO tells us I never made this a fully explained argument. False. I spent a chunk of my first round talking about it in clear terms PRO had every opportunity to address. From a DART policy standpoint, dropping half of a debater’s case and only mentioning it in the final round should be discouraged with the utmost prejudice.

He lastly tells us that even if you think he conceded, there’s “very little, unquantified magnitude and under-warranted probability”, but any society that subscribes to the philosophy illustrated in my three R1 examples is not a healthy society to live in. P.C. is an empirically documented evil that must be crushed!
(1) In R1, PRO provided a cite arguing that gay marriage increases adoption rates. In R1 and R2, I demonstrated how the cite PROVED THE OPPOSITE, instead positing the argument that social acceptance increases the rate of adoption. His evidence proved my point and PRO has no response; he merely reiterates what he said in R1. PRO concedes.
(2) Clrl + F “father” or “mother.” Again, the study is premised on the parents being “mothers” and “fathers” and the individual effects they have on the family unit. That PRO continues to push this garbage undermines his case, is a microcosm of the P.C. he is advocating and illustrative of why gays need to turn away from the Faustian bargain he is proposing! Moreover, PRO has continually claimed ‘my case = his case’ and has thus conceded that gay families would not be deprived of the economic benefits he keeps talking about merely because the government won’t redefine the word marriage!
Over the years, the gay community has made great strides in having their thoughts heard and overcoming injustice. However, as the adage goes, with success brings enemies. And there is no greater enemy than the enemy that lies within! In this case, the saboteur! And for the gay community, that saboteur is political correctness. A saboteur that seeks to mislead the LGBT movement with sweet lies like what we’ve seen expressed from PRO’s case. Lies which have been exposed as an effort to make you blindly conform to a system that will not hesitate to enslave those who partake in it! Lies which have been exposed to discourage your open-mindedness and your sense of adventure. And lies which seek to undermine just how instrumental you are to society!
There is nothing wrong with being different! Be the bastions to our society! Be the inspiration for open-mindedness! And be the slayer of the demon that is political correctness! BE WHO YOU ARE AND YOU GO FAR! VOTE CON!!!