Sunday, April 26, 2009

Perez Hilton (and a rant on rights)

It's kind of a "lighter side of things" post, but a serious one nonetheless. And I don't know the entire situation, so forgive me if I'm wrong on part of the backstory (it is the opinion that matters more within this post).

Perez Hilton was a guest judge or panelist at the Miss USA competition last week. He asked a question of Miss California regarding gay marriage, and she answered that she felt the institution of marriage should be kept between a man and a woman.

Due to her answer, Hilton and another judge gave California a lower grade.

Was it fair? You may be surprised by my answer: no, it wasn't. Miss California, though I may disagree with her opinions, is entitled to believe whatever she wants on the issue. Whether she believes marriage is between a man or woman is not important; this wasn't an election, it was a beauty pageant.

Frankly, the issue of gay marriage is not one that should be democratic anyway. It is a rights issue: do homosexuals have the right to marry each other the way heterosexuals do? It's not a popular right, but then again many rights aren't popular in the eyes of the American public.

My right to free speech certainly upsets many people; the right to bear guns upsets many on the left; the right to habeas corpus upset those who want to fight as hard as they can in the war on terror. A person has the right to be in a monogamous or polygamous relationship.

Our rights end, however, when they infringe upon another person's (or persons') rights. I can't yell FIRE in a movie theater and claim free speech -- it endangers everyone rushing towards the exits. I can't have a gun if I've had a particularly violent past -- who's to say I've reformed?

The right to gay marriage, however, causes no harm to anyone, even if you have strong religious views. The simple solution, should gay marriage become legal, is that your church doesn't have to perform them.

I deviate from my point: Miss California was not given her due at the pageant. She has a right to believe that gay marriages are immoral, just as gay and lesbian couples have a right to wed.

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