Need access to the book Social Problems by Leon-Gurrero, 2015 to meet the instructions requirement #2 & 4Essay#3 is the current paper, the first two are attached for referencing the rubric to for new content. MUST strictly meet the rubric grading requirements, most of it is done. Specifically need a couple more sociological concepts applied to the issue. The Abstract needs to be one paragraph summarizing the entire paper, 250 more or less. The Grading Rubric is attached. The instructions are as follows:Overview:This final paper will be the culmination of what we have accomplished in our first and second writing assignments. Now that we have identified and clarified the nature of our chosen social problem, and examined two key organizations that address this social problem, we will now give a more in depth discussion about the scope of the social problem, a major theoretical idea that can be applied to the social problem, and our own analysis of how this social problem might be better solved. A crucial part of this paper will be in identifying one of the major theoretical perspectives we have covered this session. The three major ones include the functionalist, conflict, and symbolic interaction approaches. However, as our texts point out, there are other theoretical viewpoints we may also adopt if we choose. The key will be in thoroughly reading and understanding these theoretical viewpoints, and finding the most effective one for understanding our chosen social problem of study.Instructions:Complete a 5-7 page final paper that analyzes the future impact of this social problem you have mentioned in the second writing assignment. In this assignment, you will cover:1.The scope of this social problem over the last 30-50 years. (note: you will need to use historical data to articulate the scope of this problem.)2.An analysis of one major theoretical perspective from our textbook that is useful in understanding this social problem.3.Finally, your own analysis of how you think addressing the social problem could be improved. In this analysis, please mention what you think should be done to solve this social problem. Your paper should utilize sound critical thought and it should provide appropriate APA in-text citations and APA full-reference citations.4.Use at least four concepts from our text (not used in our previous assignments) in your analysis.Don’t forget to include proper APA-style citation and reference.The assignment should include a title page, abstract and/or table of contents, body of paper, and also works cited page. This assignment should follow the APA format. In addition to our text, you will significantly incorporate research from at least 5 meaningful up-to-date resources, two of which must be from reputable, peer-reviewed academic journals. Please check the Course Materials for more information on this homework assignment.Running head: THE FUTURE IMPACT OF SAME-SEX MARRIAGES
The Future Impact of Same-Sex Marriages
Student’s Name
Professor’s Name
Course Title
Law suits seeking the legalization of same sex marriages in the United States have been
occurring since the early 1970s. This later brought about the question as to whether these
issues were to be incorporated in the civil marriage rights and whether there are any benefits
that same sex marriages would give the society (Eskridge Jr, 1993). This subject has since then
been the subject of discussion in many political gatherings and most specifically after the Hawaii
Supreme Court suggested that it might have been unconstitutional to prohibit same sex
marriages in Baehr v. Lewin case. This essay delves into the future impact of same sex
marriages in the future from a sociological perspective. The three major perspectives are the
functionalist perspective which views society as a system of interrelated structures which have
specific functions that work together to the betterment of society. The functionalist approach
ensures that the social institutions in society work together so that society reproduces itself
successfully. This means that all the functions in the society must work correctly. If one of them
is not working as expected, in that there are behaviors that are perceived as not good to the
balance of the society, other members of the society have to find a way of eliminating it
(Eskridge Jr, 1993).
Another perspective that may be used to analyze the impact of same sex marriages is
the conflict theory that was developed by Karl Marx and Fredrick Engels. This theory tries to
explain societal relations as a history that bases itself on class struggles. These struggles
involve power, in which groups that have irreconcilable interests struggle for the available
scarce resources. The conflict theory argues that the idea of marriage whether same sex or
opposite sex interests particular groups or classes of individuals in the society (Eskridge Jr,
1993). Therefore, according to Karl Marx, marriage results from human relationships that
develop due to the already existing economic structures.
Therefore, it can be concluded that the function that marriage had in the early 20 th
century was to ensure that the economic stability of the woman was secured in that the woman
acted as a man’s counterpart in providing domestic services as the man went out to work and
earn a living. By doing so the man, with the help of the woman was able to raise a family that is
to inherit his wealth once he is dead and no more. The issue of same sex marriages clearly
goes against these theories as this kind of marriage cannot sustain the society wholly as the
traditional marriage that was from the beginning can do (Eskridge Jr, 1993). The social
implications of same-sex marriages on society are discussed below basing on the functionalist
theory of society.
The Future Impact of Same-Sex Marriages
In the United States of America, gay marriages are legal in all the States with
exemptions of few States. The ruling in Baehr v. Lewin led to several Federal government
actions with an addition of several states restricting marriages to only the straights (male and
females) particularly the Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA). It is only in 2003 to 2005 that there
were decisions made by the lower courts, States legislation, and famous referendums on the
legalization of same-sex marriages with an extension to other thirty eight out of fifty States. In
2013, there was an overturn of the DOMAs key provisioning that declared that a part of the
constitution was not followed and had breached the Fifth Amendment by refusal to treat all
marriages equally.
The portrait of the family circa has since changed where it earlier comprised the father,
Mother and children until recently when most American singles with children are also considered
raising a family. This has had a significant effect on the children who now do not see the need of
straight marriages and therefore the gradual introduction of same sex marriages that has
spurred a lot of controversy but ultimately it has been recognized by law in the United States.
It may sound weird at first to mention that a family without children may be considered a
full family. In a research by GLBTQ Legal Advocates & Defenders, an organization for the samesex couple reported that four out of ten comments that lesbians or gay couples living together
without any kids is a complete family while another large proportion disagreed. In addition to the
above report, the public also had tilts with negative remarks when asked whether a man and a
woman can be termed as a family (Leon-Guerrero, 2015). 43\% agreed while 54\% disagreed
saying that they are not a family.
Social implications of same-sex marriages
One has to consider the recent rash hailing from teens committing suicide courtesy of
anti-gay bullying that covers the magnitude of public health issues faced by the country and the
LGBT minority. Despite the prevalence of same-sex households and campaigning to protect the
gay on their human rights, the legislative bodies have never ceased discussing on the issues
affecting these persons. The couples are ridiculed by society that demeans them, using
derogatory terms mostly being slang or at times extending to insensitive jokes. Individuals who
are ignorant of the political literature of the gay people are always questioning their value as
human beings (Leon-Guerrero, 2015).
The LGBT community also finds themselves subject to amendments in the constitution
that did not earlier have them included thus terming their marriage as illegal. An Act against
these fellows can be traced from the 1996 Defense of Marriage Act that had marriage defined
as the union that existed between woman and man hence insinuating a same sex marriage is
not recognized by the constitution as a marriage. In addition to being subjected to overt
discrimination, the LGBT individuals are subjected to inadvertent, insensitive attacks and even
subtle humiliation on their very natures core even with the very people claiming to champion for
their rights.
On a medical perspective, the gay accrue subtle prejudice and discrimination that leads
to the creation of chronic and daily stresses limiting their optimal development as human beings.
LGBT couples are stigmatized by negative attitudes from the society and therefore they struggle
daily to balance the dual harm of engaging publicly for validation and equality. They are on the
run daily in order to secure a place to calm down by escaping the public scrutiny. As human,
beings, gay couples also internalize prejudices and discrimination laid upon them by the other
members of the society in which they exist.
In a report carried by Hatzenbuehler in 2004 on the gay couples, participants had
reported high rates of disorders on their psychological operations with mood disorders all
brought forth by discrimination from the society. There is knowledge in existence that legally
married individuals, regardless of the economic status, hold fewer tendencies of mental and
physical disorders in comparison to the single ones (Leon-Guerrero, 2015). That stance applies
only to the straight couples but not to the gay people who on daily routine face social difficulties
interacting with the non-gay individuals.
An indispensable impact of same-sex marriages is a failure in the family structure where
the headship of the family can be practiced by either sex as opposed to the original structure
where the man is the head of the family and he rules over the woman and the kids. Child
bearing to make the family complete will be a non-issue because same sex couples are not in a
position to bear children unless they explore the adoption option. The result of not siring children
will be felt by low population since most couples will not be conceiving. The religious stance will
change from that of multiplying the universe with the population to a nil one since there will be
so many instances where human beings will be against the laid down scriptures from the Holy
Books. The resultant will be a free society as there will be no more culture conservancy.
The issue of same-sex marriage is gradually changing the societal meaning of the roles
of the different genders in the society. This new culture has had an impact on the patterns of
behavior among several individuals as one cannot easily tell whether one is straight or not.
Functionalist views on same-sex marriages
As mentioned earlier in this discussion, functionalism is a belief on the society members
forming relationships with each other through coming up with rules and regulations that govern
these relationships. Society is perceived as a human body with various body parts and organs
coordinate to bringing forth a logical function. The above institutions are the same as those that
influence the members of society to behave in a particular manner. The functionalist theory
states that an ideal family is one with a nuclear unit meaning having a heterosexual relationship
rooted in love plus commitment with the bearing of children to ensure a continuum of the
generation (Herek, 2006).
In the current society, there has been an introduction of same-sex marriages which are
becoming common. As much as we may look down upon them, this group of people also
contributes to the societal development just as their fellow heterosexual couples according to
the functionalist view. The main query here is the resonating logic behind accruing difficulty in
the co-existence between the two groups (same-sex and straight couples). The reason is mere
disapproval by the society that only conforms to its tradition rules of marriage which spelled a
man and woman of distinct sexes who settle together and bring forth a family after child bearing.
According to this approach, the family is a nuclear unit that ought to have different sexes, a fact
that completely disagrees with same sex marriages. Same-sex couples have no recognition by
the society. There only recognition is the law which came into consideration after a law
supporting them was enforced in the United States (Herek, 2006).
Nevertheless, same sex marriage awareness is growing significantly despite the fact that
they still have to fight for their place in society because they are currently facing a lot of criticism
and ignorance from society. In a recent report tabled by a population Bureau in the U.S, 50\% of
the young Americans think that gay couples should not have same rights as anyone.
Addressing the same-sex issue
There ought to be recommendations concerning gay marriages because it is a
contemporary issue in society. Some of the solutions to dealing with the issue of same-sex
marriage in the society include: Enlightening the community at large through holding education
seminars and conferences catered for by the psychologists and psychiatrist plus other experts
on issues to do sociology; Passing bills on same-sex marriages thus preventing issues to do
with discrimination of gay couples and Uniting the gay couples in a union that champions their
rights among other remedies.
Many advances have been made in regard to LGBT equality, but with many of the
aforementioned perspectives being prevalent in society, there is still more work to be done.
There are no explicit protections prohibiting the denial of credit (including housing loans) based
on sexual orientation or gender identity, no consistent federal protections for students based on
sexual orientation or gender identity, and no federal protections that prohibit discrimination
against LGBT people in public spaces, such as hotels or restaurants (Leon-Guerrero, 2015).
With more same sex couples getting married across the country, they are quickly becoming a
part of everyday life. TV shows like Modern Family further normalize same-sex families for the
average American. The more the LGBT community exposes and integrates itself into society,
the more normal and comfortable it will be for everyone, thus acceptance will start to eradicate
Eskridge Jr, W. N. (1993). A history of same-sex marriage. Virginia Law Review, 1419-1513.
Fingerhut A, M. N. (2012). Relationship formalization and individual and relationship well-being
among same-sex couples. Journal of Medicine, 27(7):956–969.
Frisch M, B.-H. H. (2013). Mortality among men and women in same-sex marriage: a national
cohort study of 8333 Danes. Journal of Health, 99(1):133–137.
GJ., G. (2006). Same-sex couples and the gay, lesbian, bisexual population: new estimates
Hatzenbuehler ML, M. K. (2010). The impact of institutional discrimination on psychiatric
disorders in lesbian, gay, and bisexual populations: a prospective study. Am J Public
Health, 100(3):452–459.
Herek, G. M. (2006). Legal recognition of same-sex relationships in the United States: a social
science perspective. American Psychologist, 61(6), 607.
Leon-Guerrero, A. (2015). Social Problems:Community,policy,and Social Action (5th Edition
ed.). SAGE Publications. VitalBook.
Assignment 3
100 \%
4 pts
Description of social problems
20 \% Uses historical data to describe social problems
Provided detailed description
of the chosen social problem
through the use of historical
Identify concepts
20 \% Identifies four sociological concepts
Clearly identified 4 relevant
sociological concepts from the
Define concepts
20 \% Defines four sociological concepts
Clearly defined 4 relevant
sociological concepts using the
text and/or other source(s)
Analysis of sociological theory
20 \% Analyzes how sociological theory relates to social problems
Clearly applied a relevant
sociological theory to analysis
of the chosen social problem
12 \% Correctly uses APA formatting
Used correct APA format for
in-text citations and full
references for all paraphrased
and quoted work from other
Writing Expectations
8 \% Follows writing expectations and submission is free of
spelling and grammar errors
Followed writing expectations.
Author made no errors in
grammar or spelling that
distract the reader from the
Same-Sex Marriage
Social problems are the factors that affect and cause damage to society as a whole; it is
a term used mainly in describing issues within a particular area or the grouping of a certain
populace around the world (Leon-Guerrero, 2015). Social problems often include matters that
affect everyday life, and if those effects spread broadly enough, they begin to cascade into other
parts of society. Smaller scale problems only affecting a small number of individuals do not
constitute as social problems. A sociological approach to certain issues in society is the best
approach since it takes into consideration many factors hailing from the social environments that
might have led to cropping of negative mannerisms or issues by the target populace. There are
various ways of viewing our values or attitudes towards something depending on our cultural
A sociological approach considers the effects an issue may have on individuals, our
social, and physical world. For example, homosexuality used to be considered a mental illness
by the American Psychiatric Association up until 1973 (Leon-Guerrero, 2015). It was such a
shameful title and stigma many homosexuals chose suicide over public scrutiny. Today, many
still do; 30\% of gay youth attempt suicide near the age of 15 and over half of gay youth say they
have attempted suicide more than once (Speak, Inc., n.d.). That is a huge number of youth
suicides across the country elevating this epidemic into the social problem category.
Currently, there is a contrast to the perspective mentioned above that suggests
individuals could be born gay as oppose to being mentally defective. It is in this regard that
society is beginning to accept homosexual behavior as more “normal” and has begun changing
laws and societal interaction norms as a whole. In a recent Gallup poll from 2015, 60\% of
Americans approve of same-sex marriage as oppose to 35\% in 1999. That same poll shows
that 63\% of Americans think same-sex relationships are morally acceptable as oppose to just
38\% in 2002 (Gates & Jones, 2015). With roughly 3.9\% of the adult population in America selfidentifying as gay, there is such a large population of homosexuals in the U.S. that it requires
special attention to respect and meet basic civil rights (Newport, 2015). At this current rate of
increasing acceptance in society, it appears that the LGBT community is on the right track and
gaining momentum for true equality.
For this essay, I chose same-sex marriage as a social issue with a look at where the
previous taboo has seen a tremendous change in laws benefiting the gay community. Same-sex
marriage is legal in all states with some local county governments protesting against it due to
their own religious beliefs. The issue has seen various cities in different states denying issuance
of marriage licenses to same-sex couples leading the couple to travel to another state to obtain
a permit. Recently a county clerk was arrested for refusing a court order to issue marriage
licenses to same-sex couples citing religious convictions.
The issue goes beyond just wanting the state to recognize a couple’s love for one
another. Many same-sex couples are raising children of which potentially only one of them has
legal custody over. This can have serious consequences when one parent is not allowed to
make emergency decisions for the child. Employer offered healthcare could also not recognize
the child as biological thus denying coverage. When basic civil rights like access to healthcare
and emergency medical care is withheld from a particular group of people because of their
sexual orientation, it becomes a broader problem for all of society.
In another poll, Gallup estimates around 55\% of the LGBT populace are living as
unmarried same-sex couples (Gates & Jones, 2015). Historically there has been intense
opposition to same-sex marriages as oppose to straight. The functionalist perspective values
heterosexual relationships and finds all others to be problematic. The conflict perspective
assumes that heterosexuality is the norm encouraging discrimination against homosexuals. The
feminist perspective rejects marriage as an oppressive institution and believes the real fight is
with equality, freedom, and healthcare. The interactionist perspective suggests the development
of a gay identity depends on the support and reaction of others (Leon-Guerrero, 2015).
According to the functionalist and conflict perspective, those who engage in same-sex
marriages are a scourge to the countrys morality. Among the supporters of same-sex marriage
are human rights advocacies with the inclusion of the UN and Healthcare practitioners who
enlighten the communities against the stigmatization of such individuals (Leon-Guerrero, 2015).
In conclusion, many facets deal with current same-sex marriage social issues. Many
discriminatory policies are still in place making it difficult for same-sex couples to be truly treated
equally. With the Supreme Court’s ruling to legalize gay marriage across the country last year,
the gay community has made monumental bounds towards this end. Still, issues with bullying,
suicide, and lower levels of discrimination need to be addressed.
Gates, G. J., & Jones, J. M. (November 5, 2015). Same-Sex Marriages Up After Supreme Court
Ruling, Gallup. Retrieved on November 23, 2016, from
Leon-Guerrero, A. (2015). Social Problems:Community,policy,and Social Action (5th Edition
ed.). SAGE Publications. VitalBook.
Newport, F. (May 21, 2015). Americans Greatly Overestimate Percent Gay, Lesbian in U.S.,
Gallup. Retrieved on November 23, 2016, from
Speak, Inc. (n.d.). Suicide Facts. Retrieved November 22, 2016, from
LGBT Support Organizations
The essay profiles in-depth the organizations that are on the move to support same-sex
couples across the United States. These groups are mostly involved with the steering of policies
that benefit the LGBT community thus reducing their discrimination hailing mostly from religious
persons and the straight in the society. The LGBT community has made great progress in
regards to human rights by utilizing these organizations effectively.
Sociological Concepts
The basis for inequality among same-sex couples can be found with the fundamental
idea of heterosexism. Heterosexism is the assumption that heterosexuality is the norm and
should be morally elevated over homosexuality. It is defined by the “set of privileges or
advantages granted to some people because of their heterosexuality” (Leon-Gurerro, 2016) The
functionalist perspective identifies several, and is its self, a relevant sociological concept.
Society has a certain order and strives to maintain that order. Our society has historically
institutionalized heterosexuality as the normal set of ideas, institutions and relationships which
are acceptable (Leon-Gurerro, 2016). Homosexual behavior has long been a taboo in cultures
all over the world as it has been socially prohibited. Same-sex marriage is seen as immoral; it
destroys the tradition of marriage and could have negative impacts on children. Taboos are a
component of social control, as such, they relate to the actions that are significant for social
order (Taboo, n.d.). By labeling homosexuality taboo, societies can go on neglecting basic
human and civil rights related to such people involved. Until the recent decision in 2015 by the
Supreme Court to recognize same-sex marriages, they were considered deviant relationships
because they did not fit inside of society’s norm. Prior to the decision, legitimate kinship and
familial obligations were only granted through a heterosexual family (Leon-Gurerro, 2016). Each
of these concept present hurdles in the LGBT community for achieving total equality. Therefore,
advocacy groups are vital to the struggle and offer legitimate representation to a largely
neglected community.
LGBTQ Legal Advocates & Defenders
LGBTQ Legal Advocates & Defenders or “GLAD” is a non-profiting organization in the
United States (Gould, 2009). GLAD has done decisively more to advance the equality of LGBT
rights than any other organization to date. GLAD is based in Boston, Massachusetts and fights
to “create a just society free of discrimination based on gender identity and expression, HIV
status and sexual orientation” (GLAD, n.d.). An example of an early victory as a civil rights
advocate dates back to 1980 where GLAD represented Aaron Fricke in Fricke v. Lynch; an 18
year-old Cumberland High school student who won the right to bring a same-sex date to his
high school prom. A more recent case is in 2015 between DeBoer v. Synder (2015) where there
was an argument in the Supreme Court representing gay couples who sought the right to marry.
There was a consolidation of the case with Obergefell v. Hodges along with many others and
concluded in a 5-4 landmark vote guaranteeing the right of same-sex couples to marry
regardless of what state they lived in.
The social importance of this organization cannot be overstated. Same-sex couples can
now legally marry in all 50 states giving them 1,138 Federal benefits and responsibilities only
previously shared by same-sex marriages (Marriage Equality USA, n.d.). Emergency decisions
regarding children, spousal access to employer health insurance, automatic rights in the
absence of a will, and veteran spousal benefits are just a few of the implications from the
Supreme Court decision. Same-sex marriage is no longer considered deviant in the eyes of the
state and the taboo label is quickly dissolving in all but the most religious circles. While samesex couples are allowed to marry, there is still a lack of policy regarding discrimination in
schools and in the workplace. GLAD will continue to lobby and pass legislation against currently
discriminatory policies until true equality is achieved.
Basic Rights Oregon
Basic Rights Oregon is a non-profit LGBT organization that propagates for gay rights
from its headquarters in Portland (Karlan, 2013). In Oregon, it holds the largest advocacy group
for LGBT, and also works as a political organization seeking an end to discrimination based on
sexual orientation and gender identities. They are dedicated to identifying policy solutions that
help increase access to needed services in healthcare, passing non-discrimination policies to
protect LGBTQ Oregonians at work, shifting public opinion and achieving future policy victories
(Basic Rights Oregon, n.d.).
Basic Rights Oregon has a long history in its fight for equal rights for LGBT people with
various cases posed as exemplary efforts accrued from its formation. One example is the 2004
work against Ballot Measure 36 that had an amendment in the Oregon Constitution prohibiting
same-sex marriages. There was a whopping $3 million raised in the fight against the proposal;
those in favor composed of around 57 percentile with the rest of the 43 percentile opposing. A
federal judge later overturned the amendment thus allowing same-sex couples to marry. A
recent act towards LGBT rights propagation is the ban on discredited practices of minor
conversion therapies thus passing HB2307. It is known as the Youth Mental Health Protection
Act and was signed by Governor Kate Brown. “Conversion therapies are interventions that aim
to change an individual’s sexual orientation or gender identity to fit societal norms, typically
using a combination of counseling and prayer” (Lancet, 2015). President Obama called for an
end to these practices when a 17 year-old girl from Ohio committed suicide after being “treated”
against her will. In getting Oregon to outlaw such potentially harmful and controversial practices,
Basic rights Oregon is having a positive effect on the lives of the LGBT youth. They are also
actively pursuing policies that protect LGBT people of color who are even more vulnerable to
violence and discrimination.
Conclusively, both of these organizations are instrumental in the fight against
discrimination against same-sex couples and the LGBT community as a whole. In the political
arena, there is a division on the issue with Republicans holding a more conservative stance
against the same-sex marriages and the Democrats largely supporting it. Without these
organizations, many of the stigmas that have plagued the LGBT community would still be
dominant. They have done more for the community as an organized force than thousands of
individuals would be able to do independently.
Gould, M. R. (2009). The Library PR Handbook: High-Impact Communications. American
Library Association. Advent Press.
Karlan, S. (2013). In 1980, Two Boys Fought For The Right To Attend Prom Together. SAGE

Our History
T. Schaefer, R. (2013). Sociology: A Brief Introduction. New York: McGraw-Hill.
Lancet, T. (2015). Ending LGBT conversion therapies. The Lancet, 385(9977), 1478.

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