The Republican Party has long been the party to champion the American family. While liberals turn to the government and larger society to solve issues, the GOP seeks to build a government that ensures families have the best possible future. Families provide the most basic structure in society, two people, bound by love, together raising their community’s posterity. Decades of research has shown that households with two parents raise more successful and happier children ensuring our republic has a bright future. While not all such family households are married, the vast majority are and thus marriage is the first key step in building families.
Marriage, in essence, is nothing but a ritual, yet name one ritual found in every human civilization since the dawn of time, even in the natural world albeit less formal, partnerships are observed. As an institution, marriage recognizes a bond between two free-willed individuals who come together to care for one another, love one another and build a life together. Marriage has started wars and brought about peace throughout history. Throughout time our attitudes towards marriage have changed as well. Marriage out of economic necessity through arranged marriages and dowries are rare and we now marry out of love for our partner. Laws on who can marry who such as inter-racial marriage bans fell with the Civil Rights Movement.
It was in the Supreme Court Case that overturned bans on inter-racial marriage, Loving v. Virginia, that the Court unanimously wrote “the right to marry is of fundamental importance for all individuals.” A fundamental right, a right so basic yet so important, for if you do not have the right to decide who you can love, and who you want to spend the rest of your life with, what do you have without the right to love?
For too long the GOP has told millions of Americans they do not have the right to marry, to love. They have stated that only “natural marriage” between a heterosexual couple belongs in American society. The 2016/2020 GOP platform even goes as far as to assert that in the Supreme Court’s ruling in Obergefell v. Hodges “320 million Americans [were robbed] of their legitimate constitutional authority to define marriage.” Given that the Constitution has no mention of marriage we turn to the 10th Amendment which does indeed give this right to the people. Yet the majority of the American people, since 2013, have supported same-sex marriage.
The GOP has found itself once again in an outdated position, rather than listening to the American people it continues to officially oppose same-sex marriage. By opposing same-sex marriage the Republican Party is advocating for a government that determines who you can love. As a gay Republican, I find it shocking that the party I support, the party I am President of at my own university, continues to tell me and millions of other American that my love is invalid, that my love is not worthy of marriage.
While the re-adoption of the 2016 GOP platform in 2020 does not bode well, other signs point to a GOP that will quickly move to correct its mistakes. President Trump, unlike previous GOP Presidents, did not shy away from recognizing same sex marriage stating simply “it’s done” and was the first to ever mention same-sex rights in a GOP Convention. Prominent officials in his Administration such as Ambassador Richard Grennel are representative of the many gay Republicans who believe in their party’s message of freedom and liberty, and want to see those liberties granted to all.
In 2024 the GOP has an opportunity, not just to take back the White House or Congress, but to make a change. The GOP can either continue to stand on an outdated, exclusionary platform that seeks to tell Americans who they can and cannot love, or it can listen to the American people and the leaders within our party and choose to defend the right to form a family, the right to marry, the right to love, for all people.